New User Needing More Speed

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David Chunn
Posts: 5
Joined: 2004-10-29 12:09:17
Location: Birmingham, AL

New User Needing More Speed

Post by David Chunn »

I'm a new Mac-user, and I'm a writer. So I've got Appleworks and the Word demo as well as demos of NWE2, Mellel, and something else (can't remember at the moment). NWE2 is by far my favorite of the lot. I've used Word and WP on Windows in the past. Better than both. I love the feel and the setup, the thesaurus that I can keep visible at all times, and the simplicity (it's not heavy with things I don't need). This is the program I want to use, except for two problems which are interrelated.

First, the program is too slow when loading and making sweeping changes. I've got a brand new iMac G5 with 512mb Ram, so it's got to be the program. Second, it doesn't handle large documents well at all. I loaded up my first two novels (220,000 words and 80,000 words) as well as the current which is at 70,000 right now. Very slow, but it's just text no fancy formatting, so I think it should certainly be faster. Oddly, the current novel is the slowest and the program has quit unexpectedly several times. I think the latter might have been due to some unicode characters transferred from Word. I'm testing it to see. I know Word can carry a lot of baggage sometimes, too, some I'm going to filter it through a plain text program first.

(I wouldn't have this problem, obviously, if I divided my work into chapters, but I just can't work that way.)

Anyway, I understand you guys are working on the speed issues. And I wish you well. When this program can handle the documents lengths I work with and quickly, I will purchase it. But I can't justify the expense until then.

WattsM
Posts: 40
Joined: 2003-11-13 13:50:17
Location: San Jose, CA
Contact:

Post by WattsM »

From the Nisus Blogs, it sounds like NWX 2.1 is going to be released real soon, and performance is going to be one of the main issues addressed. So keep checking back. :)

joao
Posts: 55
Joined: 2003-04-25 04:42:14

Post by joao »

I've had very few speed problems with the program so far, but have to wonder if you really do have enough RAM. 512MB really is the bare minimum if you want to get stuff done, and if you're finding that other programs aren't quite as fast as you want them to be, you might consider adding some more RAM.

I'm not sure this is your problem, but my guess is you'd get better overall performance with even just 256MB of extra RAM.

dennisg
Posts: 73
Joined: 2004-05-16 07:51:28
Location: Seattle, WA

Post by dennisg »

joao,

I've got a lot more RAM than the original poster, and I'm also having speed problems. The scrolling through my 70-page book chapter is just glacial; I can't even imagine what a 220,000-word book would be like.

I also think the scrolling is directly related to the other bugs I'm experiencing. For example, when I load another chapter (a 90-page chapter written in Mariner Write), it scrolls briskly. Go figure.
- Dennis

"Is that your little friend in the wood chipper?"

joao
Posts: 55
Joined: 2003-04-25 04:42:14

Post by joao »

Dennis -

I guess that's a possibility - I really wasn't sure. I'm not having problems with scrolling with 40-60 page documents, so it was kind of a shot in the dark. I still recommend more RAM, though, if you want to keep multiple programs open and have things operating in the background.

WattsM
Posts: 40
Joined: 2003-11-13 13:50:17
Location: San Jose, CA
Contact:

Post by WattsM »

I just did a little test with one of the longest documents I have (actually, that document repeated four times to make it longer!). According to the stats panel, it's 61,648 words, and in 12-point double-spaced Courier, is 360 pages. Scrolling this document from beginning to end took 3 minutes and 57 seconds in Page View. In Draft View, it took 28 seconds.

Interestingly, the original document, a quarter that size, took just under 8 seconds to scroll in Draft View, and just over 16 seconds to scroll in Page View. So, the longer the document is, the worse the scrolling gets in Page View -- but the speed in Draft View remains consistent.

It would definitely seem to me that unless you're checking precise layout, you should write in Draft View, not Page View.

David Chunn
Posts: 5
Joined: 2004-10-29 12:09:17
Location: Birmingham, AL

Post by David Chunn »

My problem is that I'm picky about what the screen looks like, size of the lines, etc. while I write and so I haven't been able to make draft view look the way I want. However, since you mention the speed increase, I'll give it another try.

As for too little memory at 512 as someone mentioned earlier, I certainly can't afford more right now and don't think I should need more for wordprocessing. Especially since I don't do much multitasking while writing.

David Chunn
Posts: 5
Joined: 2004-10-29 12:09:17
Location: Birmingham, AL

A Speed Tip

Post by David Chunn »

I managed to add noticeable speed by disabling QuickFix and Smart Punctuation. I'd rather have them active, though, of course. I need them actually. When you write that many words, typos take forever to fix manually. Still, it might make things manageable until the new version. I'll try working in draft some more now.

(Oh, and thanks for the comments so far everyone.)

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