Ulysses and Daedalus Touch: Caveat Emptor

I was hoping that it would be easy to work on a document in Ulysses and Daedalus (when away from home), but I’ve found that it isn’t unless I like to work only with plain text documents, and not even Markdown.

To help understand what I mean, let me explain what I’ve been up to this morning.

I created a simple two document project with some semantic mark up in Ulysses, then I saved it to my Dropbox.

I opened up Daedalus and tried to open the document, then found that Daedalus will only import plain text files from a folder, and only one folder deep.

Since that didn’t work I then exported from Ulysses (Web Export, Markdown) – keeping in mind I had used the default Ulysses semantic markup of // and ++.

When I opened the text file I found that the Ulysses markup had been transformed to Markdown. All well and good, and so I imported into Daedalus.

I did some minor editing on the project in Daedalus, then exported the whole stack back out as ePub, PDF, plain text, and RTF (using the All-In-One option) to see what the output looked like.

ePub exported as the whole stack in one epub “page”, which I didn’t expect, whereas PDF exported as I kind of expected, with separate sheets of paper starting new pages. I had expected the ePub export to be one ePub file with multiple chapters, but a view at the code in Sigil shows that both documents were simply stuck together in the one chapter – there was a TOC which linked to both though.

Plain text was plain text, but when I imported the documents into Ulysses it ignores the Markdown syntax. It doesn’t even give me an option to specify that the file is in Markdown, and won’t open files with a .md extension (after manually changing it in Finder).

Importing the RTF file lost the Markdown formatting completely. I can deal with the one piece of paper as a file, but the loss of formatting is just silly when the RTF file has formatting.

As might be apparent from this post, I’m a bit disappointed. I hate to just whinge but I spent quite some time yesterday getting the impression from the Soulmen’s site and reviews on Google that I could edit a file saved in my Dropbox in either Ulysses or Daedalus and easily switch to the other, using Markdown as the bare minimum formatting option, and then export from either program to a nice clean (albeit minimal) ePub file – replacing the CSS later if need be.

It seems that either program will basically do what I expect it to on its own (aside from Daedalus’s whole stack in one ePub chapter flaw) but there’s no realistic way to work between the two.

About Ben

Once a professional IT geek and then Assistant Tradesman, I'm now trying my hand at being an Author.
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