Collaborating With Scrivener

JJ
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Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:03 pm Post

devinganger wrote:The design goals and requirements he made determined the technology choices he made (which, BTW, is one of the reasons why the Windows port has always been farther behind, as it doesn't have key pieces of the technology the Mac version does because the Windows OS doesn't offer them the way Mac OS X does).
Moreover the initial commitment to a cross-platform framework and Linux releases impaired the deployment of Windows DLLs and ActiveX components in SFW's development. So the team couldn't really make the most of Windows' capabilities.

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Jaysen
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Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:40 pm Post

devinganger wrote:If LamboCopters were easy, they'd already be a thing.

I haven't always agreed with you, but I LOVE this. I'm telling you it will be shamelessly stolen out of sheer lack of any better explanation of exactly why requirement creep is the spawn of all evil in the universe...

LamboCopter... Whuummpaaummmpaaummmpa

HA.
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devinganger
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Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:31 am Post

Jaysen wrote:
devinganger wrote:If LamboCopters were easy, they'd already be a thing.

I haven't always agreed with you, but I LOVE this. I'm telling you it will be shamelessly stolen out of sheer lack of any better explanation of exactly why requirement creep is the spawn of all evil in the universe...

LamboCopter... Whuummpaaummmpaaummmpa

HA.


You can't steal what is freely offered, my friend. :)
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lunk
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Wed Sep 13, 2017 6:35 am Post

"Let me introduce, the Lambocopter! The Swiss army knife equivalent when it comes to vehicles!"

... which means it isn't really good for anything, which Devinganger explained in a fantastic way. Specialized tools always out-perform multi-purpose tools when it comes to really quakified work. Ask any carpenter...
Including more and more specialized tools in a single software is like buying a carpenters belt filled with tools. It's likely to hold some of the tools you need but not all, and definitely also a lot of stuff you don't need.

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Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:28 pm Post

Lambocopters - I want one!
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that distant, almost inaudible clicking sound? That's one of your
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Wed Nov 15, 2017 4:57 am Post

A full, real time, collaboration tool a la GoogleDocs is not what seems required. But just a few tools to make collaboration less painful, and not requiring carefully coordinating when you are working on a large doc, would be very helpful - and for the most part, also help those of us who use Scrivener on our own docs on multiple devices on those occasions when something unforeseen happens. For example, a tool that let you do a sensible merge differences tool for resolving conflicts (eg like a lighter version of a tool like Beyond Compare), especially if it let you have practical defaults to configure for smart conflict handling. Not a total redesign, just much better handling of the issues that result from things like conflicts, and the issues that result from round trip edit cycles.

Not a total redesign to be a tool that has a different focus, just an acceptance that edit conflicts are not just a mistake to be avoided that can be handled as a clumsy error, but rather a regular thing that happens and should have some tools for it. That literally would be enough for me to use it for collaboration effectively.

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devinganger
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Wed Nov 15, 2017 6:40 am Post

davecake wrote:Not a total redesign to be a tool that has a different focus, just an acceptance that edit conflicts are not just a mistake to be avoided that can be handled as a clumsy error, but rather a regular thing that happens and should have some tools for it. That literally would be enough for me to use it for collaboration effectively.


Perhaps once 3.0 is out cross-platform and stabilized, KB might have time to consider the minimum viable product for such a feature that would work with the Scrivener philosophy -- but to do so, one would need a realistic set of scenarios painted out, not just the "it needs to be like Google Docs" that most people lead with.

What would such a conflict resolution experience in Scrivener look like to you?
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kewms
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Wed Nov 15, 2017 7:36 am Post

Scrivener 3 includes some new features to facilitate collaboration, notably an "Import and Merge" command to combine two versions of a project.

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Pmarsh
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Thu Nov 30, 2017 11:40 pm Post

One possible approach is to explore the use cases around collaboration. You may find users are wanting to use your software for purposes that you had not initially considered. You could then perhaps bring out editions that catered to specific needs that maybe removed some features and enabled others such as real time collaboration. It may be a way of growing into new markets while not destroying the original strong product. Or alternatively you may want to think about developing Scapple further as a collaborative tool with greater workflow integration into Scrivener
I think there are a lot of features in Scrivener and Scapple that could make it a great qualitative research synthesis tool for example in fields like UX and service design. Collaborative working around inputing data and arranging being key in these fields.

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kewms
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Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:26 am Post

Real time collaboration in particular is an enormous technical lift, in a space where the number one competitor (Google Docs) has essentially unlimited resources and gives the product away for free, and the number two competitor (Office 365) also has essentially unlimited resources and has had a stranglehold on the enterprise market for more than 20 years. There may be a compelling business case, but I haven't seen it.

The problem with special editions generally is that each requires additional development and support effort, while getting further and further away from the core needs of our core audience. The less "Scrivener-like" the proposed application is, the harder it is to see what we might bring to the table.

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Merovech
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Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:42 pm Post

kewms wrote:The reasons for this have been discussed in detail elsewhere. Briefly, (1) other cloud services do not support the level of access to the file structure that is needed for Scrivener projects, and (2) what happens to your cloud-stored project if you lose access to the internet with 4,000 unsaved words in your computer's memory? Personally, I have no interest in a writing program that *requires* an internet connection to use it.

If you find that Google Docs is a better fit for your needs, feel free to use it. I wonder, though, why no one is pointing out that, after years of development with a much larger team, Google Docs has nothing that even resembles Scrivener's organizational and editing tools for large documents. They are different tools with different goals.


The Node.JS development world has addressed local and cloud sync and allows local filesystem access (see Electron). It also allows the same code base to be ported simultaneously to different platforms (desktop, mobile, web). You wouldn't need an Internet connection, but it could address a lot of the request here. There are also a lot of pre-built plugins that would simplify development.

It would be a massive change to Scrivener. But, looking at the underlying file structure (I'm a geek), KB has a strong foundation for such a move. That is, a lot of the design decisions I would make are there.

You are right, Scrivener provides document project management capability not readily available anywhere else. Google Docs solves a different problem than you are solving. That doesn't mean there's not a market in the middle that you're not better situated to satisfy than them...and that someone else won't fill it.

I used Scriv for my first novel, and part of my 2nd. I started looking at another toolchain because Scriv had some gaps. Scrive3 seems to be filling the very specific gaps I had (styles being one). Y'all's exploration of Android fills another one. I'm coming back on Scriv3 (and enjoying it so far, KB did a fine job).

The one gap I see is the ability to collaborate with a professional editor, which is not synchronous editing.

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kewms
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Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:55 pm Post

Merovech wrote:The Node.JS development world has addressed local and cloud sync and allows local filesystem access (see Electron). It also allows the same code base to be ported simultaneously to different platforms (desktop, mobile, web). You wouldn't need an Internet connection, but it could address a lot of the request here. There are also a lot of pre-built plugins that would simplify development.


I know a few people (senior software developers, not Scrivener-related) who refuse to even consider any job that requires them to use Node.js. It's an ugly, ugly development environment in a number of ways. Porting all of Scrivener to it sounds like a pretty radical approach to me.

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Merovech
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Fri Dec 08, 2017 12:33 pm Post

Perhaps true. Node.JS is sort of my crib for the greater trend in programming towards Javascript (Angular, React, etc.). Node has the advantage of having access to the file system. Certainly a port would be a huge undertaking.

At any rate, enjoying Scrivener again with v.3.