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  Should we have a manual "preview post" button?

+ 4 like - 0 dislike

While the auto-preview function in SE is annoying when I try to write a very long answer/question, no preview at all isn't convenient either. In fact I would say "no preview" creats a technical barrier to especially new users, for new users(talking from my own experience) would like to test by trial and error and learn how to compose a nice-looking post. For example I was just trying to figure out if double dollars $$ would create a centered math formula, but it seemed to be impossible without actually posting a question.

Could we have a manual "preview post" button? I remember www.physicsforums.com has this function, which helps a lot.

Aside: By the way let me just test double dollar here, and edit away if necessary,


asked Mar 21, 2014 in Feature Request by Jia Yiyang (2,640 points) [ revision history ]
edited Mar 25, 2014 by Jia Yiyang
Most voted comments show all comments

This has been brought up before multiple times, but we already have it. For LaTeX input, you can use double-dollar/single-dollar signs, but you can get a proper WYSIWYG sort of LaTeX through the \(\Sigma\) button in the top row of the editor.  

Ok, thanks, understood and settled. But even just for plain text, it is would be nice to preview it in a larger display space when it gets too long.

@jia there's a maximise icon for the editor, what you type is exactly what you get, and the latex editor is great in that it updates just the equation, rather than the whole post. The fact that it hasn't a preview may seem confusing at first, but makes sense when you see how it functions.

@physicsnewbie Yes, thanks for reminding us about that. Maybe the icon of the expander could be changed to "Preview". 

@physicsnewbie Right, thanks for pointing this out!

Most recent comments show all comments

@JiaYiyang I don't think that is worth the time that Polarkernel will have to spend to implement this. It is WYSIWYG, and the space can be expanded. 

Maybe a full preview can be developped later, during or after the public beta. I admit that such a preview always helps me to debug my posts too, but I think the most important thing is the LaTex preview which we already have.

1 Answer

+ 2 like - 0 dislike

Preview is provided as an editor plugin in the directory qa-plugin/wysiwyg-editor/plugins, all you need to do is install it into the editor. It doesn't require coding on polarkernel's part. I think it should be turned on.

answered Mar 25, 2014 by Ron Maimon (7,720 points) [ no revision ]

I don't understand the need for a preview on a WYSIWYG editor. 

@dimension10, one small use can be e.g. preivew it when my text contains double-dollar-centered equations, I haven't figured out how to preview it in the present settings. I would love to have it, though not at the expense of too much technical trouble.

Ok, I realise that  centred equations are not done by the sigma button. So +1.   

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