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Why do you choose Nisus? 
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Joined: 2013-12-23 10:02:06
Posts: 10
Lets be honest, Nisus is an obscure word processor for most people. I know it because of some guy who referenced it because he used it in the OS 9 (maybe 7) days. I would like to hear why do you choose to pay for Nisus writer even though there are many alternatives with bigger communities, support, tutorials, and common users you can share your files with them without formatting getting messed up. There are even free alternatives like OpenOffice and most people will only need simple editing tools that are free to use with Google Docs or OneDrive that offers free 7GB free too (and other office tools).

Personally I use Nisus because its the only word processor(maybe app) on the Mac that completely supports RTL languages. There is another app called Mellel but I have not looked too much into it.


I read an article (piece of a book) about Nisus history and I was wondering if Jerzy Lewak is still alive and working with Nisus and can some one show us this picture:
"Nisus Writer 4.0 was finally released, with a great sigh of relief, in October 1994. The employees (who at this point numbered about 25) celebrated with champagne and took pictures of themselves with the UPS guy loading the first boxes into the truck"

got it from here: http://alt.cc/tnw/1.html#1


2014-07-04 19:32:20
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Joined: 2006-12-08 00:46:44
Posts: 416
Location: London or Exeter, UK
I use NWP because, when I moved on to OSX when it first came out, I needed a wordprocessor that could work with Chinese, importing .doc files.

Mellel is a fine wordprocessor, and I used it to begin with, and might still be using it, if it weren’t for one major deal-breaker, which still exists … it cannot open .docs in Chinese, turning them into gibberish. The only way round this was to open them in TextEdit, save them as .rtf then open that in Mellel, a tedious work-around. If I were involved with RTL languages, I’d definitely be using Mellel.

Then after a few months, I came across a fledgling wordprocessor called “Opito Composer”, developed by one Charles Jolley. Not quite as powerful us Mellel, but less quirky and with a good interface and developeing fairly rapidly, and most importantly, being based on Apple’s text engine, opened Chinese .docs without problem, with .rtf as its native format, so easily compatible with my WinWord using colleagues. So I used that, until one day Charles Jolley sold it to Nisus and joined Nisus himself — much to the disgust of other Opito users, but not me — and I have used NW(P) ever since. It suits me, does absolutely everything I need — the only issue for me is floating-box anchors moving around, but that is less important to me now — I like the interface and appearance and am completely at home with it.

On the other hand, I haven’t liked MS Word since v. 5.1a on OS-8/9, and there is no way I’d shell out that sort of money for it now; and OpenOffice/LibreOffice I find ugly, un-Mac-like and unintuitive. As for Google Docs, I haven’t even looked at it … why should I? I have the WP that really suits me on a MacBook Air that goes everywhere with me.

That’s why I use NWP.

Mark


2014-07-05 03:44:30
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Joined: 2013-12-23 10:02:06
Posts: 10
Interesting, why would you say that you would definitely use Mellel over NWP if you were to deal with RTL languages?


2014-07-05 19:31:45
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Joined: 2006-12-08 00:46:44
Posts: 416
Location: London or Exeter, UK
Well, first of all, I get the impression that Mellel handles RTL really well — after all it uses a text-engine programmed by people who are RTL language users themselves. Secondly, if I was an RTL language user, I wouldn’t have had to look beyond Mellel … it would have met all my needs.

Mark


2014-07-06 12:51:19
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Joined: 2007-03-03 09:55:06
Posts: 494
Location: Europe
¡Hola familia!

Why did I choose Nisus? Well, I can’t imagine another application that is as intuitive, easy to use, and amusing. That’s all.

Greetings, Henry.


2014-07-06 23:06:50
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Joined: 2007-09-20 17:58:56
Posts: 179
I used Nisus in the pre-OS X era. But when I moved to OS X Mellel was handling Hebrew very well, which I needed. So for multiple language and structured writing, Mellel is my first choice. But for every day writing Nisus Pro is my choice. For some major projects I use Scrivener (curriculum and my blogs)

While I have an array of others (because of my job), including MS Word, LibreOffice, etc., I use them only when someone sends files in that format.

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2014-07-07 05:51:25
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Joined: 2013-12-23 10:02:06
Posts: 10
Why don't you use just 1 app for all your needs? They all do the same thing.

I think Nisus can handle multiple language structure just like mellel does. Also I hear people write books using Nisus so it can handle larger projects too. Or is it just to enjoy the variety of apps?


2014-07-11 13:52:50
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Joined: 2004-09-23 02:15:46
Posts: 164
Location: Switzerland
I use Nisus since the day Word 5.1 “swallowed” the first three chapters of a novel I had just started before I had printed them.
We were in 1990.
I cannot remember exactly how it happened, but I remember calling support, they answering it should not have happened but could not help mi. Didn't I have a copy? I had, so I made a copy of that and went back, and something just as erratic happened.
I was furious!
At the time, I was reading an American magazine about the Mac, and I had just seen an ad for Nisus, it promised interesting things like an automatic copy-as-you-write in another location, multiple selections etc. I was in a terrible hurry, I phoned them. A very nice lady promised to send me Nisus through UPS, I sent her money per express, and the next day I had it.
4 (or 5) disks, which I still have somewhere.
I installed them on my computer, and here I am, a quarter of a century later, having written some 15 novels, a couple of plays and scripts, articles, letters – everything with Nisus.
I tried Mellel, I tried Apple's own write processors. I even re-tried Word when they swore it was now perfect. To no avail, really, for different reasons.
I accept that Nisus is the processor for me. iWrite for iPad and iPhone, and Nisus (which imports iWrite flawlessly and vice-versa) on the computer.
I have never lost a line in so many years.
Long life to Nisus.

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Anne


2014-09-02 00:25:33
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Joined: 2004-09-23 02:15:46
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Location: Switzerland
Attachment:
Nisus Leward.gif
Nisus Leward.gif [ 84.89 KiB | Viewed 6808 times ]


Quote:
NBRN asked: I read an article (piece of a book) about Nisus history and I was wondering if Jerzy Lewak is still alive and working with Nisus


From this picture, I should say: very much so. It seems to be some 18 months old, true, but I still opt for yes and yes.

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Anne


2014-09-02 00:45:44
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Joined: 2016-02-10 00:45:13
Posts: 2
I'm not sure how it started. Tom Dowling, principal programmer of MMSForth, abandoned his principles and went off to sell real estate in Florida, leaving Forthwrite in limbo (this, back in the days of 5x7 dot-matrix printers). I wish I had kept Bill's postcard in response to a complaint about MSDOS on the Trash-80: he said, roughly, 'That was the easiest way to do it, and I didn't make enough money on the job to bother warning people', which neatly encapsulates Microsoft's business plan. So I haven't touched anything Microsoft since, um, 1978? One of my grad students brought a Classic Mac into the office one day, left it, and told me to play with it when I had the chance. The screen (5x8", was it?) seemed small, but unlike other software, it was not fundamentally user-hostile, and I am now am on Macs 25 and 26: a 17" MBK Pro (for Snow Leopard and MacForth) and a Mini running 10.9.5. I don't recall when Nisus showed up, but when it did, it just worked, its community was articulate and interesting, and it did everything I needed until I decided to move a 500,000-word project to the web. Nisus converted RTF to perfect HTM painlessly, but the files proved unmaintainable, with a plethora of single-use <span> and <p> tags. I now edit HTML in TextWrangler and view in Firefox. My latest computer is a Dell Linux netbook, 1/3 the price of the equivalent Mac, with abundant FOSS software—but apparently no plans by Nisus to notice Ubuntu.


2016-02-10 03:49:00
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Joined: 2007-10-21 14:59:09
Posts: 272
I came to Nisus after a long and troubled experience with wordprocessors. I guess I started with WordStar 2000 and Framework on a friend's PC, going through Microsoft Write (from Word 1.0 Mac) and WordPerfect on the Atari ST, then WriteNow, FullWrite and WordPerfect on the Mac. When I started having a regular job, I used Word 4 and Word 5.1 for Mac. I was very satisfied with Word, until version 6 (that is, WinWord for Mac) came out. This allowed me to happily meet Mellel, then Nisus Writer Pro.

I like how logically laid Nisus Writer is. It does not try to be smarter than you (as Word tries to be, with disastrous results), it doesn't try to overwhelm you with features, buttons and glowing lights. On the contrary, it tries to be an elegant and discrete assistant, with its most powerful tools and tricks hidden in a drawer.

And I like the power of its macros, and the abundance of them, created by Martin and by other fellow users. You can customize the wordprocessor ad libitum, and always make it your own wordprocessor.

Paolo


Last edited by ptram on 2016-05-25 16:01:59, edited 1 time in total.



2016-05-14 07:30:14
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Joined: 2007-09-20 17:58:56
Posts: 179
NBRN wrote:
Why don't you use just 1 app for all your needs? They all do the same thing.

I think Nisus can handle multiple language structure just like mellel does. Also I hear people write books using Nisus so it can handle larger projects too. Or is it just to enjoy the variety of apps?


Over the past two years (since I posted) I have used NWP more and more, and Mellel less and less. I really like Mellel (especially ease with Hebrew, Greek, and English and styles sheets), but many needed things have not been added/updated to Mellel in the last few years, the more open format (.rtf) for NWP, and my increasing use of Scrivener (and exporting) makes NWP more appropriate.

I will say that using the old Nisus Writer Classic for 2-3 years and since I have used NWP since its inception, NWP has never failed me. Can't say the same for MS Word, LibreOffice, OpenOffice, etc. (Mellel has been rock solid too.)

So, NWP is becoming my priority choice.

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2016-05-14 20:54:17
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Joined: 2017-06-13 09:21:48
Posts: 6
This is old, but I just got here, and I'm supposed to be doing something else.... so here's my two cents:
When I got my first Macintosh computer in 1992 I ran over all the stuff I was buying with my wife, asked for her input. She said, "Peter uses Word Perfect, so let's get Word Perfect." She also wanted a keyboard that 'snapped' like the IBM Selectric we had.
Great recommendations. When I happened to be at Peter's I mentioned Word Perfect and how terrific it was. He said he uses Word and always had.... I got a bootleg copy of Word figuring we might have to switch. I didn't like it at all. Everything took twice as many steps. It wasn't that I was just used to WP, Word sucked.
Then WordPerfect stopped supporting the Apple Mac. A new Operating System was being released leaving WP in the dust. My tech savvy friends said, "Use NIsus Writer, it's from Israel, it's smart and it can even handle foreign languages like Hebrew and Chinese..." I tried it out, and liked it a lot. That was about 20 years ago.
There are a lot of things I would change.... mostly to make it more efficient, but it worked great, still works great.
It backs up my open unsaved documents. When my computer crashes it then says it didn't back them up — while it's opening the back ups.... If that's an error, it's one I have no problems with. In 2002 when I was studying Chinese I was able to write Chinese with it. I don't think Word was able to do that for a few more years.
We still have to put up Word's intentional formatting destructive chauvinism, but I'd rather have to re-do the layout of some funky doc I have to use than have to put up with Word. When I was in other teacher's rooms and had to quickly project a lesson on the screen from their computer and they used Word? I'd have to turn off the spell checker. What an annoying piece of junk. Every third word would be underlined, for what reason? Who knows.
Anyone remember the little paper-clip that would randomly jump up? Someone at Microsoft must have thought, "How can we make using Word more like going through security at the airport?"


2017-06-13 10:25:39
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Joined: 2017-06-13 09:21:48
Posts: 6
When I got my first computer in 1992 (a Mac IIci) my wife said to get Word Perfect because a friend used it and liked it.
OK. Two years later I was in his studio and mentioned this to him. "But I've always used Microsoft Word."
Word was 'the standard.' So I got a bootleg copy as a trial before switching over.... Hated it. It's the nasty controlling boss of word processors. What was one step in WordPerfect was 3 steps in Word. I deleted the bootleg.
In the late 90s WordPerfect stopped supporting the Mac, the OS changed. Several of my Mac friends when I queried suggested Nisus Writer. It was then also the only word processor that could do Chinese.
I've been pretty happy with it.
But here's the thing about all software. Take Adobe as an example. I started using Illustrator in about 1995. Until about 2002 upgrades usually fixed something that gave me trouble every day. Since then..... a few changes were terrific, but in the last 10 years I can't think of a single improvement to Illustrator that fixes any of the chronic annoyances. And for the past two years they've wanted me to switch to paying them a monthly fee? For what? (Either I keep my CS 5 working or I find a replacement)
FileMaker Pro. It's probably the only useful 1990s era software that's still useful. I don't mean it was created in the 1990s, I mean it's still in the 1990s. Why? Microsoft Excel. When I learned about Open Office I stopped using Excel. All these spreadsheets are still basically VisaCalc from the 1970s. They haven't changed at all.
So Nisus Writer: There are dozens of small changes that would really improve it's usefulness. 1. Spell checker: I want the recommended spelling options not at the top of some menu that's on the other side of the screen. I want it right next to the word I've selected. 2. Fonts: they're still a pain. But the Font panel could be changed to be more efficient. How many times have I tried to click on the down arrow to make text smaller and instead it gets larger? That needs to be changed. 3. White space at the bottom of the document. Why is it that we're always typing at the bottom of the screen? OK, bring the bottom of your doc up. Well then there's all that other stuff at the bottom. 4. Pallets left and right. I've gone from a large monitor to a 15" MacBook Pro, to a 17" MBP back to a 15" MBP. I'm getting jammed in. Most of the Left Palettes I use only occasionally, so these can be left as single lines. Word count I use all the time.
Maybe what needs to happen is designers at Nisus should sit down with various users and take notes. See how they use NWP, listen to their gripes and complaints. The only reason we know Word is a drag is we've had the opportunity to use something better. I'll bet each one of us could find twenty people in the next 24 hours who willing to say on camera, "Word's great, I like using Word." They don't know anything else. (That being said, the Nisus design team should also sit with Word users and make notes of all the things that should never be done. Some of them might've once started as good ideas. As a teacher I often have to use Word on other computers. Why does it underline every other word as misspelled? Students are shouting how stupid I am while they completely miss what's written. They and their teacher have been trained that the squiggly red underline must be taken care of. Bill Gates is going to cure malaria. He couldn't even cure Word or Excel.)
Laser printers. I once had ink jets. Then Epson merged with a crime syndicate and ink jet cartridges became like a protection racket. "Lookee, youse can buy our hundred dollar cartridges and print twenty bee-you-tee-ful pages, or youse can never print again. I'm just saying...." So we all use Laser printers, but there are so many ways of highlighting, emphasizing etc using color, that in the end are just gray. Can anything be done about that? ("Dat's simple, buy yerself an ink jet. Look. We're your friends here.") in grayscale? different types of underlining, light gray boxes, etc....maybe yellow highlighting on the screen can be a light gray highlighting on the printout, blue prints as a box, pink prints as....


2017-09-10 06:48:28
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