Nisus Blog

Pronounced "Nice-us"


Eat Your Dogfood

February 10th, 2005 · 7 Comments

One of the best things about developing a word processor is that we get to use everyday for our normal work. I am writing our 2005 Marketing Plan right now (lots of graphics and tables, probably 50+ pages once I am finished.) This is my first chance to really use styles for a big-ish document. This is really exciting for me because one of the things that made me want my own word processor in the first place was my frustration with creating structured documents in Word.

Of course, my experience with Nisus Writer is probably like no one else. While I write our marketing plan, I am also testing Nisus under Tiger. When I find a bug, I report it to our engineering team or I fix it myself, which makes for a funny way of working. Tuesday I started writing and then spent most of the day instead making typing more responsive under Tiger. (Its really responsive now.) It paid off though, my writing Wednesday went much faster!

Tags: General

7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Tacitus // Feb 11, 2005 at 11:47 am

    good that NWE will be getting more responsive and reliable for long docs Given your comments on structured documents when will we see an outliner in NWE? Is it top/bottom/middle of the list?


  • 2 Charles Jolley // Feb 13, 2005 at 12:20 pm

    It depends on what you mean by outliner. Some people say that to mean a “navigator” that shows the document structure to the side so you can quickly navigate the document. Others actually want tools to create a structured outline, maybe as the first step in writing.

    You will be able to create structured outlines in this next release of Nisus Writer Express. We will not support hiding sections of the document yet though, but that is up on the list. We are also planning a navigator type features. This will probably not make it into the next release, but it will come soon after.


  • 3 Neema Agha // Feb 13, 2005 at 2:06 pm

    RTL support? Awesome. How about indexing? I can probably get by without outlining for a while but I really need indexing.

  • 4 Anonymous // Feb 16, 2005 at 12:19 pm

    Just out of curiosity, how does one do something to make “typing more responsive” from a programming perspective? I’m not a programmer, I’m just wondering for a layman explanation. And why wouldn’t it be responsive in the first place?

  • 5 Charles Jolley // Feb 16, 2005 at 4:17 pm

    It really depends on why typing was not responsive in the first place. In our case, Cocoa (the Mac OS X technology we use to display text) was doing some calculations after each keystroke that would slow down in long documents. I changed this so that now it will only do those calculations once you stop typing for a half second or so.

  • 6 Steven Byars // Feb 19, 2005 at 3:16 pm

    NWE is interesting, and usable for short works, but unuseable for longer works. Most of this, I think, is a problem with OSX itself. i.e.: The easiest way to work upon a longer document is to tile each chapter to the desktop and then pop them open into working position as needed for comparision, copy/pasteing, reference or whatever. Of course this requires control over both expanded and shrunken states of the document, which OSX does not provide. One of the two states is ALWAYS going to be OSX’s full screen — which is not very useful for word processing (or anything else that I’ve discovered). But, it is very Windoze like, which it seems to be OSX’s goal.

    Another problem is setting the margins. When I set the margins, THAT IS what I want them to be. Just because I change the size of the display window does NOT mean that I want my margins to move. Rather, they SHOULD say put!!!

    This list could go on and on. I see NWE as an interesting, not ready for prime time, beta version. When I need to actually work, I just go back to my G3 and Nisus Writer. I will continue to support Nisus, because I beleive that they will come up with a workable version. But I will also keep Nisus Writer and my old OS 9.1 G3 on-line. 🙂 STEVE

  • 7 cybertext // Mar 3, 2005 at 11:41 am

    Not sure how to start a new thread, so I’m posting here.
    I’m a long time Mac user and MS Word user. I love Word. I should mention that I’m a writer — books, poetry, articles, whatever.

    But, Word files self-corrupt. Every notice that? For several years, now, I’ve gone back to stuff I wrote a long time ago (1990s) and my Word files are corrupt. I used to think it was a virus issue — I wrote on a Windows laptop for a while. But I’m finding the same think on my OS X powerbook.

    Did some googling and found lots of people run into problems with corrupt Word files — it totally destroys your work. It’s not even funny. It’s like — I make sure everything is backedup and safe and archived, and MS Word has its own internal Self-Destruct bomb inside of it just to wipe out my precious (to me) words!

    Ergo, MS Word is now evil. It is 666. Word is worse that Spam.

    So I’m starting work work with NSE and pray that NWE doesn’t have that problem.

    And I have a feature request: I really like the way you can add tabs at the bottom of an Excel spreadsheet — basically you can keep several spreadsheets in one docuement, and tie them together.

    It’s like this: I write a book and it has several chapters. I’m not a very organized guy — it’s totally counterintuitive to me. So I want all my related word processing files to be in the same document, but separated into worsheets (I think that’s what Excel calles them).

    Can you guys do it?

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