[scribus] Newbie Mac User

John Culleton john at wexfordpress.com
Sat Aug 1 15:31:59 CEST 2009

On Friday 31 July 2009 03:01:09 pm John Morris wrote:
> Hi Sveninin,
>    Thanks for your thoughtful reply. My basic response is, Yes, I
> can do that, but that is not what I want to do. Read on for the
> details if you are interested.
> >Don't know how your Mac window manager treats Scribus
> >windows, but normally there should be 3 buttons in upper
> >right corner of the (Scribus) application window;
> >'Minimize', 'Restore down' and 'Close', respectively from
> >left to right. Those buttons are 'document-window-specific'
> >and should not be confused with the similar
> >'application-specific-ones' often above them (but last time
> >I used a Mac they were in the upper-left corner). By holding
> >the mouse pointer over them you should see their names in a
> >tooltip frame.
> >'Restore down' permits resizing multiple document windows
> >inside of the main (Scribus) application window.
>    Yes, those buttons are available in Scribus in the upper
> left-hand corner, where they are in just about every Mac
> application. While the tool-tips don't show (they do for the
> toolbar buttons), they are not needed because these buttons'
> functions are familiar across the interface.
>    However, these buttons don't help much with what I want to do.
> I don't just want to jump from one application to another or from
> one set of applications to another set. I need access to all my
> applications all the time in as flexible a way as possible.
> Sometimes I need to see a client's email message while working on
> a layout document. Sometimes I need to see a Word document while
> marking up a PDF file. Sometimes I need to see two layout
> documents at the same time while referring to a couple of email
> messages as well as a drawing in illustrator and an image in
> Photoshop. Those are the simple cases and it gets much more
> complicated from there. Aside from the wasted screen real estate
> of the extra window title bar, my main problem with the whole MDI
> is that it puts an opaque background behind all my Scribus
> windows. That means I can't arrange the Scribus windows in a
> nonrectangular fashion in order to see the little bit of an email
> message that I need behind those windows. If the main Scribus
> window were completely transparent where no windows and no
> toolbars appeared, I could just maximize the window and treat it
> as if it had toolbars outside the windows. That has worked fairly
> well for me in other applications.
>    For what it's worth, I don't really like Apple's new system of
> packing large toolbars at the top of each window. What a waste of
> space, I would much rather have a single toolbar with small icons
> that I can move independently of the window and can serve
> multiple windows. The one saving grace is that I can quickly hide
> the toolbar with a click on the button at the right edge of the
> title bar. Unfortunately, only some developers understand that I
> would do this to increase the size of the content area _of that
> window_ and so they shrink the whole window when I hide the
> toolbar.
> >Maybe I should not add this; I use a windowing system where
> >I can define as many 'Desktops' as I like; one for IRC and
> >E-mail and such, another for webbrowser and FTP-client,
> >third for managing local files and such, and a
> >fourth/fifth/sixth for graphical work. I can switch quickly
> >between desktops either vith a mouseclick or a keyboard
> >shortcut.
> >My systems are Linuxes; there must be a way to do multiple
> >desktops on a Mac?
>    I've not used Linux in any serious way, but I imagine this is
> similar to Spaces in Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5). As I understand it,
> it works reasonably well with well-behaved applications. However,
> I have heard that most versions of MS Office do not support
> Spaces very well. I don't use Spaces at all; my life is not that
> cut and dry. There is no one set of applications that I will be
> using to the exclusion of others such that I would ever want to
> make any of them less accessible.
>    I primarily get around by closing windows I don't need any
> more, hiding the applications I'm not using immediately,
> switching applications with command-Tab (similar to Ctrl-Tab in
> Windows and I'm sure Linux has an equivalent) and moving windows
> around when I need to see several from different applications.
>    I would like to make the switch from Macintosh to a good Linux
> distribution because I like Apple's choices less and less these
> days. However, the Mac OS is deeply embedded in my life and I
> don't have much time to explore other options these days. I
> imagine that the Mac OS will continue to be my main OS for at
> least the next five years.
> Best,
> John

I have four switchable desktops, each one measuring 1280 x 1024. I 
usually run a 640 x 480 or 800 x 600 viewport into the current 
desktop and ramble around on the larger desktop with the mouse.    
I can switch between desktops with one detent rotation of the mouse 
wheel on empty space.

Once you try Linux you are spoiled for anything else. 
John Culleton
Create Book Covers with Scribus/e-book $5.95

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