"Manuscript", software for crafting scientific papers

http://www.manuscriptsapp.com Seems to be fully integrated with Papers app and depicts an userfriendly interface.

I have been testing for a week or so, and it’s promising but not ready, yet. It has two strong points (once they get it to work as planned): outline of the paper and inclusion of references.

In my view it will be useful in the final stages when you prepare for submission, and especially if you change journal close to submission. The app can then adapt the format of the article just by choosing a new journal in a dialogue.

The weak point so far is that no useful journals (from my point of view) have been included in the templates and that the handling of the references doesn’t work as expected.

So, I got an offer for Manuscripts today via Paddle. It looked interesting–a Scrivener knock-off, only simpler. Then I noticed that it is by the team that brought us Papers.

That is one of the most promising, and one of the most frustrating, pieces of productivity software ever. They release regular “updates” that break basic features, have worse UIs, and hog CPU. The feedback in their user forum became so vehement that they took it private during the version 1 to 2. I think that things have gone even further downhill since they were bought up by Springer. I still use Papers 2 (since it brought back citation sucking), but abandoned efforts to upgrade to Papers 3 or try to get the iPad version to work.

So I don’t think I’m going to invest any time in this new app. It’s kind of frightening, really: the big for-profit publishers who already own everything we write (and sell it back to us) are now trying to corner the writing process as well. I’d consider selling my soul–but it would have to be for a great piece of software.

Although I must agree on the nasty support system for Papers, my experience with Papers 3 has improved after version 3.3. Thus, huge databases seems stable, synchronizing several computers works and I’m not suffering issues with the iPad version anymore. My personal experience with Microsoft Word,…well,… that is a true nightmare :imp: :imp: :imp: . Documents becoming non-editable, figures that waltz around, page numbering seems a lotto :confused: . I just wish scrivener would handle a little better some DTP tasks tables setup, images positioning … then I could finally dump Word :smiley:

If you want to dump Word — until Keith can find the time to program a proprietary table setup as well as a graphics engine within the text engine :smiley: — have you given either Nisus Writer Pro a whirl or Mellel or even Pages?

NWP sits best with Scrivener in my experience as its native format is RTF, but exports to DOC/DOCX/OTF/EPUB etc. if that is your need. It does image positioning pretty well in my experience, and tables work well for me — except badly designed complex tables imported from Word can be frustrating. It has very powerful search and replace and a very powerful macro language.

I haven’t used Mellel for real for a long time, but it is very capable, and Pages … well, for me that’s a last resort.

My tuppence worth.

Mr X