NWP fails to open very large text files

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alexpassi
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Joined: 2004-04-19 23:23:31
Location: bologna, italy
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NWP fails to open very large text files

Post by alexpassi » 2009-10-04 05:57:13

Hi. I'm new to the Forum.
I have been using a very large dictionary file (over 17 Mb) for a number of years. It is currently in .txt format and I open it quite easily with TextWrangler. Word will handle it, but screws up my Unicode chrs. I haven't fiddled with all the alternatives but I seem to remmeber it would open with Neo Office as well.
I used to opern the file with Nisus under System 9 - it took a little longer to load, but otherwise was quite functional, and all sorts of searches and modifications were possible. Under MacOS 10, there was a brief respite under 10.4: clunky, but functional.
Since Mac OS 10.5 this has been impossible: though I have 4 Gb of RAM and a fairly fast machine (2.8 Mhtz), it simply takes too long too be of any use, and sometimes NWP will freeze up. Now I have migrated to 10.6 and the latest upgrade of NWP. But the file is still too big to be used. Hopeless.
Does anyone have any suggestions? It would be nice to modify the dictionary file with GREP patterns, etc. TextWrangler does many things but nothing fancy enough, and no font formatting.

Alex

Timotheus
Posts: 68
Joined: 2007-04-13 07:16:41

Re: NWP fails to open very large text files

Post by Timotheus » 2009-10-04 10:24:31

I don't have any suggestions, but I have exactly the same experience.

I have a document of 870.000 words. Yes, that's a very long document. But it consists of just plain text; no notes, no tables, no graphics, no sections. Utterly impossible to work with. The only thing I see is the pizza-wheel.

Another document counts approximately 270.000 words. Again: just plain text, no notes, graphics etc. Working with this document is not altogether impossible, but very difficult. Just to give an idea: switching from Page View to Style Sheet takes 8 seconds; switching from Style Sheet to Page View no less than 40 (!) seconds.

I have a fast computer, X.5.8, with 4 GB of memory.

Are there still others with similar experiences?

Groucho
Posts: 496
Joined: 2007-03-03 09:55:06
Location: Europe

Re: NWP fails to open very large text files

Post by Groucho » 2009-10-05 00:05:25

NWP’s text engine, which is really Apple’s, definitely is slow. There was much forum-ing about this time ago. Apple’s text engine has two main drawbacks: first, it is slow, and, secondly, only hyphenates words following the English pattern only. The latter choice is the least defensible of the two, since the hyphenation pattern used by Apple is derived from LaTex and is open source. Open Office, for one, offers a huge number of hyphenation patterns derived from LaTex.
My only hope is that Nisus develop its own text engine. I have little, if any, hope that Apple will improve its own.

Greetings, Henry

ptram
Posts: 280
Joined: 2007-10-21 14:59:09

Re: NWP fails to open very large text files

Post by ptram » 2009-10-05 00:23:53

Groucho wrote:My only hope is that Nisus develop its own text engine. I have little, if any, hope that Apple will improve its own.
It depends. I read that people are trying to write a novel on Apple's flagship product, the iPhone. So, maybe they will improve their text engine, sooner or later...

Paolo

Timotheus
Posts: 68
Joined: 2007-04-13 07:16:41

Re: NWP fails to open very large text files

Post by Timotheus » 2009-10-05 12:01:54

@ Groucho: that's what I already feared. Which means that, unless Nisus' developers find the time to write a text engine of their own, which should be a rather laborious task, Nisus will never be the best possibie choice for writing long and complex documents. For like you, I'm very pessimistic about Apple's willingness to sensibly improve its text engine. So probably we'll have to live with it. That's a pity, because Nisus certainly deserves better.

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