Export With Compiled Appearance

Hi all,

I have a feature request. You know how we can go to the File menu and choose Export > Files… and export the currently selected document in the Binder to a Word document or an RTF file if we choose? Well, wouldn’t it be neat if we could choose to Export a file, but, instead of Exporting it with the current Default Formatting applied to it, as it is in the Editor, we could instead Export the file as it might appear in the final Compiled version of the Draft? Just a thought.

—Andy H.

why don’t you just use compile to do that?

When you are in the compile dialog select only the document you want to see. Then compile to the selected output.

Is there more to what you are looking to achieve?

Actually, yes. I’m talking about a way to do this with as a few clicks as possible. As in, click, File menu. Click, export. Click, OK. Done. Not click, File menu; click Compile. Option-click, checkboxes. Click, document. Click, preset. Type filename. Choose directory. Click Compile. Wait.

If you do that all of the time (like I do in some projects), you set the compile group at the top of the Contents pane to “Current Selection”, and then leave the rest to either habit or macros. I take the latter course myself, so for me compiling what I’m working with is a matter of selecting it in the binder (same thing I’m going to do for export), and then hitting Shift-Opt-Cmd-E to trigger a macro. If on the other hand you’re working with a static selection of items you are compiling/exporting repeatedly, the use of a collection and then setting that collection to the compile source means you can even skip the binder clicking part.

  • Export: Select items by hand (click… click). click, File menu. Click, export. Click, OK. (surely after the first time you have to select a path other than just clicking OK though, right? Or are you happy with “~/Documents/Untitled/Untitled/Untitled/Untitled/Untitled/finally_my_files.rtf”?)
  • My way: Shortcut.

I can say though there aren’t any plans to add the huge amount of complexity and iteration to the exporter that exists in the compiler. Quite a lot goes on in there, and quite a lot of it benefits from the source being one single file, not bunches of them. There are a few exceptions and they are very carefully controlled environments—such as the production of an ePub, which is a bunch of files in a .zip basically.