Bookends 12.5 Feedback

A place for users to ask each other questions, make suggestions, and discuss Bookends.
Nhaps
Posts: 214
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:05 pm

Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Nhaps »

Thanks for the many bug fixes and improvements. Here are some introductory remarks.

1. Reference pane: how can I place main fields on top and less important on bottom?
Is there a way to increase the line size of some fields? This woud avoid having to scroll down with the arrow keys

2. Minor preference: Back to the Old library icon. The new highlighter does not conform to the name of the software. It appears to me that the new logo is more geared to notetaking, and that's not the main feature of BE.

3. Google Search now working fine, thanks.

4. Preview window is double spaced for Bibtex. Let us know how to switch to single, and whether indent is possible for long titles.
Last edited by Nhaps on Sun Feb 08, 2015 6:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

iandol
Posts: 327
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 2:31 pm

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by iandol »

I don't think a set of old crusty books provides a better metaphor of how BE is actually used :shock: But of course it *is* called bookends which isn't the most apt metaphor for what BE does either! :P I think the highlighter does bring to mind reading through literature and doing research, which is much more apt for my use of BE than books on a shelf.

swmartin1960
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2014 3:59 pm

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by swmartin1960 »

I agree on the thumbs up for the new icon. It doesn't speak to me of note-taking but of careful reading and marking text, which is precisely what a pdf-reference manager is. Visually the appearance is much more pleasing, and I look forward to checking more the "under-the-hood" features. Nice job!

Jon
Site Admin
Posts: 8736
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2004 6:27 pm
Location: Bethesda, MD
Contact:

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Jon »

1. The order is not configurable. The most important fields are already at the top. User1-User4 are at the bottom. This pane is intended for manual data entry, it really should not be your resource for viewing all of the data. That's what the Summary view is for, and you can configure that to show whatever you want, in whatever order you want.

2. I loved the old icon, but it's no longer appropriate in a Yosemite/iOS world. The new icon metaphor, BTW, is showing markup of a bibliography. Bookends does way too many things for one icon to convey it all. We thought this was a good metaphor for academic research.

4. I may have overdone the line height. I'll take a look.

Jon
Sonny Software

Nhaps
Posts: 214
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:05 pm

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Nhaps »

My problem with the new logo is the brightness of the (white) paper or bibliography. Coloured or dark color icons are more pleasing, less intrusive when you're working close to the dock.

Jon
Site Admin
Posts: 8736
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2004 6:27 pm
Location: Bethesda, MD
Contact:

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Jon »

You mean like TextEdit or Reminders ? :-)

Download 12.5 again, BTW. I reverted the formatted view pane to the old rendering (the lines are closer together).

Jon
Sonny Software

Nhaps
Posts: 214
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:05 pm

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Nhaps »

Yes, TextEdit and Reminders are too white for my taste. I solved this by using the old BE icns, looks fine now the way I like it. Already, I downloaded it again and the preview looks great! Thank you.

Nhaps
Posts: 214
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:05 pm

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Nhaps »

AFAIK there's no need for a note field if you got the notes panel available. We could get some real estate with the notes field out of the primary reference window.

Jon
Site Admin
Posts: 8736
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2004 6:27 pm
Location: Bethesda, MD
Contact:

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Jon »

No, this was (of course) done on purpose. Some people don't use Notes (or do so sparingly), others invest and enormous amount of effort on Notes. So we have an option for both -- a field on the main tab, and a tab devoted to Notes for the heavy users.

As I said above, if you're using the edit pane to view your data "you're doing it wrong". Use the Concise View for that.

Jon
Sonny Software

Nhaps
Posts: 214
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:05 pm

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Nhaps »

I had understood what you said first, but for now I am having to edit a lot of references which forces me to scroll up and down the edit pane. I'm gonna try using Concise/Summary View more in the next weeks.

Jon
Site Admin
Posts: 8736
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2004 6:27 pm
Location: Bethesda, MD
Contact:

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Jon »

Note that pressing tab will also take you through the fields and automatically scroll.

Also, if you're only editing one field, the Concise view works well for that.

Jon
Sonny Software

brianogilvie
Posts: 16
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2005 5:45 am
Location: Paris, France, and Amherst, Mass.

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by brianogilvie »

I'm somewhat taken aback by the decision to eliminate the standalone reference window, and curious about why it was eliminated. One of the advantages of a windowing operating system has been multiple application windows. (I have Mail.app set to open messages in a new window for that reason.) In Bookends, I would often have the reference window open for editing and use the live search in the Library window to find something else.

If the reference window is gone for good, would it then be possible to put the additional fields at the bottom of the main panel? It's now scrolling, so I don't see any UI advantage to having a separate tab for call number, ISBN, language, etc. But I would prefer to see restored the option to edit references in a separate window.

Jon
Site Admin
Posts: 8736
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2004 6:27 pm
Location: Bethesda, MD
Contact:

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Jon »

The decision was made because maintaining two independent ways of getting at the references for editing was cumbersome, introduced bugs (every feature accessed from the library window had to be coded to make it available from the reference window), and became a detriment to moving forward. That window was a holdover from the original Bookends and was outdated quite a while ago.

Unless you're entering data, the way to view reference metadata is in the Concise view pane on the right (which you can configure in preferences).

As for adding all the fields to the first pane -- sure that can be done, but why? Now, on a desktop machine at least, the window can be made tall enough that you can see everything at a glance. If we add 16 more fields, that's *lots* of scrolling for everyone. By keeping them in a separate tab you can see all fields in two tabs (and if you use Command-1 and Command-2 to switch between the tabs it's instantaneous).

Jon
Sonny Software

brianogilvie
Posts: 16
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2005 5:45 am
Location: Paris, France, and Amherst, Mass.

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by brianogilvie »

Thanks for your reply. I get the difficulty of maintaining code for separate windows. A small reference window was useful for entering publication data from a PDF document without obscuring part of the PDF window in the background, but I can find a workaround.
Jon wrote:As for adding all the fields to the first pane -- sure that can be done, but why? Now, on a desktop machine at least, the window can be made tall enough that you can see everything at a glance. If we add 16 more fields, that's *lots* of scrolling for everyone. By keeping them in a separate tab you can see all fields in two tabs (and if you use Command-1 and Command-2 to switch between the tabs it's instantaneous).
I primarily use laptops, and even on my desktop with its 27" monitor, I prefer to keep windows as small as is compatible with doing my work, so that I can have a word processor (or Scrivener) window open, Bookends open, DevonThink Pro open, and see all simultaneously without having to command-tab between them. In that case, I'm already scrolling through fields while editing, and tabbing to the next field requires less cognitive load than tabbing from the last field back to the first, remembering that the command to switch to the additional fields tab is ⌘2, and then hitting that.

I realize that I'm in a minority in the world of full-screen apps and iOS.

Jon
Site Admin
Posts: 8736
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2004 6:27 pm
Location: Bethesda, MD
Contact:

Re: Bookends 12.5 Feedback

Post by Jon »

A few points.

You can have the pdf open in the lower pane and refer to it while entering data in the reference pane.

I understand why you say you're already tabbing, why not tab through all fields. But we're talking about a total of 34 fields. Rather than tabbing 31 times to get to DOI, for example, you'd press Command-2 and click in DOI (or tab 12 times). It may take a little bit of relearning, but I think you'll agree it's better when you've used that for a bit.

Change is tough, and I knew there would be some objections from old time users (which is why I created a thread in December to explain why this is happening and to get feedback). I've seen my share of comments about how the Bookends UI lagged behind similar apps, some of that being because we held onto conventions that were no longer current (like having separate windows for separate functions, something that we've been addressing in updates over that last year or two). One of the goals of this update was to modernize the UI, and I think we have done that (which is not to say that we won't be doing more in the future).

Jon
Sonny Software

Post Reply