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Emacs vs Scrivener

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Emacs vs Scrivener

drain
Has anyone tried out Scrivener? I'm curious if does anything (substantive)
that Emacs cannot do.
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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Susan Cragin-2
>Has anyone tried out Scrivener? I'm curious if does anything (substantive)that Emacs cannot do.

I have tried it. It's strengths are its user-friendly non-computer-literate interface and print-friendly functions.

If you have Linux there is a free downloadable version. I think there is a 30-day trial for other systems.

I used it for a while and went back to emacs. Emacs is fine if you know the basic procedure for writing a book, and if you are familiar with org commands.




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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Stefan Monnier
In reply to this post by drain
> Has anyone tried out Scrivener?  I'm curious if does anything (substantive)
> that Emacs cannot do.

How 'bout the possibility to look at the source code, modify it, pass it
to your friends?


        Stefan
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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Xavier Maillard-8
In reply to this post by Susan Cragin-2
>
> >Has anyone tried out Scrivener? I'm curious if does anything (substantive)that Emacs cannot do.

We are on a GNU mailing list. Why do you want to promote such (privative?) software here ?

        Xavier
--
http://www.gnu.org
http://www.april.org
http://www.lolica.org

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Dmitry Gutov
In reply to this post by drain
drain <[hidden email]> writes:

> Has anyone tried out Scrivener? I'm curious if does anything (substantive)
> that Emacs cannot do.

To add another unsatisfying answer to the bunch, I'm almost certain that
yes, it does. Junding from the screenshots, it features a more
visual-oriented interface that should be more comfortable for
non-programmers.

For example, this view looks like something that would be hard to
replicate with what Emacs provides currently:

http://www.literatureandlatte.com/gfx/ScrivShots/win-write_structure_revise-lg.jpg

On the other hand, if you know what you're doing, Emacs has tools for
managing notes, cross-references, etc, that many people find sufficient.
See Org mode, for example.

--Dmitry

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

drain
In reply to this post by Xavier Maillard-8
Xavier Maillard-8 wrote
We are on a GNU mailing list. Why do you want to promote such (privative?) software here ?
Any promotion is incidental to the question, which aims to discover missing
Emacs figures: crucial to expanding and improving it, and attracting new
users, perhaps users of Scrivener.
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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Bastien Guerry
drain <[hidden email]> writes:

> Xavier Maillard-8 wrote
>> We are on a GNU mailing list. Why do you want to promote such (privative?)
>> software here ?
>
> Any promotion is incidental to the question, which aims to discover missing
> Emacs figures: crucial to expanding and improving it, and attracting new
> users, perhaps users of Scrivener.

I agree this could be useful.

The best way to have a constructive discussion about features in other
(free or proprietary) text editors is to start by pointing at one feature
that you like and don't have (or don't know) in GNU Emacs.

--
 Bastien

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Matt Price-2
On Wed, Nov 21, 2012 at 4:11 AM, Bastien <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>
> The best way to have a constructive discussion about features in other
> (free or proprietary) text editors is to start by pointing at one feature
> that you like and don't have (or don't know) in GNU Emacs.


I've looked at Scrivener and I can definitely see the appeal, but it'
hard to distill these down into individual 'features' that might be
compatible with Emacs. Here are two cool things about it (to start
with):

- IIUC, one organizing principle of Scriviener is a spatial metaphor:
"Scrivener is intended to be a kind of “writer’s shed” for those of us
who don’t have a spare shed."  So drafts are organized as projects
which are kept in virtual "binders".  I think this metaphorical
framework is important to its appeal -- it turns your laptop into a
giant desk on which ou can arrange and rearrange elements of a complex
text.  The whole interfae is influenced by this metaphor...
- In concert with this, each document -- each piece of a project --
has both a title and a synopsis, which are represented by an "index
card"  You cna move index cards around within the project.  I like
this because sometimes, with a ocmplex piece of writing, it can be
helpful to look at al the elements and rearrange them in space.  A
whiteboard is good for this, or scraps of paper on a blank table.
Org-mode lets you refile headings easily, but the one-dimensional
ordering isn't as satisfying to me as objects that can be dragged form
one place to another.

I've attached two screenshots that might make this clearer.

What do you think, Bastien?  Is a lot of this already in org-mode?  &
what kinds of tweaks would be necessary to make the emacs interface
more tactile-feeling, or anyway spatially intuitive?

Matt



>
>
> --
>  Bastien
>

scrivener-index-cards.png (1M) Download Attachment
scrivener-01.png (370K) Download Attachment
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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Matt Price-2
On Wed, Nov 21, 2012 at 11:36 AM, Matt Price <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Wed, Nov 21, 2012 at 4:11 AM, Bastien <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>>
>> The best way to have a constructive discussion about features in other
>> (free or proprietary) text editors is to start by pointing at one feature
>> that you like and don't have (or don't know) in GNU Emacs.
>
>
> I've looked at Scrivener and I can definitely see the appeal, but it'
> hard to distill these down into individual 'features' that might be
> compatible with Emacs. Here are two cool things about it (to start
> with):
>
> - IIUC, one organizing principle of Scriviener is a spatial metaphor:
> "Scrivener is intended to be a kind of “writer’s shed” for those of us
> who don’t have a spare shed."  So drafts are organized as projects
> which are kept in virtual "binders".  I think this metaphorical
> framework is important to its appeal -- it turns your laptop into a
> giant desk on which ou can arrange and rearrange elements of a complex
> text.  The whole interfae is influenced by this metaphor...
> - In concert with this, each document -- each piece of a project --
> has both a title and a synopsis, which are represented by an "index
> card"  You cna move index cards around within the project.  I like
> this because sometimes, with a ocmplex piece of writing, it can be
> helpful to look at al the elements and rearrange them in space.  A
> whiteboard is good for this, or scraps of paper on a blank table.
> Org-mode lets you refile headings easily, but the one-dimensional
> ordering isn't as satisfying to me as objects that can be dragged form
> one place to another.
>
> I've attached two screenshots that might make this clearer.
>
> What do you think, Bastien?  Is a lot of this already in org-mode?  &
> what kinds of tweaks would be necessary to make the emacs interface
> more tactile-feeling, or anyway spatially intuitive?
>
> Matt
>
>
Thinking about this a bit more -- I wonder if the way to implement
some of htese features would be to have some kind of an HTML5 app that
uses an org-mode parser to manipulate text objects in a canvas element
of some kind.  When you want to actually edit text, an emacs editor
could create a buffer containing the relevant headline; but when
you're reordering stuff & adding metadata, etc., the app could work
directly with the underlying org file(s).  Is there already a
web-based emacs editor, or an emacs android app?  I can see that
something like this would be awesome on the nexus tablet I just
ordered...

ok, that was just a thought from someone who doesn't have the skills
to implement it, anyone else out there have any ideas?

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Burton Samograd-3
> Is there already a web-based emacs editor, or an emacs android app?

http://ymacs.org

http://www.emacswiki.org/emacs/EmacsOnAndroid

--
Burton Samograd


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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Bastien Guerry
In reply to this post by Matt Price-2
Hi Matt,

Matt Price <[hidden email]> writes:

> - IIUC, one organizing principle of Scriviener is a spatial metaphor:
> "Scrivener is intended to be a kind of “writer’s shed” for those of us
> who don’t have a spare shed."  So drafts are organized as projects
> which are kept in virtual "binders".  I think this metaphorical
> framework is important to its appeal -- it turns your laptop into a
> giant desk on which ou can arrange and rearrange elements of a complex
> text.  The whole interfae is influenced by this metaphor...

One feature that can be implemented for Emacs is this one: bind several
windows together and have some commands act on them all.

For example, if you have a two-windows frame, you can bind these two
windows and run C-s in both of them simultaneously.  Another example:
you could open two dired buffers then run M-% (and `D') in both of them
simultaneously.

This is closer to the concept of a workspace than of virtual binders,
and it's not straightforward to implement this, but it would be useful.

> - In concert with this, each document -- each piece of a project --
> has both a title and a synopsis, which are represented by an "index
> card"  You cna move index cards around within the project.  I like
> this because sometimes, with a ocmplex piece of writing, it can be
> helpful to look at al the elements and rearrange them in space.  A
> whiteboard is good for this, or scraps of paper on a blank table.
> Org-mode lets you refile headings easily, but the one-dimensional
> ordering isn't as satisfying to me as objects that can be dragged form
> one place to another.

The refile mechanism could be enhance by allowing fuzzy matching of
headlines, and creating those that do not exist in the .org file.
On my todo-list for when I have some time (which is obviously not
anytime soon...)

> What do you think, Bastien?  Is a lot of this already in org-mode?  &
> what kinds of tweaks would be necessary to make the emacs interface
> more tactile-feeling, or anyway spatially intuitive?

I don't know about the spatial metaphor, I'm not familiar enough with
scrivener.  But there is surely room for small improvements tha makes
the Emacs experience even better.

Best,

--
 Bastien

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Eric Abrahamsen-2
Bastien <[hidden email]> writes:

> Hi Matt,
>
> Matt Price <[hidden email]> writes:
>

[...]

>> - In concert with this, each document -- each piece of a project --
>> has both a title and a synopsis, which are represented by an "index
>> card"  You cna move index cards around within the project.  I like
>> this because sometimes, with a ocmplex piece of writing, it can be
>> helpful to look at al the elements and rearrange them in space.  A
>> whiteboard is good for this, or scraps of paper on a blank table.
>> Org-mode lets you refile headings easily, but the one-dimensional
>> ordering isn't as satisfying to me as objects that can be dragged form
>> one place to another.

[...]

> I don't know about the spatial metaphor, I'm not familiar enough with
> scrivener.  But there is surely room for small improvements tha makes
> the Emacs experience even better.

I think the idea here would be a pretty radical departure from Emacs'
display engine: both in this thread and the earlier mention of
Tinderbox, the goal would be a true two-dimensional canvas with shapes
and colors, where each heading was represented by a malleable,
positionable "blob" with certain attributes. Obviously this isn't
something that either Emacs or Org should be responsible for -- I think
Matt's suggestion of an HTML5 app based on an Org parser would be the
only practicable solution. Lots of work though!


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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Oleksandr Gavenko (aka gavenkoa)
In reply to this post by Bastien Guerry
On 2012-11-24, Bastien wrote:

> One feature that can be implemented for Emacs is this one: bind several
> windows together and have some commands act on them all.
>
> For example, if you have a two-windows frame, you can bind these two windows
> and run C-s in both of them simultaneously.

Do you think about workflow? Each C-s move across matches in all window or
sequentially? What if match in another window?

>  Another example: you could open two dired buffers then run M-% (and `D') in
> both of them simultaneously.
>
Emacs remember arguments for command so it is easy to duplicate repeat actions
across buffers. Also keyboard macros help a lot...

--
Best regards!


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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Bastien Guerry
Oleksandr Gavenko <[hidden email]> writes:

> On 2012-11-24, Bastien wrote:
>
>> One feature that can be implemented for Emacs is this one: bind several
>> windows together and have some commands act on them all.
>>
>> For example, if you have a two-windows frame, you can bind these two windows
>> and run C-s in both of them simultaneously.
>
> Do you think about workflow? Each C-s move across matches in all window or
> sequentially? What if match in another window?

I was thinking of something synchroneous.

But early prototypes might tell what is more handy.

>>  Another example: you could open two dired buffers then run M-% (and `D') in
>> both of them simultaneously.
>>
> Emacs remember arguments for command so it is easy to duplicate repeat actions
> across buffers. Also keyboard macros help a lot...

Yes.

--
 Bastien

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Matt Price-2
In reply to this post by Bastien Guerry
On Sat, Nov 24, 2012 at 12:46 PM, Bastien <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi Matt,
>
> Matt Price <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>> - IIUC, one organizing principle of Scriviener is a spatial metaphor:
>> "Scrivener is intended to be a kind of “writer’s shed” for those of us
>> who don’t have a spare shed."  So drafts are organized as projects
>> which are kept in virtual "binders".  I think this metaphorical
>> framework is important to its appeal -- it turns your laptop into a
>> giant desk on which ou can arrange and rearrange elements of a complex
>> text.  The whole interfae is influenced by this metaphor...
>
> One feature that can be implemented for Emacs is this one: bind several
> windows together and have some commands act on them all.
>
> For example, if you have a two-windows frame, you can bind these two
> windows and run C-s in both of them simultaneously.  Another example:
> you could open two dired buffers then run M-% (and `D') in both of them
> simultaneously.
>
> This is closer to the concept of a workspace than of virtual binders,
> and it's not straightforward to implement this, but it would be useful.
>
>> - In concert with this, each document -- each piece of a project --
>> has both a title and a synopsis, which are represented by an "index
>> card"  You cna move index cards around within the project.  I like
>> this because sometimes, with a ocmplex piece of writing, it can be
>> helpful to look at al the elements and rearrange them in space.  A
>> whiteboard is good for this, or scraps of paper on a blank table.
>> Org-mode lets you refile headings easily, but the one-dimensional
>> ordering isn't as satisfying to me as objects that can be dragged form
>> one place to another.
>
> The refile mechanism could be enhance by allowing fuzzy matching of
> headlines, and creating those that do not exist in the .org file.
> On my todo-list for when I have some time (which is obviously not
> anytime soon...)
>
>> What do you think, Bastien?  Is a lot of this already in org-mode?  &
>> what kinds of tweaks would be necessary to make the emacs interface
>> more tactile-feeling, or anyway spatially intuitive?
>
> I don't know about the spatial metaphor, I'm not familiar enough with
> scrivener.  But there is surely room for small improvements tha makes
> the Emacs experience even better.
>
Looking again at these screenshots:  I think a big part of what
Scrivener has going for it is in the choices it makes regarding
display of data.  The display has 3 columns:

Left:  View of project or "binder" tree -- each project is likely to
contain a couple of top-level items, e.g. "Draft" and "Notes", with
lots of sub-headings in each of these.  This view gives a very quick
overview of the whole project.

Right:  Several kinds of metadata for the active node:  on top, the
synopsis'; in the middle, a general metadata editor; and on the
bottom, some further notes.

Centre:  one of several views. There's the drag-and-drop 'corkboard'
interface I talked about before, but there's also a simple text-editor
view and an outline view.  If we ignore the drag-n-drop interface
(which is hard) I can imagine a lot of this could be done in Emacs
using something like the linked-window setup Basien describes & maybe
some minor modes for editing org document nodes. So you could have a
setup something like this:

Project:  Each project lives in a single text file for now (might be
unwieldy for some projects)

Windows:
Left:   a headlines-only view of an org-mode file, in which clicking
on a headline activates it and/or unfolds a subtree (a '+/-' marker in
the first column might be nice here).
Cenre:  an indirect buffer that shows only the active node.
Right Top:  an editor for a :Synopsis: property -- just an wasy way to
access this property without folding & unfolding.
Right Middle:  some kind of view of all node properties
Right Bottom:  Not sure we nee this 'notes' node.

Then the trick would be to bind some set of keystrokes reliably across
these windows that makes navigation between them really easy.

Maybe an interface like this would make a good GSOC project?  'Emacs
Writer's Shed'?

Matt


> Best,
>
> --
>  Bastien

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Matt Price-2
In reply to this post by Burton Samograd-3
On Thu, Nov 22, 2012 at 12:36 PM, Burton Samograd <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> Is there already a web-based emacs editor, or an emacs android app?
>
> http://ymacs.org
>
> http://www.emacswiki.org/emacs/EmacsOnAndroid
>
Looks like ymacs would be the way to go, though it doesn't seem to
support org-mode (from what I can see).  I do think the kind of
Canvas-based editor I described & Eric commented on would be really
cool, but I guess probably pretty difficult to implement.  Certainly
beyond my skills, at least if anyone wants it to get done in a finite
amount of time.

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Matt Price-2
In reply to this post by Eric Abrahamsen-2
On Sat, Nov 24, 2012 at 10:08 PM, Eric Abrahamsen
<[hidden email]> wrote:

> Bastien <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>> Hi Matt,
>>
>> Matt Price <[hidden email]> writes:
>>
>
> [...]
>
>>> - In concert with this, each document -- each piece of a project --
>>> has both a title and a synopsis, which are represented by an "index
>>> card"  You cna move index cards around within the project.  I like
>>> this because sometimes, with a ocmplex piece of writing, it can be
>>> helpful to look at al the elements and rearrange them in space.  A
>>> whiteboard is good for this, or scraps of paper on a blank table.
>>> Org-mode lets you refile headings easily, but the one-dimensional
>>> ordering isn't as satisfying to me as objects that can be dragged form
>>> one place to another.
>
> [...]
>
>> I don't know about the spatial metaphor, I'm not familiar enough with
>> scrivener.  But there is surely room for small improvements tha makes
>> the Emacs experience even better.
>
> I think the idea here would be a pretty radical departure from Emacs'
> display engine: both in this thread and the earlier mention of
> Tinderbox, the goal would be a true two-dimensional canvas with shapes
> and colors, where each heading was represented by a malleable,
> positionable "blob" with certain attributes. Obviously this isn't
> something that either Emacs or Org should be responsible for -- I think
> Matt's suggestion of an HTML5 app based on an Org parser would be the
> only practicable solution. Lots of work though!
>
>
I wonder, though, whether this is something the community really ought
to be thinking about, especially as tablets become more prevalent.  I
love that org-mode keeps my life in plain-text but also lets me view
and manipulate document structure really easily. Emacs works great for
keyboard-centric users, but is harder to use with a pointer.  What
happens when we are drawing as much as we're typing? It would be so
great to be able to WRITE in emacs, and then restructure a document in
a canvas interface on a tablet.  at least, I think it would...

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

Bastien Guerry
In reply to this post by Matt Price-2
Matt Price <[hidden email]> writes:

> Maybe an interface like this would make a good GSOC project?  'Emacs
> Writer's Shed'?

Maybe not a *clone* of the Scrivener interface, but a prototype
implementing some of it, yes.

But this is more for users who like to have several windows open
at the same time: I'm more of the "one frame, one window" type...
and that's one of the reasons I like Org.  Focusing on a node is
one keystroke away.

--
 Bastien

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Re: Emacs vs Scrivener

William Gardella
In reply to this post by Burton Samograd-3
Matt Price <[hidden email]> writes:

> On Thu, Nov 22, 2012 at 12:36 PM, Burton Samograd <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>> Is there already a web-based emacs editor, or an emacs android app?
>>
>> http://ymacs.org
>>
>> http://www.emacswiki.org/emacs/EmacsOnAndroid
>>
> Looks like ymacs would be the way to go, though it doesn't seem to
> support org-mode (from what I can see).  I do think the kind of
> Canvas-based editor I described & Eric commented on would be really
> cool, but I guess probably pretty difficult to implement.  Certainly
> beyond my skills, at least if anyone wants it to get done in a finite
> amount of time.
>

You might look at Elnode ( https://github.com/nicferrier/elnode ), which
is a node.js-like asynchronous web server for Elisp-based web apps, and
org-ehtml ( https://github.com/eschulte/org-ehtml ) which is an
elnode web app for displaying org files in an editable format.  Perhaps
this could be built-upon to create a visually attractive "writer's shed"
that even offered some collaborative editing features.  One's
copy-editor or co-writer needn't even know that Emacs lay behind it all.

Best,
WGG

--
I use grml (http://grml.org/)
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