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Scalar 1 User’s Guide

Editing Pages, page 1 of 5
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Adding Text

This section describes functionality in Scalar's page editor, which is accessed by clicking the "New" button (if creating new content) or the "Edit" button (if editing existing content) at the bottom of the page.

Title and Description

Every page in Scalar must have a title, and while it isn't required, it is highly recommended that every title in your book be unique. For example, a page with commentary about a video called "Cloudy Day" should probably not also be called "Cloudy Day"--otherwise readers searching in your book could get confused. Better to leave the video title as is and call the page "Cloudy Day Commentary". It's also useful to make your titles as self-contained and descriptive as possible, since you can never be sure how users will arrive at a given location. A page titled "Questions About Cloudy Day" immediately lets the reader know what it's about; a page just titled "Questions," much less so.

Page descriptions are optional, but recommended, as they appear in various places in Scalar (with more likely coming in the future) as a way to quickly let the reader know what a particular page is about. One sentence or so is usually a good length.

Body Content

Below the title and description is a text editor, similar to what you might find in blogging software. This is where you enter the main content of the page. The text editor has two modes, identified by the two tabs at its top: Visual and HTML. The Visual mode functions much like a typical word processor: text is displayed with styling and formatting, much as it will appear in the final page. A row of icons at the top of the Visual mode editor allows you to change the style and alignment of the text, to indent or outdent, add subscripts or superscripts, assign headings, create numbers and bulleted lists, and insert horizontal rules. The HTML mode of the editor displays the raw code that will be saved with the page, and can be used when precision in formatting is essential.

Pasting Text into Scalar

Pasting styled text from a word processing program into Scalar (or any blogging software) can have unpredictable results. As the text editor tries to interpret and preserve the pre-existing styles, it's easy to end up with large quantities of redundant style code that can slow your book down, add unwanted fonts, and make editing more difficult later on. The easiest way around this is to switch to the editor's HTML mode first before pasting; this will cause any formatting to be automatically removed. The downside of this approach is that it will also remove any formatting you might have intended to keep, like italic or bold text, but as with blogging software, it's usually better to add that kind of styling to text that's already been entered into the system, rather than trying to copy and paste it from another program.

If you do somehow end up with text in your book that has unwanted styling, you can easily remove it by switching the editor to Visual mode, selecting the text, and clicking the red X icon--this will delete any links and formatting from the selected text.

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