[scribus] Master Pages for New Users and the Wiki

Barry McKenna bmcken at pobox.com
Wed Oct 10 18:12:01 UTC 2012

"Master Pages Issues" on a Windows install, as I have now discovered and 
learned with help here:

Importing Master Pages to Another Document (This presumes one has 
already created Master Pages in some other document)

1. Create new document.

2. Edit > Master Pages > "Edit Master Pages" dialog appears containing 
four buttons, one of which is the active "Import Master Pages From 
Another Document button"

3. Select document from dialog which opens when the "Import Master Pages 
 From Another Document" button is clicked.

4. After selecting document from above dialog, then select the Master 
Page desired from that other document.

5. Click the Import Button on the Import Master Pages From Another 
Document dialog.

6. The new document changes, reflecting the importing of the Master 
Page, and the "Edit Master Pages" dialog now lists the imported Master 
Page and remains above the new document which currently reflects the 
changes imported from the Master Page From Another Document.

However -- and I think this is the key issue in the logic/usability of 
this feature -- the "Edit Master Pages" dialog now contains the Imported 
Master Page, the new document reflects the changes. The only option now 
is to click the Windows dialog's 'X' icon button. When doing so, the new 
document reverts to its original state, losing the Imported Master 
Page's properties.

This is not how Windows users are accustomed to using dialogs which 
change some properties: After importing properties or changing some 
properties, there should be, according to Windows conventions, and "OK" 
button which when clicked applies the imported or changed properties. 
However, in this case/design another step is required, which is not 

7. Page > Apply Master Page > "Apply Master Page" dialog appears listing 
in the drop-down edit box the current (Normal) Master Page. In order to 
apply the desired Master Page -- which has been imported but no longer 
shows as applied in the document because it has reverted to Normal when 
the  "Edit Master Pages" dialog's 'X' button (the only option at that 
point) is clicked -- the drop-down edit box then needs to be opened and 
the desired Imported Master Page applied.

I can see, potentially, some rationale for this scheme, since the "Apply 
Master Page" dialog allows for applying the Imported Master Page to 
"Current Page" and options to apply it to other pages.

However, once a Master Page has been imported after step 5 as referred 
to above, it would make sense to me that a previously greyed-out button 
for "Apply Master Page" on the "Edit Master Pages" dialog (but a button 
which is currently non-existing) would, after completing step 5 above, 
now appear potentially active, and then the "Apply Master Page" dialog 
could open by clicking its now active button(and also closing the "Edit 
Master Pages" dialog beneath it), and then the relevant pages could be 
selected as provided on the "Apply Master Page" dialog.

Of course, now that I understand how this works, I can "use" it, but as 
for normal "usability" it does not seem to me to be conventional to have 
an imported property appear and then disappear when a dialog is closed, 
requiring the user to "know" that a separate Main Menu item must now be 
accessed in order to actually apply the Master Page, which did appear to 
be applied, but then disappeared when the "Edit Master Pages" dialog was 
closed by (having no other option) clicking the 'X' icon button.


What the Wiki is Missing

I suggest that the following page is missing -- at least for a Windows 
user -- some key information:


The Wiki states that "You can also copy a Master Page from another 
document by clicking on Import master pages from another document 
button, which opens the Import Master Page window (Picture 5)."

However, unless one is familiar with the "Edit Master Pages" dialog and 
knows that it is that dialog which will have a button to open the 
"Import Master Page," the logic is not self-evident.

In addition, after providing those missing instructions, there should be 
immediate notification that the user then needs to go to the Main Menu 
and select Page > Apply Master Page in order to apply the Master Page 

It is not intuitive that one should understand that by skipping over the 
"Plan B:" section, and then the "Double sided, 3-fold and 4-fold Pages" 
section one then arrives at the requisite "Applying Master Pages" section.

At the least this "Applying Master Pages" section should make explicit 
mention that if you have just Imported a Master Page, then this is how 
you actually can use it/apply it to your current document.

I don't have any Wiki editing experience, nor is my system set up to 
give comparably schemed dialog snips to insert with in the Wiki. My 
apologies for that, this appears to be the limit of my contribution on 
this issue.


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