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      CommentAuthorpsass
    • CommentTimeApr 12th 2012
     
    I think Ulysses is a great program, but only half done rigtht. This post is about what i find lacking.
    The front end is good, where you write what ever you want to write. I like the no distraction approach, and how you can build a complicated project with multiple documents, each withe its notes.
    The problem comes when you want to export it to print. The export part just doesn't cut it. It seems to me that it is so rudimentory that best option is to export your project as simple text, and then style it in some other application.
    For instance LaTeX. I am interested,but have only put my toe in the water. Why isn't there a XeTeX template. With only LaTeX and friends, you are forced to type in only asci. I am danish, so I need æ, ø, and å. Even quotation marks are out of reach. You have to hard code them, if that is the proper term.
    The other styled options lose their typographic styles once exported so it is just like styled text in what ever program you are importing in to, whether Word or something else.
    There is no support for open type. For instance if you want to use the typeface's mediavel numbers, you are out of luck. There is no way to choose that. You want to choose what kind of ligatures to apply. Too bad. Ornaments or any other kind of special caracters? forget it.
    In short. If an export function should have any meaning, it should be able to create beautiful bookpages. If not, what is the point. Then it is better just to export as simple text and import in some other application and do the rest. That way Ulysses is only a gloryfied version of TextEdit.
    PS. If somebody have a XeTeX template, I would appreciate it.
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      CommentAuthorniklas
    • CommentTimeApr 12th 2012
     
    Hm. While I agree that there are some problems with the exporters, calling Ulysses a glorified version of TextEdit seems a bit over the top ;-) There is quite a bit more to it than that, don't you think?

    The exporters are quite capable IMO, and can produce very good results. Still, of course, there are issues. One that you didn't mention is the complexity; it is difficult to quickly set up an export template that gives a nice result. Pre-made templates would go some way of solving this.

    It's been a while since I used the LaTeX exporter, but when I did, extended character sets was not a problem. I am Swedish myself and åäö worked fine. I am far from a LaTeX expert though, so I have no idea why you experience this. Nowadays, I just use the simpler PDF exporter when I need something good-looking to give the editor, or to print. It has its limitations, but in general it works fine I think.

    I agree that there is a fundamental problem that all the semantics are lost during export to Word/RTF. I have learnt to live with it but it is a problem, especially considering that this is such a strong focus of the editor itself.

    If you need publication-qyuality output, you certainly have to expect to do some post-processing of the file in a word processor, and if you need to go through this process a lot, I can see that it can be a pain. As for myself, I typically don't do that much, so it doesn't bug me so much. I export quite rarely, and then mainly simple drafts for editors or others to read, as the actual type-setting is done by the publisher anyway.

    In any case, I have gotten the impression that this will all change quite drastically with v3 of Ulysses, at least as far as complexity and ease of set-up goes. See their [preview site](http://ulyssesapp.com/devblog/) for *some* more info on this.

    Cheers, Niklas