The word processor of choice for scholars, writers and long document writing
Mellel 3.5 is Here, with Text Boxes,and a host of other features!
Get on Top of Things: Keep Your Document in Order
Everyone who ever wrote a long document knows this: the longer the document gets, the harder it is to keep in order. The whole thing becomes a huge mess of headings, tables, captions, images, bookmarks, and what not.
In comes Mellel. Mellel's superb Outline tool allows you to keep things in order. It gives you a bird's eye view of your entire document, lists all the tables, images, bookmarks (all together or separately), allowing you to easily locate, jump to, move and change, collapse and expand the view, and so on. The longer your document gets, it's still easy to control it with Mellel.
The way your documents look makes a difference. Mellel offers an unparalleled set of features allowing you to control how your document looks: Page, Section, Paragraph, and Character styles, Auto-titles, Lists, footnotes and endnotes: you can design all of those to the tiniest detail.
Best of all, you get to keep it: Mellel's powerful Style Sets assures that you'll be able to use any set of styles you've created with every document. Design once, use everywhere.
Design (and Re-Design) Your Headings
Ever wanted to design your headings? Well, with Mellel you really should.
Mellel's excellent Auto-title feature allows you to set a heading with multiple parts (numbering, title, numbering, tabs, and so on; apply different character styles to every part, determine how it will look in the Table of Contents, in the Outline, in Cross References, or in a repeating header (mention). And you can do that, and much more, with nine levels of heading and up to 99 caption headings (for images, tables, etc.).
What's it good for? Nothing, really... That is, until you need to get all 241 titles 1 point smaller, your numbering 1 point larger, while inserting a line break after the title. With Mellel, you can do that with a few mouse clicks and in 1 minute.
How Does Mellel Measure up?
We believe in honesty. We also believe it's the best policy - for you, and for us.
Mellel is a writing tool for professionals. As such, giving you a fair assessment of Mellel and what it can do and what it cannot do, will benefit you, judging whether Mellel fits your needs - and will benefit us: Mellel is purchased based on word-of-mouth, and recommendations by your fellow professional writers. If you'll be happy with Mellel, they too will come around.
The following table will try to encompass some features in Mellel, assessing them on Level of completion, from none to best-of-breed, taking special note of features that are unique to Mellel.
None: this feature does not exist in Mellel.
Partial: this feature is partially implemented in Mellel.
Full: this feature is fully implemented in Mellel, and comparable with other advanced writing tools.
Best: this feature is implemented in Mellel better than with any other writing tool.
Unique: no other writing tool have this feature.
But you must explain this...
Mellel's unique Auto-titles allow you to create multi-part headings (e.g., with a title, numbering, free text, line breaks, etc.) and utilise those headings in the Outline, the ToC, running-headers, cross references, and more.
Mellel's Table feature is acceptable, but sub-par compared with other features. All the bread-and-butter options are there, but Mellel lacks table styles, repeating headers and more flexibility that is expected with an advanced word-processor.
This one really has it all : referencing headings, images, tables, captions, and bookmarks; an editor enabling you to to create multi-part references with maximum flexibility (e.g., referencing "see note X on page y, under chapter x").
Nobody does this better: You can sort alphabetically or numerically paragraphs or text with any delimiter, and also allows for secondary sort, ignore words or enclosed text. This is really, sort of (ha ha), the standard here.
Mellel's track changes feature supports all the features you'd expect to find with track changes: display modes (original, show changes, final, and final with changes), multiple authors, pause and moving between changes, a changes pane, and more.
All the expected options are here: comments, styling of comments, details about a comment, a comments pane and the ability to export and print comments. No special or unique option - just all the options.
Markers are markers: This feature in Mellel allows you to mark text with different colours, search marked text, apply styling based on marking, set the marker names, and more. It gets the job done - nothing more, and nothing less.
Statistics: word count and more
Supports word, line, paragraph, notes, tables, images, citations, hyperlinks and auto-title count - total and in a selection. Mellel also allows filtering of blank characters, breaks and punctuation marks (useful if you need to have a 'clean' word count).
Bibliography and Citations
Mellel offers superb support for citations and bibliography, especially when working with Bookends and Sente, including live bibliography, styling of citations and bibliography, citations' list, synchronising databases, turning text into citations, and more.
Mellel's supports all the standard paragraph options, and offers advanced layout options such as high-end hyphenation, keep with and keep wish next options. It's still missing some features (e.g., paragraph over-bar).
Mellel's character style support includes all the features you'd expect to find in an advanced word processor, and ads the very useful variations support within a style. It does not support marching-ants around text, though.
Mellel's right-to-left language support is second to none, including support for all OpenType features related to right-to-left languages, bi-lingual support within styles (secondary font) that works as it is supposed to work.
CJK and Devanagari Languages
Mellel's support for CJK languages is adequate, though lacking some high end features and vertical text. It's Devanagari languages support is, well, non-existent and a huge missing part in Mellel's armour of features.
Mellel offers powerful page style, and a good management option set to allow you to design how your document will look and maintain consistency. It loses some points, though, because the style design system is not easy to learn and use.
Mellel offers superb support for section styles, including sophisticated separator, space above and below, and gutter options. It lacks, however, support for different width columns, with drops its support here a peg or two.
Mellel offers excellent support for lists and list styles, including minute control over positioning of symbols, text and their format. It lacks support for legal lists (1.1., 1.2., etc.) and does not offer auto-sizing of indention.
Mellel offers some superb spelling and language matching options. It still lacks some automation options expected with a work-horse of its level, and suffers from a somewhat dodgy interface. It's good, but not that good.
If Line numbering is your thing, Mellel is your tool . You'll find just about everything you've dreamed about, and then some. It even has an option to use channels, if you need to 'interlace' numbering and number certain types of text sections differently.
Find and Replace
Mellel offers superb find and replace, including a RegEx-like lingo, creating and saving find scripts, find Actions, find and replace by style, and more. It's robust, efficient, but less suitable for simple quick-and-dirty lookups.
Mellel offers full screen support, where you can choose how you wish to work: without any distractions, with the Outline open, or with the palettes visible - all without giving up on the comfort of a WYSIWYG layout.
Mellel's unique Find-Sets allow you to create, edit, and run multiple Find Actions at once, to easily perform text-standardisation tasks, text clean-up, style-guide compliance, and so on. You can also easily export and move Find-sets.
Mellel's outline is based on auto-titles in the text and offers unparalleled power and efficiency, allowing users to unified or separate display of tables, images and chart captions, and using a separate format with the outline (e.g., without numbering).
Table of Contents
Mellel's Table of Content is a mixed bag: on the one hand, it is powerful, flexible and always up-do-date. On the other hand, it's fairly cumbersome and far from being easy to use. It's far from what it can be.
Notes (footnote, endnotes)
Of all writing tools, Mellel offers the best footnote and endnote support - and by some margin, offering unique options such as styles, multiple streams of notes, control over note breaking and superb real-time layout of text and notes.
Mellel offers superb support for hyphenation, including a special application to create and edit hyphenation dictionaries, word length, hyphenation limit and zone, and before/after hyphen control. In terms of capabilities, it's probably the best there is.
Export and Import
Mellel offers export to RTF, Doc, PDF, Plain text and OPML; It supports import from RTF (fully), doc and docx (more rudimentary), OPML and plain text. RTF export and import is good — but Mellel is weak on most of the other fronts.
Mellel supports images of all types, placing them inline or floating, and offering control over floating text around images, and auto-adjustment of line heights, so to maintain the text layout as it should be.
Mellel supports Text boxes, allowing you to place them as inline or floating boxes, style the text in the box, flow text around boxes, control fill, frame, and last (but not least) snap align text boxes with the page or other elements in it.
Mellel supports an easy way to toggle the display of hidden characters in the text, such as Return, space, page margins, and so on. Mellel does not use hidden markings in the text, so hidden characters does not distort the text layout.
This is a by-the-book feature: Mellel supports everything supported by any other application regarding hyperlinks, with the (small) addition of linking to a file on your disk. No flair, no innovation. Just a feature well done.