Friday, May 12, 2006


For users of Final Draft 7, especially anyone on the new Intel Macs, head over to the Final Draft website post haste for the 7.1.2 update. Nothing apparently new feature-wise but the upgrade does now make Final Draft universal. Which means that if you're current on either a PPC or Intel Mac, you'll be running the program at optimal performance. Just using it briefly this morning, I am glad to report that all of the crappy scrolling issues and screen refresh/redraw issues that made 7.1.1 so annoying on a MacBook Pro seem to be long gone. It feels stable, you can use two-fingered scrolling to your heart's content, and text stays where you put it after you put it there. Other than these noticeable differences, Final Draft also claims "many improvements to product stability." And if you for some reason use a Windows Tablet PC to write your screenplays on: "Final Draft Windows® now allows Windows Tablet PCs to set where the scroll bar is positioned (for left or right handed users)." So there's that. Which is nice.

The upgrade is free to registered users of version 7. If you've been holding on to Version 6, the cost of becoming current is now just $59, the advantage presumably being a much more stable program at 7.1.2 now. I love the feel on my MacBook but welcome any input from PPC Mac users that download the update (pro and con).

While waiting for this development, I have also been beta testing the pre-release version of Montage, the new Mac-only screenwriting suite from Mariner Software. Any Mac user who has been less than thrilled with Final Draft should contact them through their website to see if they can take a test drive as well. Although there are still some bugs to be worked out, I like the direction they are taking their program. The addition of dedicated outlining, synopsis, and research functions to the traditional word processing elements is a clear improvement. And the use of "Scenes" to construct a script scene-by-scene, rather than merely inputting text uninterrupted from start to finish, is in practice what the index card features of Final Draft and MMS aspire to be in theory. I'm interested to see how well the release version ultimately stacks up against the big hitters.


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