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Old 07-06-2011, 05:19 PM
schferk schferk is online now
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Printing, Combining

Could printing be enhanced ?

First, it would be nice to have some presets from which to choose from, as reports, letters, faxes, mails, etc., perhaps a dozen a so, but even 3 or 4 such presets the user could tweak to his needs, then store, and, when printing, could call up, would be extremely handy (within UR: different margins, different headers / footers, etc. ; even better, presets allowing for presetting printer characteristics: perhaps which one of several given printers, and especially, tray selection (= stationary selection) ; but then, the former characteristics would do, i.e. letters, reports... all with the same paper if necessary). Have a look at ActionOutline, where such print presets ain't perfect but outstanding compared with the competition.

Second, printing a subtree is a real ordeal :

a )

It should be sufficient to select the "head" of that subtree, and then have an option, "print/select the selected item only" vs. "with all its subs", like that we have that in numerous competitors. Here in UR, we first have to expand the whole subtree, then we have to select that whole subtree (by shift-downarrow), and then only we can proceed to printing ; that two unnecessary steps too many.

b )

Then there isn't any option to have any other divider than a pagebreak for each of those items. For many uses, each item on a new page is a good thing, but for many other uses, it's totally inacceptable, especially if you use UR to better construct a piece of work but that then will be presented to third parties.

I know UR has many export options, but it should be possible to correctly print WITHIN UR, not having to go by MS Works Text, MS Word or other third party programs.

It should be possible to have the option to CHOOSE the divider between items when printing within UR, i.e. page break, number x of white lines (i.e. a field for entering 1, 2, 3...), and to have the possibility to choose a special character as divider, fur further processing that is. To my knowledge, UR, at this time, is the only contender not offering any alternative to the page break as a divider when printing several items.

c )

Thus, in order to print a subtree, without page breaks between the items, I had to look further. Of course, there the "help" file, which states, in "Combine Info Items" :

Multiple Info Items (including titles, form fields, rich text or item text) can be combined into a new Text Info Item using the following procedure:

1. Select the Info Items to be combined

2. Copy them to the clipboard (Edit | Copy or Ctrl+C)

3. Navigate to the location for the new combined Info Item

4. Use the Paste Rich Text/Paste Rich Text with titles option to paste the combined Rich Text (available at Edit | Paste Special on the menu)

See Also:
Print Multiple Info Items
Import Rich Text
Helpful Features
Note: Available in Professional edition only."

Well, I was NOT able to do anything good with this "help".

If I try to paste the items into the text field of the new "combined" item, all special paste options are greyed out except for "paste text", and if I do that, I get that subtree, with indents, into the text pane, but without the contents of all those items within that subtree.

Several tries to "paste special", rtf with or without "titles", into a manually put-in new "combined" item, or right into the tree, did not show any acceptable result; all I got was a totally crippled "subtree", showing only the very first indented item of about 20.

d )

So I searched the forum, and the following threads seem to be of interest here :

"Export Subtree Documents to One File" :

"Combining Items" :

"3.2 option: 'Show combined note text for multiple...": Can't get it" :

e )

In one of these, you say,

"Check Tools | Options | Editor | Show combined text for multiple selection, then select the items to export and print to PDF"

- well, this option is not even contained in the QuickOptions list, and for normal uses, I certainly would not want to have the text of several selected items combined, so this feature should be accessible by a quick toggle, just for these print uses, instead of having to search for it in the depths of the options presets.

f )

All this having understood more or less, I suppose the current possibilities are, in practice, to forget UR's inbuilt print engine (= third-party thing ? could it be replaced by something better, then ?), except for printing single items, and to do anything else by exporting (= rtf) into any text program ; for exporting, it seems to be possible to have a code character of your choice for item separation, and within the external text program then, you replace that code char by anything you want, i.e. 2 blank lines, e.g.

BTW, I do a lot of printing of reference things, contained in just 1 single UR item for each of them, and then, in order to print those reference materials on ONE single page, I do indeed macro export, even of single items, to an MS Works 3 column print preset format, where, in case of need, I diminish the point size from 10 to 9... to 8...

g )

But let's face it, it would much more elegant to have good printing possibilities WITHIN UR, even for the 3-columns thing there, and any mention of working on an UR item with MS Word, which is made so easy by UR indeed, goes astray here, since this (for many people assuredly) very handy feature does NOT allow (of course, and how should it do so ?) to work on MULTIPLE UR items.

Thus, UR's MS Word integration does almost nothing for enhancing UR's missing printing power, and so, UR should do something about it, in-house.

h )

Did I overlook something more easy, something more elegant ? Of course, exporting and then printing from third-party software is technically possible, but we should all agree that smooth printing is a feature a program of this class should have by its own means.


I'm sorry for having called my own error a "bug", and without a question mark at that, since it's definitely not UR's fault ; a mouse driver ran wild, capturing the right arrow key in such a weird way as described there.

Last edited by schferk; 07-06-2011 at 05:24 PM.
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Old 07-06-2011, 06:35 PM
schferk schferk is online now
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a )

So, I'm trying my best with export, and unfortunately, my memory was bad : Even there, there is NO special character to be inserted between items ; it's just that there you can CHOOSE if there will be a page break of not, so if you know how to change a page break into another special character (I don't know at this time), you could use that as a special character from which to work on.

If you don't check that option, you just get 3 blank lines between the items, but much more important, the indent level is NOT preserved, let alone any semi-automatic formatting for different indent levels, so even the text of your items isn't distinguishable from the items' headers (I've got it all in Arial, but in diffrent point sizes, whereas in the rtf file, it's all the same size.

Let alone the fact that of the two options, "text items to an rtf doc" and "item notes to a rtf doc", it's the FIRST one you must choose, in order to retain the text of your items (the option "including titles" being on in both cases) - that's not easy to grasp (= kind say for "illogical" but perhaps again I didn't understand too well).

In fact, indentations / the different levels MUST be preserved, since without that, your manual work would be gigantic if the exported subtree contains more than just some items.

b )

So now I'm searching for a numbering function that could help with identifying the titles and their indentation level...

c )

A side-step : Are you aware that all these numbering functions in competitors - and hoping UR has such a fonction also -, ain't that good ?

In fact, if you write for "publication", be it in book form or just a lenghty paper, relying on an outliner's capability to fractionize your writing, before a printed output to be read by third parties, you have always that need to reference parts of your work in other parts of your work.

Often you must work on those references, and here UR and some of its contenders excel : Those references are made between the chunks of your electronic work, and you can access them within your electronic work, i.e. when writing.

d )

But then there's the catch : On final count, (most of) those references are meant to work IN PRINT ! "in print" being when published, or just when read on laser print-outs, no matter, but read on paper.

There, all your electronic referering is GONE, and you'll do your "print referencing" manually, or - in fact, that's the only real solution for now - by having encoded, all your electronic work along, special, cryptical reference codes, be it for InDesign, for Quark XPress, for PageMaker, for Framemaker (look into their manuals' appendices, they all have such codes, every program having its own)...

e )

But these special codes will DOUBLE your electronic references in your outliner, you always will have to take care to not forget to put in (= double, here and there) your "publishing reference code" together with your electronic reference.

f )

To my knowledge, there is NOT ONE contender facilitating this need for the printing referencing needs, on top of the working referencing needs, and of course, with the existing electronic systems, you cannot do it since any shuffling around of chunks of your work - the great advantage of outliner systems - will make the electronic references useless for any printing reference needs.

g )

Which is to say that the great step ahead would be a numbering system NOT as an add-on for printing and exporting, just numbering the results of your work, but a "live view" numbering system working from the creation of your first item on, and updating an internal reference table with every shuflling around of items and even paragraphs within those items.

h )

There's no need to say that if you can facilitate just a little bit your reference work by manual coding for InDesign and others, by macros, in fact you need a numbered list, let's say the numbers from 1 to 1,000 or more of them, and every time you do such a manual reference, you'll cross out the next number on your list, on paper, with a pencil, and be careful to put exactly that number as the identifier into your reference code ; scholars being programmers in their spare time even could imagine a script system automatically offering them such numbers upon macro request ; it really goes wild as soon as our scholars are working on different papers at the same time (and even on paper, don't mangle your lists !)... my proposal would be, do one big list for all your work, even if then, rather soon, you'll be into the 5-digit numbers...

i )

UR isn't a bad program ; just look at its locking up the item you're working on, in a network, instead of locking up the whole file, as contenders do.

But there are tasks where UR could, after much programming work, be ways ahead of the competition, AND serve a vast market, the scholarly market being a very big one, and a rather poorly served as well.

j )

So you see, (missing) footnotes ain't the problem ; their encoding for publishing is extremely simple ; even a very basic UR macro would do, make it a field in the options where you enter the code characters before and after, with, in the middle of it, an "x", representing the footnotes' text, and on triggering the "Footnote!" command, make pop up a dialog screen where you just enter that footnote's text, and close by return, so even scholars without macro programming environment can use it smoothly. Footnotes are easy.

Where UR could prove, again, its - many a time proven already - excellence is by a living numbering system - AND it will pay, creating a whole new, big market... and where there are plenty of dollar bills to come in.


I didn't get printed my about 20 items yet...
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Old 07-06-2011, 08:05 PM
schferk schferk is online now
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After some more trying out UR (and reading those 3 above-mentioned threads carefully), I see / suppose this :

- The "combine text of selected items" function, has it been programmed since it was easy to program ? I'm asking because I cannot imagine a single real use for this function that does not put the items' titles into between those snippets ; we're not supposed to put them into that combined text, manually, at the right positions, then ? So this option certainly doesn't need a QuickOption indeed.

- UR doesn't have any numbering function for exporting / printing items, as almost any other contender has, let alone various options as numbers with dots or no dots, different formats for different levels, Roman numbers, combinations of these... ( See ActionOutline for all the variants.) But then, since there isn't anything, why not make it as explained above, starting from scratch but on the highest possible intellectual level. )

( I know there is numbering within the editor ; that's a completely other thing. )

- It's currently impossible (??? I just cannot believe that !) to retain the outline structure (titles with various indentations, and items' text / content indented further) of a tree / subtree exported or printed.

- Printing to pdf does not do anything else to all this, no indentation, no way to see what's items' titles and at which level, and what's text / content.

- I see TWO solutions to do here in UR what every (?) other contender does without any problems :

- We have the system attribute "indentation level" ; thus, by scripting, we would be able to put special indentation characters before each item's title, let's say #1...#4, in the tree, before exporting ; in the third party text program, we would resolve those codes into formatting and indenting ; text would be without such code and could thus be indented accordingly ; then, we would manually check, and then we would print, from there.

- We buy a contender to UR being able to import UR files ; we would export the subtree to be printed / exported into a new UR file that would then be imported into the contender ; from there, we'd print in the right format, without any problem since, as said before, many such contenders do that all day long, the only difficulty here being to find a contender that imports UR files.

This is WEIRD !

Did I overlook something ?


As for my 20 or so items, I printed them two times : First, as they were exported from UR into rtf / Works, without the blank lines already ; then I manually compared the printout with the printout subtree, and in Works, I manually indented all that stuff accordingly ; if there had been the necessity to also number the items, I would have done that in Works, also.

Now imagine a professional's output of many, or just some, such little papers every day, leave alone bigger ones, 300 items instead of 23.

This is WEIRD.

As for the printing contender, it's not that easy, even TreePad does not seem to do it, it's just InfoQube that claims to import UR files - I don't know how that program works, if it works, or if it prints, then, it's been for many years now in a freeware alpha / beta / you name it status.

So, perhaps in SOME / ONE of the multiple UR export formats, the tree structure is preserved, and some contender then can correctly import that intermediate format ? XML / OML would perhaps be a solution, what do I know...

I hope kinook can tell us more as to the possibilities out there to get to professional results.
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Old 07-06-2011, 08:17 PM
kinook kinook is online now
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Old 07-11-2011, 06:15 AM
schferk schferk is online now
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kinook, do you really, seriously think a link to "how to export to html" is the adequate answer to all those probs I've stated here ? Am I supposed to import the html export into Works / Word, and then to print, or what am I supposed to do with the html file then ? Buy an html editor, spend 1 h on formatting and manual numbering for 20 pages, then print from there ? Seems short-eyed dollar bills've got the power indeed.
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