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I feel what I want to say here could go in many different fora on this site, but OO is where it started, so ...
While contributing to a discussion on a Scrivener forum about the dreaded question of panes vs drawers, in which someone brought up the impression that under the influence of Focus, OO4 may well shift to using panes, I was struck by a couple of things.
Firstly, and most importantly, I am a dedicated user of styles and style sheets, but there is one app in which I don't use the named styles possibilities at all ... OOPro. In all the apps I use, bar OOPro to the best of my knowledge! all drawers which contain tools such as style selection are on the right of the main window; in OO(Pro) it is on the left. So it struck me that that was probably the explanation ... if I could have the drawer on the right, I might make better use of the named styles possibility. Would it not be possible to have a preference la OmniWeb as to which side the drawer is? (In OmniGraffle too?)
Secondly, while thinking about panes, I came to the conclusion that in reality I have no strong objections to panes and they lead to a clean look. However, in all the apps I use which have panes, Yojimbo, GyazMail ..., the main pane is to the right with the listing pane to the left. Now were OO4 to go panes, and were it also to offer the possibility of right vs left for the pane with the style selector, I would end up with the main pane on the left and the 'listing' pane on the right, and I have the feeling that that would be aesthetically uncomfortable.
Why should a drawer on the right feel more natural than a 'listing' pane on the right. The only conclusion I could come to was that it is precisely because a drawer is less closely integrated with the main window, whereas a pane is part of the main window.
Scrivener is not a problem in that it has 'listing' panes to right and left the 'binder' pane and the 'synopsis/labelling/notes' pane with the main pane in the centre ... balanced.
Thoughts anyone?
I've made my views on panes versus drawers clear elsewhere (e.g. OmniWeb thread and one here in the OmniOutliner forum not long after it started). To keep it brief, even if they are more aesthetically pleasing (debatable) they are simply less useful in practical terms.

OmniOutliner drawer issue - press option as you click the Utilities drawer icon in the toolbar and it will open on the opposite side to the current view. I haven't tested to see if this is preserved between sessions, but if it isn't it might be saved as part of the template?

Edit: just tested it and the location isn't preserved between sessions if you have just toggled it back and forth, but it is stored in the template information so if you want the right hand side by default save your template with it there.

Last edited by JKT; 2007-05-15 at 04:43 PM..
Originally Posted by JKT
Edit: just tested it and the location isn't preserved between sessions if you have just toggled it back and forth, but it is stored in the template information so if you want the right hand side by default save your template with it there.
Hmmm... it looks like switching the drawer from popping out one side vs. the other doesn't set the "you have unsaved changes" bit for your document. We're treating it as an editor state change. If you explicitly save the document like this, we'll preserve the change, but we aren't currently regarding it as something that should bring up the save document sheet all by its lonesome.

I'll write this up as a feature request...

Last edited by Brian; 2007-05-17 at 02:15 PM..
Thanks JKT and Brian for your responses.
Actually, in the past I have always been with you Jonathan, preferring drawers, but I do realise that as I always have them open, many of my objections to panes have not actually impinged on me in my normal use patterns. But I really do think I won't like secondary panes on the right. Obviously I will have to live with whatever Omni or any other software author comes up with, but I would never want the contents of the Nisus Writer Express/Pro to be on the left of the main window, whether it was a drawer or a pane.
As for having drawer side setting being saved, that would be great ... I'm sure I'm not the only one who might benefit.

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