After another “learning session” with Dorico (a bit frustrating, but making progress), it occurs to me that this idea might be helpful. I was trying to change the default size of rehearsal marks–a seemingly simple task. But it took awhile to locate the exact menu to accomplish this…
I realize that Sibelius has the same quirks: some characteristics of rehearsal marks are changed in the TEXT menu; others (like positioning) are changed in the APPEARANCE menu. Page Numbers [in Sibelius] are in a similar circumstance.
You have to go to multiple locations to make changes to the look and positioning… but it’s not immediately apparent where else you need to look. Or IF you need to look elsewhere. And in the APPEARANCE menu some things are considered “Objects” while other seemingly identical things are “Text”. Quite frustrating, but after years of using it, you learn where to look.
What if in the Engraving Options at the end of the Rehearsal Marks menu there were hyperlinks to all other options for Rehearsal Marks? “If you want to change the font size and style, click HERE.” Page Numbers: “If you want to adjust the default position of Page Marks, click HERE.” All of those options which are not accessible from the current menu, but ARE accessible from other menus could be included [in all related menus]. I realize that’s a pretty tall order for programming, but think of the ease for the learning curve for newbies…
If not direct access to other menus, maybe a link to the Help file which could steer someone to look in the right direction?
When I think of all the time I’ve wasted with MS WORD trying to find how to do some simple operation [which changed in later versions], like showing/hiding page numbers, or changing their style/size/font… a hyperlink to the appropriate menu would solve that easily.
I think, it could clutter the menus quite a bit - and probably be a significant job to get every intertwined function and property fully listed everywhere.
However, I agree that it can be very annoying to spend your time searching for where to do what (in Dorico as well as in every other application with high complexity). Maybe a system-wide search function could be realistic? So that you search for Rehearsal Mark and get a list of all places, it is mentioned - the right panel, Engraving Options, Font Styles, whatever. Not necessarily more, since you would in most cases know immediately where to go next. This could be timesaving for the user, and (I suppose) not so hard to program, since the function should only recognise words and wouldn’t need much semantic understanding. And the information would be hidden and thus not in your way until you need it - but still easy to find!
It would certainly be an tall order while the program and documentation are still being developed and extended, because all the links would need to be reviewed and updated for every change to the user interface and/or the user manual.
A set of links that “looks like” it is complete, but actually isn’t (or some of the links don’t work) might be even more frustrating than no links at all.
We have certainly discussed the idea of a kind of Spotlight-like universal search tool within Dorico that could find options in dialogs, Properties, menu items, and so on. I’m afraid it’s unlikely to be something that we will get to in the near future as we are devoted to adding core features as quickly as possible, but in the future, I would certainly not rule it out (or indeed linking various dialogs together in some way, where it makes sense).