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Re: Notation Reference 1.8 "Text" : ready for review

From: Graham Percival
Subject: Re: Notation Reference 1.8 "Text" : ready for review
Date: Fri, 3 Oct 2008 08:32:49 -0700

On Thu, 2 Oct 2008 18:51:36 +0200
"Valentin Villenave" <address@hidden> wrote:

> I'd like to declare that I officially don't feel competetent enough to
> find anything more on my own to improve the 1.8 section of the
> Notation Reference, aka "Text".

Be afraid.  Be very afraid.  :)

> So, I definitely need your help guys! Please have a look, and feel
> free to comment and criticize whatever comes to your mind.

No mercy, then.

- inspirational headword only uses \italics.  Boring.  (yeah, I
  know it fits the theme of Beethoven stuff, but since NR 2
doesn't always follow it, we might want a sexier headword for Text)

- the syntax for text spanners is a maoing disaster.
  #'bound-details #'left #'text?!  You've got to be kidding me.
It would be totally awesome if
  \startTextSpan #"foo"
set up the \override.
(ok, that's not a doc comment, but you said "critize whatever
comes to your mind, so this is your fault)

- final sentence of main text in Text marks:
When specified at the beginning of a score or at a line break,
marks will be printed at the beginning of the line (the next line,
in case of a line break).
  change to:
When specified at the a line break, the mark will be printed at
the beginning of the next line.
  we already know what happens at the beginning of a score, and
that sentence is too complicated.  As a general rule, be
suspicious if you use both parentheses and commas (in a single
  [sic], of course.  :)

Also consider whether you should use "system" instead of "line".
Actually, I'd make this a general note for policy.txt: use
"system" instead of "line".  The term "line" could refer to a
musical voice, a system, or a literal line.  I'd therefore avoid
it unless I was talking about an actual line -- say, "a text
spanner creates a dotted line".

- Separate text: kill the "word processor" thing.  At most, you
  could say that you were using LilyPond as a text typesetter.
Also, what do you mean by "using a specific syntax"? (same

What does \markuplines do?  If it's not obvious (ie not \slurUp),
we need an example in the main text.

- 1.8.2 Formatting Text - text markup introduction:
This syntax even allows to print double quotation marks, by
preceding them with backslashes.
  change to
Double quotation marks may be printed by preceding them with

Are there any other characters that need to be escaped?  What
about {} ?  IIRC there used to be a list of such symbols... but
maybe that was somewhere in Vocal music.  Anyway, if {} need
escaping, that should be mentioned in this paragraph.

I'm still not wild about the
  d_\markup \italic "... prints \"italic\" letters!"
without {} following the \markup.  I think it's a good habit to
get into, and the manual should reinforce good habits.  The first
example on this page already shows that it's possible to omit the
{}, with the \markp intenso.

I don't understand the point of two \center-column examples.  Why
is the first one in there?  mentioning Text alignment here isn't
worth it; people will get to that material on their own.  Kill it;
the three \center-column example shows the point of quotes and
That said, the second example needs one more line:
c1^\markup { \center-column { a "bbb c" } }

Why the IR to TextScript?  AFAIK, there's nothing particular to
TextScript here; either add TextSpanner and RehearsalMark, or
remove the TextScript link.

- Selecting font size: why the mao aren't these examples in
  \relative c' ?!  Ugly, ugly!
(if you want to change them to top-level markup, that's also fine)

. the font size can be defined to an absolute value,
. predefined commands allow to easily select standard sizes,
. the font size can be set to standard sizes,
. the font size can be set to an absolute value,

Change the order of the example as well -- \large is easier to
understand than \fontsize #5, so do it first.  Also, add two more
examples for the \fontsize stuff, and make the indentation match
the other two \markup{ ... } commands.

"alternate font families", second sentence: change the colon to a
period to split it into two sentences.

_New dynamic marks_ and _Manual repeat marks_.: no punctuation
after the first @ref{}.  Remember that we can't do that.

@predef: missing \smaller and \larger.

That's as far as I got before I got bored.

- Graham

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