Annotation bug? DT3.3

I don’t use annotations as such so as an experiment, I followed the advice in the thread: Annotation how to create DT3. And might have found a bug?

Using a pdf, ocr, I highlighted some text and sure enough it appears in Document Inspector Annotations. To highlight the text, the mouse cursor is shaped like (how can I describe it) a vertical line with convex base and concave top.

On the Annotation in Inspector, the cursor changes to an arrow. Clicking on the Annotation in Inspector takes the cursor to the content in the pdf. Once off the Annotation in Inspector, as the mouse travels over the pdf to the highlighted content the cursor changes to a cross. Then, when I hold the cursor over the highlighted content, the cursor changes to a thumb as expected.

However, when I move the cursor off the highlightd text, it becomes a cross, not a vertical line with convex/concave (as I described above). Which means I am unable to highlight any new content in the pdf.

The only way I’ve found for making the cursor a vertical line again is to quit the pdf then click a different pdf (or item) then click on the first pdf, whereupon the default cursor is the line again.

When on the pdf the cursor starts off as a vertical line, holding the cursor over any unhighlighted content on the pdf the cursor is the vertical line, as expected. Moving the cursor and holding over (not clicking) the Annotation in Inspector the cursor changes to the arrow, as expected. Then returning to the pdf and doing the same over the highlighted content on the pdf the cursor changes to the thumb then holding and clicking the cursor on the unhighlighted text on the pdf the cursor changes to the vertical line, all as expected.

I have found too that when I create a highlight on the pdf and then hold the cursor over the highlight the cursor changes to the thumb (as expected) but - provided I do not then click it in Annotations in Inspector - the cursor changes to the vertical line when I hold the cursor over any unlighted area of the pdf.

In short, it is after clicking on the Annotation in Inspector and being taken to the pdf that the cursor when held over the unhighlighted area of the pdf does not behave as expected and end up as a vertical line.

After selecting a PDF annotation in the Documents > Annotations inspector, the mode (see Tools menu) is set to annotation selection and the annotation is selected (and can be e.g. deleted, moved or edited) in the PDF view. Therefore switch to text selection to highlight more content.

Noted, thank you. I have now changed Mode to text section but it doesn’t make any difference, So I quit DT3 and reopened, still doesn’t make any difference. Cursor goes to cross. Looking at Mode again, it has reverted of its own accord to Annotation Selection. But Annotation Selection doesn’t annotate for a new highlight, to do that requires Text Selection.

I have deleted all annotations and started from scratch. Same issue. So, unless it is a bug, from what you say it will be necessary after each highlight to switch the Mode to Text Selection before continuing to annotate. Really?

This shouldn’t be necessary as long as you don’t switch the modes on your own or select an item in the Document > Annotations inspector.

So basically Annotation is either or but not both, because if I select an item in the Document > Annotations inspector the Mode setting is automatically changed regardless.

If as you indicate it’s not a bug then I think it’s a design fault. Surely the whole point is to be able to create as many annotations as one likes and then check in the Inspector without having to change the Tool selection Mode to Text Selection for each new annotation. Or select in the Inspector only to find that on returning to the pdf one must also change the Mode before creating a new annotation.

I foresee having to create a lot of keyboard shortcuts to accelerate the process!

then check in the Inspector

What are you checking in the Inspector and how often would you be checking it? In the course of highlighting, you can just highlight and continue the process without the Text tool being deselected.

I don’t usually give reasons for my decisions but an exception in this case. In the course of highlighting I would highlight anything that I might find useful only to realise as I read more of the content that a previous highlight was pointless. Whenever I write - I probably churn out at least 100,000 words a week - I prefer to edit as I go, rather than go back over what I’ve written after finishing. By going straight to final version avoids wasting time on compiling drafts. Using DT3 highlighting process, I’d have to adjust the Mode to Text Selection so as to continue highlighting after deleting unwanted highlight(s). .

It seems to me that DT’s highlighting process is designed as a self-contained workflow, without regard for how users, such as myself, might actually use highlighting.

I agree: neither Preview nor PDF Expert limit you this way, and they’re easier to use as a result.

In general I really do appreciate the effort that has gone into trying to improve the annotation functions, but I have to say at the moment, they’re still not smooth enough to use instead of say PDF Expert. Part of the problem is, I think, that the annotation tools aren’t documented in any detail, so I’m never sure whether I’m just using them wrong (they’re not very intuitive in themselves) or whether there’s a bug in them.

For example: the manual mentions the Note annotation tool, but it doesn’t explain how to use the popup. or what the various options mean. As far as I can see, the popup itself isn’t mentioned in the manual at all, yet it’s not immediately clear how it works.

  • the Colour and Fill Colour swatches apply to different types of annotation (the first for Notes, the second for highlights/text annotations etc.) I worked that out by trial and error.
  • there’s a drop down for Icon, which appears as though it should change the post-it note shape to Key / Comment etc. It doesn’t – is that a bug, or am I doing something wrong?
  • What does the Set button do? You’d assume that it would be used to make the current selected options apply to all future annotations of that type — but that happens even if you don’t press the Set button (ie change the current note to green and all subsequent notes will be green. So, is it redundant, or is it doing something I’m missing?

These aren’t major issues in themselves (and would be mitigated if the manual explained what was going on) but added to the problems with desktop annotations in relation to DTTG and vice versa, then it’s just easier for me to use PDF Expert at the moment, which is a shame.

Thanks for listening…

You don’t have to use the inspector to remove highlights, e.g. Format > Highlight and its shortcut toggle actually the highlighting. If the selected text is already highlighted, using the command a second time removes the highlighting.

Noted, thank you.