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OS X - Apps and Games Discussion of applications and games available for Mac OS X.

Mellel


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MJGUK
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Hey all,

After using this program, I feel compelled to tell you all about it.
I'm sure a few of you may already be familiar with this App, but for those of you who are not, I hope this is especially useful!

As a college student I spend a fair amount of my time writing essays, research papers and academic papers in general.
Having switched over to the Mac platform several months back now, I've been steadily trotting along with Microsoft Word.....Up until now....

Whilst Word is a good program and arguably, profoundly sufficient for the majority of people who encounter it, personally I've found it doesn't quite offer what I require.
I've used Word as my WP for years and years now. I've switched around playing with a few others such as Open Office etc too, but essentially Word was always adequate.

Now however, my writing has stepped up a gear and as I step up my efforts in this way, I'm finding thousands of words just 'slipping' on to the page without even noticing and increasingly this has been causing me great problems in arranging and structuring my essays. Word simply cannot offer me a solution to this problem. Furthermore when it comes to things such as End Notes/Foot Notes/Citations and a whole load more....Although Word can fulfill a number of these functions, personally I've found it very basic in these areas.......Ok so Word can't offer me these things.....But....

Mellel however, can!

I'm not joking when I say I spent OVER half a day yesterday scouring all the lists of programs to replace Word and I can 'assure' you, the competition is vast and impressive.

Copywrite, Ulysses, Nisus Writer Express....The list goes on and the reason I do list those specific applications is because they ALL offer a credible alternative and the choice was not easy.

Copywrite and Ulysses offer amazing full-screen modes which are just perfect for seeing your texts 'up close and personal' :p
Nisus comes with all the maturity you'd expect from a long standing and highly successful application and has a plethora of features to offer.

However if what you want is the complete feature list and a practical application for the type of person who is going to use it (an academic/writer), Mellel is what you 'NEED'.

Ok so, the GUI is pretty average...It's certainly not pretty. But minus the full screen (which I'd love as an addition!) it has the most complete feature list. In fact, it has so many features it comes with a 300+ page PDF user guide. This thing surely performs functions that many of us are not even aware of, but in this sense it caters for every eventuality.
  1. Amazing Structuring of your Documents, with numerous levels and sub-levels.
  2. Great formatting features
  3. VERY Stable
  4. Great Support
  5. So many features you'll never find them all, no matter how hard you try!

This may look like a lengthy advert by now......
But in truth, I'm just finding this so useful that I thought I'd share it with all of you, many of which seem to do a lot of writing too!
Because if you are a writer, an author.....basically if you write lengthy text in any way, this program WILL and CAN improve the process, save you time and help you to organise, enhance and arrange your documents in so many ways!

In terms of teaming this App with Word and the extended computing world, this is how I play it:

1) I write notes/concepts/ideas on my project in Word, or frankly....Whichever WP comes first to hand.
2) I start writing my first draft in Mellel and it continues in this App right until....
3) The Essay is completed. At which point I export it into Word (.doc) format and it sits nicely stored and backed up on my data servers.

....All my Mellel files are stored in 'Draft' folders within my main subject/topic folders. It works just great!

Hope this review has been useful!
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zeta101

 
Member Since: May 26, 2005
Location: Walsall, England
Posts: 243
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Looks very nice, reminds me of LaTeX without all the coding! Incidentally, does it have anything like an equation editor, or is this more of a 'book authors' wiord processor than a scientific one?

Can you export to anything else other than .doc, .rtf, .txt? (I'm guessing you can print to PDF just by using the OSX feature?) and how good is the .doc export? do you lose any formatting etc?
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MJGUK
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Not sure about equation editor, but it has full structural support for tables, images, equations etc. It organises them all separately from your text structure etc.

You can export to .txt .rtf and .doc
You can also take full advantage of OS X PDF Support.
The .doc export seems seemless, although I have only used it a few times so far it seems excellent. Although I guess that depends on what fonts, format styles etc you use.
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