Fixed Width Editor Resizes With Zoom

Hey there,

Long time Scrivener user here. The latest release candidate has the bug listed in the title. Namely that my fixed width editor now resizes with zoom, rather than just the text. This is quite annoying as I previously changed zoom quite frequently.


Same here…

This is indeed by design and even reported as a bug previously. Scrivener for Mac and other editors work the same way. This ensures that your text fitted per line also stays the same until you hit the editor width.

Excellent news — thanks for fixing the bug, Tiho, it’s good to have it working properly before the release.

For the OP: the reason I find it useful to have the Mac (and now Windows) behaviour is this…

You need the resizing in circumstances when you’re trying to keep a sensible line length at different font-sizes, particularly when you use a project on more than one device. E.g I use Scrivener on both desktop (27" screen) and laptop (14") screen, and the comfortable screen size of the font differs widely. I also like a line-length of about 60-ish characters. In the Mac version I can keep the line-length the same across devices, and just adjust the zoom till the fixed width fits the screen nicely.

On Windows you couldn’t do that — changing the zoom meant you quickly have stupidly long or short line lengths and it’s really distracting… You could see the same bug in Page View Mode, when it was even more obvious. It’s great that it’s been fixed.

I’m OK with it. It’s just that it suddenly began to behave differently. That’s all.

Thank you,

Okay, I understand the line length argument. Playing around with it I see what you mean and how the new functionality would be useful. Thank you everyone for your responses.

However, in my case, it can be problematic. I am a mood writer. I have learning differences, and I use different typefaces, sizing, etc, to trigger particular writing moods. And so I am happy to tolerate the line length differential in some situations to retain a fixed width editor. In those times it would be beneficial to me to have the fixed width do just that, fix the width of the page. Otherwise perhaps the ‘fixed-width’ functionality should change name to ‘liquid-width’ which is how it is acting now in design terms?

I hope people can understand that while one person (you) find the old behaviour distracting, another (me) finds this new behaviour equally so. I was given to understanding that the ethos of Scrivener revolved (this is mentioned specifically in the new tutorial) around there being no one correct process, with each writer’s method equally valid. And Scrivener was the tool to enable this.

I too use several different devices, and I have/had the fixed width tailored for each device. Which is now broken unfortunately.

That’s no biggie really. But I would at least be grateful if I had the option. Is there a way for me to force the old behaviour please? I don’t mind tinkering to make it happen, as long as I can. Or perhaps a toggle could be implemented in the settings? That would offer the best of both worlds.

If not, and mine is truly edge case, I will have to find a way to simulate the behaviour some other way. Which i’m sure I can in time.

I am a huge fan of the software otherwise.

Many thanks.

Hi Tiho, thank you for your response on this issue. If you could read my post above and let me know your thoughts I would be grateful. Cheers.

It is fixed to the width of the text, not the size of your screen. How you think of it as being fixed or liquid is entirely subjective. I would have called how it worked before the “liquid” form, where text had no real solidity and just acted like ants in a box. Shake ’em up, you never know where they will fall when you zoom. :laughing:

Stuff like this unfortunately happens during beta testing—something is implemented partway, and one or two people get attached to how it worked, and then we finally fix it and someone doesn’t like it—then there are calls for more checkboxes to be added. Meanwhile in the case where the feature came out the way it was intended, I don’t think we’ve ever had a single user on the Mac side, in the years it has been this way now, ask to have it work the way you describe, or to add an option. Overwhelmingly, the only question we get regarding it is how to turn it off (some people consider a fixed width line to be a “waste” of screen space). And I’m sure we’ll get plenty of that from Windows users as well, we always knew we would with this as a default setting.

Sorry if that sounds dismissive—I’m sympathetic to it! I’ve grown attached to the way things worked in bug form before (a good example is how the No Style command used to be a well and truly hardcore formatting nuker, but now it tries to respect direct formatting. I’m the weird one for wanting that, and I’ll have to live with doing things the hard way to nuke a paragraph’s formatting now). But in a program with piles of options and far more to come, we can’t add more every time one person wants things another way, particularly if that way was never meant to be how it worked in the first place.

As for finding another approach that works similarly, unfortunately until the left/right top/bottom margin problem (and as well how it gets applied between elements in Scrivenings and inside inspector panes) is solved, there isn’t a good one. If you could set left/right independently then you could add a nice fat horizontal margin that didn’t impact vertical. Margins were always the old way of doing this, before fixed width was added.

Composition Mode works the way you want it by the way. And that strikes me as a better interface for mood writing anyway; you’re mileage may vary of course.

I guess there is one uniquely Scriveneresque way of doing this, use Ctrl+> and Ctrl+< instead of the zoom shortcuts, and select your text first. Font size doesn’t really matter too much in most cases—and zooming is really kind of just artifically displaying the font at the “wrong” size, so in terms of rendering quality and so forth, it’s about the same.

Or you could maybe just live with it for a while. Oftentimes I find the contrast is more of a problem than the actual new behaviour. A month later and I’ve already forgotten the thing I was so upset about and the way it now works is just fine and does all of the creative side-effects I got before. We sometimes feel a creative drop because our routine supports it; disrupt the routine and all we notice the disruption, not the fact that maybe the new behaviour isn’t actually less conducive to creativity.

I wouldn’t quite call it entirely subjective. The way I used the term fixed vs liquid was from the graphic design industry. Specifically in web design, where ‘fixed’ designs were targeted at a fixed resolution or width, in pixels, and liquid designs adjusted to the size of a window. The column is now definitely changing the amount of pixels it uses, and the width of the screen it takes up. But yes, I understand if you are defining it in terms of the line, rather than the ‘page’, then the way it is done would make sense. Part of the problem is I quite like to create a faux page view. And while I recognise that is not how the software is designed to be used, and Scrivener doesn’t hold with page view in principal, that was the best way I had of doing that. (I recognise the partial contradiction there, that it is behaving more like a fixed page that scales up and down with the new fix!)

And yes, I take your points. And they are all fair. You are also definitely right about the contrast of the new. It happens with all software, until you get used to it. And of course I understand you can’t add a feature for one particular user.

RE font size, definitely! I may go back to that method. That was how I was doing it until I managed to get it rigged up like this.

I will no doubt find a way to display things in a manner that suits my particular fangles, one way or the other.