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Apr 5, 2013 David Lang

Powerful Preferences: Appearance Settings

This is the third in a series of posts on Accordance preferences. We've already covered the General settings here and here. Today, we'll look at the Appearance settings.

Appearance2

The Appearance preferences present you with a number of broad ways you can change the look of Accordance. While this is not the place to go to change the font used in your various texts and tools (click Text Display or Tool Display for that), Appearance is the place to go when you want to make more fundamental changes, such as the maximum width of a line of text or how quickly to auto-scroll.

The options under Text Appearance let you make some interesting typographic changes. The first of these lets you specify the maximum width of text in a window. For example, if you have a wide screen and a workspace with only one tab, you may end up with a very wide column of text.

Appearance1

Since this can be hard to read, you may want to specify that a column of text can be only six inches wide. To do that check Limit text width and then drag the slider to six inches. When you click OK, even the widest window will show a column of text no wider than six inches. Any additional space will appear as white space to the left and right of the text.

Appearance3

The next text display option is to use ligatures in fonts that support it. Ligatures are combinations of letters that share common elements, such as fl and fi. The following screen shots show the same text with the use ligatures option unchecked and checked:

NoLigature

Without ligatures

Ligature

With ligatures

Remember that ligatures are only supported in certain fonts, so you won't see a difference with older, legacy fonts.

Another text appearance option is to use European verse notation. With this option checked, Accordance will display verse references according to European conventions. It will also interpret verse references in searches accordingly.

European

A similar option is to have Accordance use SBL standard abbreviations for Bible book names. Check this option, and Accordance will display book names using SBL abbreviations.

In addition to the Text Appearance options just mentioned, Accordance offers a few Other appearance options. Here you can set the font size of text in Browser panes such as the Library and the Tool window's Table of Contents. You can also adjust the speed of auto-scrolling, choose to use a white background for pictures instead of the default black, and turn on or off the automatic widening of the Tool window's Table of Contents browser when you mouse over it.


 

Apr 9, 2012 David Lang

Don't Take Drag and Drop for Granted

Accordance offers tremendous advantages over other Bible programs—speed, flexibility, powerful features and valuable resources found nowhere else. Yet sometimes, in focusing on those big advantages, we lose sight of the many smaller advantages we all tend to take for granted. Recently, a reviewer was evaluating Accordance and pointed out an advantage that hadn't really occurred to us: the ability to drag and drop text and images.

As this reviewer was working with Accordance, he arranged his screen so that Accordance was side-by-side with the word processor he uses to compose his sermons. When he wanted to copy text out of Accordance, he simply selected it, then dragged it and dropped it onto his word processor. It's the kind of functionality Mac users don't even think about, so to us it seemed like no big deal. Yet surprisingly, this simple action is simply not possible with some other Mac Bible programs.

Dragging text from Accordance and Dropping it onto a Pages template

This reviewer didn't mention images, but you can also drag image thumbnails from an Accordance tool window to copy the full-size image into another program. For example, if you're putting together a bulletin in Pages or a slide show in Keynote, you can drag the thumbnail from Accordance onto an image placeholder in the other program.

Dragging an image thumbnail from Accordance onto an image placeholder in a Pages template

Doing so will copy the image to that placeholder, keeping any borders or custom formatting which were applied to that placeholder.

Dragged text and image now appear in the Pages template

Again, this simple functionality makes getting images out of Accordance incredibly easy, and apparently, it's not something to be taken for granted!