Linking the binder to the editor

First post to the forums! I’m a long-time user. Scrivener was one of the main reasons I bought a Mac. I’ve written a novel and a dozen short stories, all within it’s very fine walls. One thing has irritated me, enough for me to mention it.

The selection in the binder does not synchronise with what’s in the editor. The reasons are detailed in the knowledge base. I get them, sometimes I want it like this too, and I appreciate the time taken to lay out the reasoning. I’m sure it’s been discussed on the forum too, but I couldn’t find anything and anyway I hope I have something to add.

Here’re my reasons: I use the binder to locate myself in my work. If I ever get into a piece of writing, I can glance at the binder to remind myself of where I am. On those occasions when this link is broken (because I’ve navigated to the file from some route other than the binder), I feel un-anchored, and this is jarring. I have to try and remember the shortcut to synchronise (Ctrl+Shift+8), and then locate myself back in my work, and then try and remember what I was writing. I find Windows Explorer similarly annoying. I appreciate that not everyone has this workflow.

I’m also a software developer. Although the Eclipse IDE isn’t perfect (ha!), it does have a feature that solves this exact problem and provides flexibility. It’s this button on the Project Explorer (the main nav pane):

Sometimes I have it turned on, and everything is in sync all the time, and sometimes I turn it off, so the Project Explorer state remains as I have left it. Of all the damn buttons in Eclipse it’s one of the ones I use reasonably frequently. I would really love something like this in Scrivener. Or something in Options to turn on the link permanently because actually that’d be my preference.

Is this up for discussion or has this ship long sailed? Thanks for taking the time to read this.


This one has long since sailed, sorry. It comes up from time to time, but it’s something that we’re not going to implement, as detailed in the Knowledge Base. As you note, the “Reveal in Binder” feature will show you where you are in the binder if you need to know. The interface works from left-to-right, and as mentioned in the KB, if the binder followed the editor selection, it would be forever expanding items you have closed just to show them, which would be hugely irritating. Once you have the hang of the shortcut, it takes no time at all to reveal where you are in the binder if you need it, and this is far better than the alternative of having the binder expanding every time you navigate. There are many times I don’t want the binder to show what I’m currently looking at, so that I can easily access a different group of documents. (You’d also have the binder zooming around just because you clicked into a different editor.)

I do appreciate that your suggestion is to have this as an option, rather than as standard behaviour, though, so I won’t completely rule that out and will give the option some consideration.

All the best,

Thanks for the reply Keith, and for considering the suggestion. The zooming around can be hugely irritating in Eclipse, and it opens deep trees and you lose the structure you set up, and this is another kind of getting lost. But I still find myself using the little button.

It just occurred to me: what about a toggleable Action that I could add to my Toolbar? The default could remain the same for everyone: no linking, no extra visual clutter. But the functionality would be there for me, and the others who would like it

It’s great that Scrivener comes from a personal vision, not by committee. Please do keep it that way. Thanks again for the reply.

If it got added, a better place would be the binder footer - but as I say, I am still pondering upon it. :slight_smile: