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  BBEdit 8.0 -- A Developer's Viewpoint
Subject:   The Document drawer
Date:   2004-12-21 17:52:38
From:   pjmm
This thing takes focus because it allows useful navigation: if you have, say, 10 documents in the drawer and wish to change to "script.pl" just use
option-tab to send focus to the drawer, then enter "s" or "sc" or whatever to focus on the required document. Hit return to start editing that thing. Much easier than 4 or more hits of the command-option-] combination. (Another nit re the document drawer: the up/down command keys should be cyclic.)

As always, the barrier to a new user is going to be the ever-burgeoning number of dollars required to purchase a first copy of BBEdit. Had I not been in on the ground floor I'm not sure I'd be ponying up the $US200 that they're now asking (that being said: every time there's a major upgrade I say "no more money for you guys", and then end up sending the cash in a month or two anyway...). Even the old trick of "cross-upgrading" from BBEdit-Lite or near neighbour seems to have been snatched away.

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  • brian d foy photo The Document drawer
    2004-12-21 22:40:46  brian d foy | O'Reilly AuthorO'Reilly Blogger [View]

    I thought that's what keyboard focus in the doc drawer should do, but it didn't do it for me. I went back and tried it just now to make sure, and it still doesn't do anything (and I've made sure the right preference box is checked). I can use the arrow keys to go up and down the the list, though.

    I'd really like to cycle through the list of files, though. If I press the down arrow while at the bottom of the list, I want to be at the top of the list, just like you say.

    Oh well.
    • The Document drawer
      2004-12-22 07:04:43  -RDM- [View]

      Actually, if I may, I think BBEdit 8 could use a more intuitive approach to the document drawer. If you have multiple windows open you simply have to hit command + ` to rotate between windows.

      There needs to be a simple command like that to rotate between the documents in the drawer - a rotation that doesn't end, if you will, when the "next" document is the last document, then you need to switch to another keyboard command to go the other way. Not good, IMHO.

      At least (for the money BBE costs), provide a slew of options for managing and switching documents.

      Personally, I'd scrap the pull-down menu next to the right/left arrows to change docs (okay, not scrap, allow it, but allow it to be turned off) and I'd opt for a tabbed interface similar to the tabbing in Camino (or for Windows users, the tabbed interface in EditPlus).

      BBEdit has unnecessarily given us an inordinate amount of keyboad commands and mouse movements to do something that should be much simpler.

      I should be able to see all the doc open (tab them) across the top w/o the drawer open. The active document should be obviously highlighted in aqua. I should then be able to use a command + (some button) to jump between open tabs.

      I use iKey (and AppleScript) to streamline my workflow, and I've had very little success trying to make an AppleScript to jump between open documents in a drawer. I've got a working model but only for two files I use all the time. Other docs I have to manually go to.

      Just my .02.