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Ward Baxter
Mercenary of Music

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Date Joined Oct 1999
Total Posts : 280
   Posted 8/26/2004 7:02 AM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
I've said before that I think the documentation for FinaleScript is not the greatest, but I don't think I've ever said anything constructive.   Lets face it...the manual for FinaleScript should be layed out like a manual for any other programming language.  In your examples...consistency is a must.  I realize it starts making sense after a while, but why have the manual be more complicated than the product?  So here goes: a few thoughts on how to make the documentation better...a lot of this deals with the "Command Reminder" script, but deals with the PDF as well.
1.) establish the syntax for examples at the beginning of the manual and be consistent. currently, the manual only refers to double quotations. I know its pedantic, but I've been very conused so far.    What does < > mean? what about single quotes? double quotes? dashes? { }? ( )?   ex.:
<ATTRIBUTE> // required attribute value appended to command
{ATTRIBUTE} // optional attribute value appended to command
[OPTION] // indicates an optional value such as "[dont] display in concert pitch"  brackets are not included in command 
[OPTION1/OPTION2] // indicates a choice between two options.  brackets are not included in command 
'VALUE' // string of text.  quotes are only to separate attributes in examples (not included)
"VALUE" // string of text.  quotes must be included in command
2.) can the scripts be visually separated from description?  (via color, font, style, etc)  The difference between the "preformatted" and "serif" font in the manual are not unique enough to make anything really stand out. ex.:
process all open // without it only the current document will be processed
zoom <ATTRIBUTE> // where {ATTRIBUTE} is 50, 75, 100, 200 or 400
3.) mantain consistent document formatting.  A comma means one thing one place, and something else in another.
ex. taken from the help file, these four parentheses mean different things!
new, (n). Creates a new default document   // new or n are the commands
update (word) extensions // part of the actual string to type
(disable) Automatic Music Spacing // optional setting
copy, cp, cpy (MassEdit command) // description
4.) Leave examples for the end of a command or section. As it stands, the examples are right in the middle of the mix. (I can't really get any spacing right here (thus the ---->), but you get the idea)
page format {ATTRIBUTE} // where {ATTRIBUTE} is 'landscape', 'portrait', 'A4', 'Letter', 'A3', '123.45x67.890 [cent/inch]'
print, p  // print the entire document with the current page Setup settings
------> print ? // opens print dialog box
------> print {ATTRIBUTE}  // where {ATTRIBUTE} is '2-up', '4-up', 'even', 'odd', 'page 3 to 18', 'to page 20', etc
-------------------------> // you can also specify a print string, such as '2,4,6-9'
------> print booklet // print 16-page booklets automatically
These are just some opinions that I think would clear things up a bit...take 'em or leave 'em.  I think that FinaleScript is a great thing...I just wish that diving into it didn't seem like learning a new language.  With some better documentation, I don't think I would feel that way.  Thanks for your time!

Ward Baxter
Finale 3.0-F2K2b, F2K3 (in box), F2K4 (next to F2K3)
TGTools, Forza, Patterson...all the goodies!
Win XP Pro

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Allen J. Fisher

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Date Joined May 2004
Total Posts : 653
   Posted 9/17/2004 5:03 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.

Thanks for the feedback. I'm doing what I can to get FS's documentation updated.

Allen J. Fisher
Sr. Quality Assurance Technician
MakeMusic! Inc.

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