[Mac S 3] Widow / Orphan control for PDF/print

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Silverdragon
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Wed Dec 06, 2017 12:51 am Post

Widow and Orphan control is available when compiling to word processor formats, but not when compiling to PDF or print. But if I'm compiling to Word, I don't need widow/orphan control, since Word can do that for me. Where I really need it is when compiling to PDF or Print, where I don't have an intermediate step to clean up this formatting.

Would this be practical to implement?
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devinganger
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Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:02 am Post

I wonder if that's because what Scriv is doing is marking the output with the code for "protect this bit", not actually trying to do the placement on page like it would be with PDF/print.
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Silverdragon
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Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:26 am Post

It may well be so, but I thought it couldn't hurt to ask... :D
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KB
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Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:50 am Post

Widow and orphan control is an insanely difficult and non-trivial task. I spent about three months on this in the past, and even took out a tech support incident with Apple and got help from an Apple text engineer - all to no avail. The upshot of all of that work was the "Keep with Next" feature, nothing else. The problem is that you aren't just fixing the current container (page) - pushing down a widow - but you also have to look ahead to the next container for orphans, and then re-layout the previous container if necessary. It turns into a recursive mess. Add to this the complex code required by end-of-page footnotes, which already has to tweak container space and make sure that, in reducing the text on the page to make room for footnotes, it doesn't push to the next page the text associated with the footnote, and the job of implementing widows and orphans is now even more complex than it was when I last looked at this.

So, I'm afraid that this is unlikely to come any time soon, if ever. Out of interest, though, why do you want it? As you say, you can export to Word if you really need this. And I flicked through the books on my shelves - novels, mostly - and I couldn't find one that had definite widow/orphan control. The vast majority had widows and orphans liberally throughout.

All the best,
Keith
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Silverdragon
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Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:15 pm Post

Thanks for your detailed answer, Keith. Dang, a 3 month rabbit hole and nothing to show for it, eh? No wonder you decided to leave it to the dedicated word processors and layout apps.

As to why I want it, put it down to mild OCD. :D It's a "nice to have", but if it really twists my knickers I'll fire up something to post-process, as you suggest.
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  • Mac Scrivener 3.0.3, MacBook Air 11, MacOS 10.13.6 (High Sierra)
  • IOS Scrivener 1.1.5, iPhone 6s, iPad Air 2, iOS 12.0

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lkgeorge
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Mon Jun 04, 2018 5:38 pm Post

Apologies for tagging onto this past thread; I have one quick additional question. @KB, I'm trying to use the Keep with Next function, but I'm not sure where it's valid. Any additional comments about where/how to use it? Thanks --
p.s. I'm interested in the question because I'm trying to go directly from Scrivener PDF output to paperback.

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KB
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Mon Jun 04, 2018 5:56 pm Post

That setting is generally best for titles. It will keep the last line of the paragraph it is associated with together with the next paragraph, pushing it down if necessary. So it's a good way of ensuring that titles appear on the same page as the text that follows them.
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lkgeorge
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Tue Jun 05, 2018 5:09 pm Post

Thanks @KB!
Our first two levels of titles are document titles (visible in the Binder; see attached), and I haven't found a way to set "keep with next" for them. Suggestions?
Thanks again --
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KB
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Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:01 pm Post

You do that via Compile - add the "Keep with Next" setting to the title in the Section Layout options.

All the best,
Keith
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lkgeorge
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Tue Jun 05, 2018 7:27 pm Post

KB wrote:You do that via Compile - add the "Keep with Next" setting to the title in the Section Layout options.

All the best,
Keith


Great, thank you! (Still learning...)