In FM 2017, the Global Update Function in the Paragraph Designer doesn't work as expected

Contributor ,
Oct 28, 2017

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My issue: Updating selected paragraphs globally in the paragraph designer doesn't work correctly.

  1. Create a blank document with two paragraphs: 1st paragraph format: 'Body', 2nd paragraph format: i.e. 'Heading1'.
  2. Open the Paragraph Designer.
  3. Choose the Font sheet.
  4. Commands > Set Window to As Is
  5. Select the 1st paragraph.
  6. Font sheet > Change the Family, i.e. 'Times New Roman' to 'Arial'.
  7. Commands > Global Update Options > Use Properties in the Paragraph Designer: 'Default Font Properties Only' and Update Paragraph Formats: 'All Matching Tags in Selection'

The font family in the selected 1st paragraph is correctly updated to 'Arial' (no format overrides).

And the font family in the 1st paragraph's tag ('Body') is correctly updated to 'Arial', too.

That's what I expected.

The font family in the not selected 2nd paragraph is still 'Times New Roman' (but with a format override!).

And the font family in the 2nd paragraph's tag ('Heading1') is updated to 'Arial', too!

That's not what I expected.

Where did i go wrong? Or is FM buggy?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 28, 2017

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I keystroked this workflow, but did not get the same results. Instead, the selected Body paragraph changed to Arial with an override, Heading1 was unchanged.

My question though is why are you choosing this workflow? I normally use Global updates to make changes to multiple consecutive paragraphs at one time that have different tag names. For example, in an index I might select IXLevel1, IXLevel2 and IXLevel3 and I'll change the typeface, size, alignment and hyphenation of all three tags with one sweep. In that scenario, the window is set to As Is automatically and the Global Update dialog box opens automatically when I choose Update Style.

If you aren't working with multiple paragraphs, why go through the extra steps of setting window to as is and then choose global updates? If you want to change Body to Arial, why not just click in a the Body paragraph, then choose Paragraph Designer > Font > Arial and Update Style. That will update all Body paragraphs in the document to Arial. What am I missing, Lothar?


~Barb

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Contributor ,
Oct 29, 2017

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Running on my machine: FM 2017 Update 2 (Version: 14.0.2.425)

Many thanks for your assistance, Barb.

I just started to read Matt Sullivan's 'Working with Content', because I'd like to learn more about all the rare or even never used FM functions. Perhaps there are some hidden secrets, easing my FM work in the future.

In my previous FM life as a technical writer, I've never used the Global Update Function. It's a very hard to understand function - even without annoying bugs; or confusing FM terms ('paragraph tag' = 'paragraph format' = 'style' = 'type' ?). Or as Matt wrote: '[Global Update] is not for the faint of heart.'.

I don't prefer one workflow or another. But before choosing a specific workflow, I'd like to understand all the existing FM workflows.

----------

The Global Update Function is becoming more and more mysterious to me. Did some more testing:

Test 2:

  • Create a blank document with three paragraphs:
    • 1st paragraph format: 'Heading1'
    • 2nd paragraph format: 'Heading2'
    • 3rd paragraph format: 'Body'
  • Open the Paragraph Designer.
  • Choose the Font sheet.
  • Commands > Set Window to As Is (omitted this time)
  • Select the 1st and the 2nd paragraph. (Select the entire content, including the 2 paragraph signs)
  • Font sheet > Change the Family to 'Arial'.
  • Click 'Update Style'. -> Global Update dialog box opens automatically:
    • Use Properties in the Paragraph Designer: 'Default Font Properties Only'
    • Update Paragraph Formats: 'All Matching Tags in Selection'

Result:

  • 1st paragraph ('Heading1'): Paragraph updated to 'Arial'. No overrides. Nice.
  • 2nd paragraph ('Heading2'): Paragraph updated to 'Arial'. No overrides. Nice.
  • 3rd paragraph ('Body'): Paragraph not updated to 'Arial'. Nice. But overrides! Not nice. The 'Body' format is updated to 'Arial', too! And furthermore, the weight in the 'Body' format is bold! Really not nice.

Test 3:

Same conditions as in Test 2, but now I did select the entire content of both paragraphs, including only the 1st paragraph sign and omitting the paragraph sign of the 2nd paragraph.

Result:

  • 1st paragraph ('Heading1'): Paragraph updated to 'Arial'. No overrides. Nice.
  • 2nd paragraph ('Heading2'): Paragraph updated to 'Arial'. No overrides. Nice.
  • 3rd paragraph ('Body'): Paragraph not updated to 'Arial'. No overrides. The 'Body' format is not updated to 'Arial', too. Nice.

It seems to me, there is a hidden faulty connection between the paragraph sign of a previous paragraph and the paragraph format of the following paragraph.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 29, 2017

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Interesting discoveries here. When I use global update—which I love because it's so efficient—I normally select the paragraphs in their entirety, and when I update a single paragraph, I tend to click and not bother to select anything. The click is because I'm lazy/efficient (you don't need to select a paragraph for paragraph-level formatting) but I'm not really sure why I select entire paragraph on global updates. But perhaps that's why I haven't experienced the weird override issue that you described. I can tell you that how paragraph styles update was changed in 2017, and the first release had issues that were addressed in the patches that you have installed—maybe that's also playing into it. But that's just a guess. I've taught global updates for years, and haven't seen the behavior you described with any of my students, either. (But again, I probably say "select xxx paragraphs in their entirety".)

And I'm with you on the confusing terminology. Here's my take: in the early years, FrameMaker called them "Formats", Ventura called them "Tags" and PageMaker, Word (and now InDesign, Photoshop and Illustrator) called them "Styles". These days the three terms are used interchangeably. It's one of those things I need to explain to my intro students—because I'm guilty of doing it too.

~Barb

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 30, 2017

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"Or as Matt wrote: '[Global Update] is not for the faint of heart.'."

Hah, I'd forgotten that I wrote that! Like Barb, I rely upon Global update quite a bit when updating FrameMaker templates.

If your Body tag/style/format was affected, and you were using All Matching Tags in Selection, then there was a visible or invisible character selected within a Body paragraph tag.

Using your example, I would encourage students to select from the “middle" of the Heading1 para to the “middle” of the Heading2 para. That way there are no paragraph marks (pilcrows) selected for the Body paragraph.

Seeing a recording of your actions would make it easier to dissect, if you have a screen recording tool handy.

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Contributor ,
Oct 31, 2017

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there was a visible or invisible character selected within a Body paragraph tag.

No invisible character. Just a blank document filled with some 'normal' text.

I would encourage students to select from the “middle" of the Heading1 para to the “middle” of the Heading2 para

I'm sorry to say, but that doesn't work either:

before.jpg

(Don't worry about the German language.)

Typing in the font family 'Arial' (+ pressing 'Return') switches the font weight to 'Regular'. Therefore, the global update function unintendedly updates the weight of 'Heading1':

after.jpg

But typing in the font family 'Arial' (+ without pressing the 'Return' key): The global update function doesn't work at all!

I'm very confused. This is definitely not for the faint of heart. 😉

Someone else with the same experiences?

Either way - a big rework by Adobe is needed, or this function will be useless for me.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 31, 2017

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Either way - a big rework by Adobe is needed, or this function will be useless for me.

You can report this to Adobe here:

Tracker

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 31, 2017

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For your first issue, the only time you should see that behavior is if the Body paragraph tag has the Family set to As Is, which is not something I've ever recommended.

I assume this isn't the case...If not, then you've found either a problem with the German version of FrameMaker, or you have something else on your machine interfering with the function.

For your second issue, when you are using type-ahead, you are only identifying the font unless you click to select the name, or press Tab or Enter to select it. While you (and I) may want to see different behavior, there is a case to be made for its current functionality, and the engineers would likely tell you it works "as designed"

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Lothar_Voigt AUTHOR LATEST
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Nov 12, 2017

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Many thanks for your explanations.

I'll have to rethink the Global Update Function - more than once.

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