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FocusWriter is all writing, no distractions

FocusWriter is all writing, no distractions

Posted Nov 7, 2010 1:34 UTC (Sun) by cmccabe (guest, #60281)
Parent article: FocusWriter is all writing, no distractions

> Experienced Linux users might prefer to stick with their text editor of
> choice, even if participating in something like NaNoWriMo. But this is the
> sort of application that makes Linux attractive to a wider set of users
> who may not be interested in using a "text editor" — even one as simple as
> gedit — to try to produce the next Great American Novel.

I can understand why people want these features. I feel like some wheels are being reinvented here, though. Why not just develop a .vimrc or set of emacs macros? LibreOffice is also configurable, although to a lesser extent.

Like a lot of other programs, FocusWriter and its competitors are simple now, but will grow and grow over time. Once they implement all the features users demand, they won't be any simpler or easier to use than vi or emacs.

But, hey, whatever works. Maybe I'm just out of touch with what authors want.


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FocusWriter is all writing, no distractions

Posted Nov 7, 2010 9:13 UTC (Sun) by boudewijn (subscriber, #14185) [Link]

<p>As soon as you suggest that authors develop a .vimrc or a set of emacs macros, yes, you really are out of touch with what authors want. And a text editor with its main focus on developing software, like vim or emacs, is a completely different thing from a word processor with a focus on writing prose. I doubt focuswriter will gain syntax highlighting, a built-in adventure game or support for ctags any time soon.

FocusWriter is all writing, no distractions

Posted Nov 14, 2010 17:44 UTC (Sun) by hein.zelle (guest, #33324) [Link]

> As soon as you suggest that authors develop a .vimrc or a set of emacs
> macros, yes, you really are out of touch with what authors want. And a
> text editor with its main focus on developing software, like vim or
> emacs, is a completely different thing from a word processor with a focus
> on writing prose. I doubt focuswriter will gain syntax highlighting, a
> built-in adventure game or support for ctags any time soon.

I think the intention of that remark wasn't that the prose writers develop these rc files, but that someone (like the developer of focuswriter) does. And that does sound like a reasonable idea, to me at least. Of all the features mentioned so far, the primary one I can't immediately accomplish with emacs is to make it full screen without the bottom status bar, and a less-than-fullscreen text area. I'm sure people with a bit more experience could do that fairly easily. Would it really be such a bad idea to develop a prose-mode for existing editors?

I'm not saying focuswriter is a bad idea, but it seems that a lot of (very good!) editing functionality is very useful once you get familiar with it. Proper search functions, hot keys, reliability, etc. Those must be hard to develop "the right way" for a new project. Seems easier to start from a program that already has all that.

FocusWriter is all writing, no distractions

Posted Nov 16, 2010 5:01 UTC (Tue) by jschrod (subscriber, #1646) [Link]

Yes, but has it `move by sentences', `delete sentences', `transpose characters', `transpose words', and other actions on semantic structures that I miss so dearly when I have to work with other, less capable, editors?
Almost unlimited undo?

A good editor is hard to design and hard to realize, even for thus seemingly basic things as inputting plain text.

FocusWriter is all writing, no distractions

Posted Nov 16, 2010 8:45 UTC (Tue) by mp (subscriber, #5615) [Link]

And does it allow you to "untangle the hairball [of a novel], by refactoring its deep structure"? Whatever exactly that means, apparently this is something a working novelist needs.


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