Insertion at quotation marks misplaced

(I’ve searched the Mac OS X forums for any other reports of this but can’t see any.)

Sometimes when editing a quote or speech at the end of a paragraph (*) and the insertion point is immediately before the closing quote mark(**) after typing a few characters the insertion point gets moved to beyond the quote. For example, I want to change



this is the end"

but what I often get is

this i"s the end

I can’t work out the conditions under which this can be reproduced reliably. Other than to say that it occurs enough to be frustrating. It appears to happen when I’ve moved the insertion point around within the current document.

(*) I think I have seen this happen within paragraphs too.
(**) doesn’t appear to matter if the mark is a single or double quotation mark. Both are affected.

Technical details

Scrivener v2.5 (25239) (with “Smart Quotes” enabled)
Mac OS X 10.8.5 on Mac mini with 8Gb of RAM.
AMD Radeon HD 6630M (graphics card standard for a Mac mini (of the time))
500Gb hard drive (with 430GB free space)

Other applications usually running concurrently: Firefox (now using the awful 29.0.1 update) with a bunch of Add-ons and Evernote 5.5.1 and sometimes others.
I run Scrivener all the time; it is listed in my Login Items settings and I rarely, if ever exit from it other than to reboot (and reboots only happen when there’s an OS X security update). I’m the only user of the machine so i don’t log out. The machine has been on, I’ve been logged in and Scrivener has been running continuously for 18 days right now. [I use Scrivener too often to quii and restart it.]

You mention a “bunch of add-ons”, are any of them typing aids, like spell check or text expansion? I know there is a slight (and largely benign) delay when triggering a substitution, so a quote will take a second to be swapped into the character that is facing in the right direction—but I have never seen or heard of any issues like this, where the cursor skips over a character.

It might be worth performing a safe boot (restart with the Shift key held down, shortly after the chime and until you’re fully logged in). This should disable all third-party extensions and prohibit any software in the start up sequence from executing. In other words, you should be left with nothing but OS X’s critical functions and Scrivener running.

Although, you may want to just try a normal boot first, if it has been 18+ days. Macs aren’t as good with uptime as they used to be, in my experience.

Ah no and they are all specific to Firefox (ad blocking, tracker cookie squelchers, HTML debug/analysis tools, and site-specific resrtucturer)s. Oh and one to revert the awful Firefox 29.0.1 to 28.0.1 presentation.

The only Mac OS X “extension” running is Evernote’s quick note creator. Otherwise there’s very little non-Apple stuff running. The only other “extension” is the LibreOffice updater but I don’t use LibreOffice very often (Scrivener creates good enough .doc/.docx files for my purpose) so it is unlikely to interfere. It was not running the last time I noticed this odd behaviour.

There are a few text substitutions defined in the system services list. No extras are defined there. I prefer and rely upon applications, such as Scrivener itself, to deal with auto-correct and even then I don’t have (m)any enabled in Scrivener.

Oh, okay, Firefox shouldn’t really shouldn’t have any impact on the Mac text engine, so that’s all fine.

I don’t believe Evernote installs any extensions however, those are deep level things usually added by specialist software that need to add features to the OS (not your typical applications, but an audio editing suite might install advanced audio systems, network monitoring or firewall software may install extensions, etc.). I could be wrong, but I think Evernote just installs Services, and those won’t impact typing either.

So at any rate, I take it the shift-boot didn’t resolve the problem?

If not, what I would test is TextEdit. See if you can reproduce the problem in a rich text TextEdit window with smart quotes enabled. That will be using the same text engine and smart quote detection that we do, so in theory if it happens there, it’s not really a Scrivener issue but something with the Mac.

Well blow me down with a feather! I did manage to find a bug in Scrivener a few years ago. Now TextEdit does the same thing!!! So I have to figure out how to report this to Apple instead.

But please, pretty please, don’t ever suggest I use TextEdit again. It’s horrible!!!