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BandHelper => Announcements => Topic started by: arlo on March 31, 2020, 05:27:12 PM

Title: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: arlo on March 31, 2020, 05:27:12 PM
If you use document formats other than PDF

Apple has announced that it is dropping support for its original document viewing framework in December 2020, leaving a newer framework that only displays PDFs. If you are using Word, RTF, Pages, Keynote or PowerPoint files in BandHelper, you should start thinking about converting those files to PDFs. Here's a step-by-step:


Alternatively, you can copy and paste the contents of those files directly into the Lyrics field of your songs. Pros and cons of this approach are listed here:

http://www.bandhelper.com/tutorials/compare_lyrics_documents.html

If you want to try the new document viewer

While implementing the new document framework, I also implemented new frameworks for displaying photos and videos. After some initial hiccups, these new frameworks are working well, and you can switch to them for testing or regular use by turning off Help > Utilities > Use Old Document Viewer. The new viewer offers these advantages:

- Faster document display on iOS 11+
- More accurate paging through multi-page documents on iOS 11+
- Ability to save a zoom level for photos
- More reliable video display and control
- Ability to play a video on the main screen and an external screen simultaneously with the document-only external setting

Differences and disadvantages are:

- Pagination in a 2-column display moves two pages at a time (e.g., instead of changing from pages 1-2 to 2-3, it changes from pages 1-2 to 3-4)
- Saving a zoom position with the 2-column display is not supported, because it zooms both columns together
- Documents will have a gray border on iOS 10 and earlier

You can ask general questions here, but if you see any problems using the new viewer, please submit a help ticket.

Update Sept. 20, 2020: The app versions released today turn on the new document viewer for everyone by default. If you still need to use the old viewer because you have not converted to PDFs or because you are seeing a problem with the new viewer, you may switch back by turning on Help > Utilities > Use Old Document Viewer. However, if you are still using old file formats, remember to update your files by December; and if you are experiencing a problem, please contact us so we can address it.
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: Geoff on May 04, 2020, 07:29:04 AM
If you use document formats other than PDF

Apple has announced that it is dropping support for its original document viewing framework in December 2020, leaving a newer framework that only displays PDFs. If you are using Word, RTF, Pages, Keynote or PowerPoint files in BandHelper, you should start thinking about converting those files to PDFs.

Updating your account will be easy if you make sure to use the same filenames for your PDF files (except for the file extensions). Just zip your new PDFs and upload the zip file on the Repertoire > Documents page of the BandHelper website. Then the PDFs will replace the old files with the same name and will sync to all your devices automatically.

Alternatively, you can copy and paste the contents of those files directly into the Lyrics field of your songs. Pros and cons of this approach are listed here:

http://www.bandhelper.com/tutorials/compare_lyrics_documents.html


Hi Arlo,

I was a dismayed to see that support for Word docs is going away. I have hundreds of Word docs attached to my Bandhelper account, and it would be unthinkably depressing to have to convert them all manually to Bandhelper's native format.

I'm forced then, I guess, to convert all my Word files to pdfs. And that is still *very* depressing.

I would take it as a great kindness to those of your users in my situation (I'd guess there are lots), if you could recommend a clear, simple and non-techy way to batch-convert a large number of .doc and .docx files to pdf files so that moving to the new viewer could be as pain-free as possible. I've already googled this, and have seen several suggested approaches, but I wouldn't know which was best and safest. Would be really grateful if you could provide a reliable tool - or at least give us a concrete recipe.

I'm running on a Mac with MS word if that helps.

Thanks,

Geoff
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: arlo on May 04, 2020, 08:01:09 AM
PDFs display more accurately than Word files, display on all the BandHelper platforms and you can save their zoom positions, so maybe that will assuage your depression.

As you noted, there are several batch-conversion tools available, but I haven't used any myself. I could give some a try if nobody else chimes in on this. I assume the most reliable approach is to open the document in Word (or whatever application created the document), do the Print command, and from the print dialog box, choose the option to save as PDF. It would take a while to retroactively do that for all your documents, but in the future, you can do it whenever you create or edit a document and it's pretty seamless. You would still need to keep your original Word files so that you can go back and edit if needed. I always keep my Word and PDF files in the same directory with the same names so it's easy to find whichever version I need.
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: treceveu on May 04, 2020, 06:57:38 PM
I’m in the same boat - I have several hundred Word docs in my repertoire.  This is so frustrating..
A concern: I’m a prolific user of annotations - it’s one of my favourite BH features and my docs are peppered with them, and I often change them or add/delete annotations.
Will this annotation “layer” be lost in the process of converting from Word to PDF?
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: treceveu on May 05, 2020, 07:39:47 AM
Further to this, I've tried a few things and I think this is a dismal game changer for me.  I have about 800 Word docs in my repertoire, many of them are heavily annotated.  This is the result of a three year investment in building my BH platform, and at 70yrs old, I don't know if I can, or want to, literally re-create every document.  Some questions I hope you can answer:

(1) is there a way to make the annotation 'overlay' on my Word docs follow to a PDF duplicate should I create one?
(2) if not, is there a way to capture my annotated Word doc view and save it as a PDF? This is not a great second choice, as now my annotations would be unalterable, but...
(3) what will happen in Dec 2020 when the Word format is no longer supported?  Will the docs not open at all or...?
(4) to my knowledge, you can't annotate or change font in the lyrics field ? Is this likely to change in the future?
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: arlo on May 05, 2020, 08:02:39 AM
1) If you create PDFs with the same name and batch-upload them as I mentioned, BandHelper will swap the files but leave the annotations and other metadata like user assignments. You can get the same result if you go to Repertoire > Documents, click Edit for a single document and upload the new PDF to that page. You will only lose your annnotations if you delete the Word file from BandHelper and then add the PDF as a separate step.

3) The Word documents will no longer appear in the app. You can preview the upcoming change by turning off Help > Utilities > Use Old Document Viewer. I'll turn this off for everyone at some point before December as a stronger reminder to address the change before the deadline.

4) You cannot annotate in the Lyrics field, because the annotation positions would change relative to the text whenever you edit the text or change the text size. There are 4 font choices, 12 color choices, plus bold, italic and underline.
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: Geoff on May 16, 2020, 04:07:14 AM

As you noted, there are several batch-conversion tools available, but I haven't used any myself. I could give some a try if nobody else chimes in on this.


Thanks Arlo. Yes, would be grateful for your recommendation of a batch-conversion tool to replace all Word docs with corresponding PDFs.

Maybe too much to ask(?), but you could imagine a recommended tool being wrapped up as a button in Bandhelper that is labelled "convert all Word files to PDF" :-)
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: arlo on May 17, 2020, 10:53:23 AM
Here's an easy, free, web-based tool that converts Word, RTF and PowerPoint files to PDF:

https://tools.pdf24.org/en/convert-to-pdf

Just drag and drop multiple files onto the web page, then click Convert, then click Download.
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: Geoff on May 17, 2020, 01:43:43 PM
Thanks very much - will check that out!
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: Geoff on May 18, 2020, 11:21:43 AM
Just finished the process - works good with that free tool you mentioned. It seems to be able to handle about 30 Word docs at a time. Thanks!
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: joebear on September 21, 2020, 11:12:23 AM
Is support for .txt (i.e., ASCII) going away too?
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: arlo on September 21, 2020, 02:02:53 PM
No, support for .txt files will remain the same.
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: treceveu on September 27, 2020, 11:43:26 AM
Hello Arlo
I have successfully converted my 900+ Word docs to PDFs using the pdf24 tool and zipped them in a folder as per directions.  When I try to do the Batch Import, I get the following orange message banner appear in the BandHelper page:

"The import file was not processed because it exceeds the 4 MB size limit (621)"

My zipped file is 38MB (the unzipped file is 42MB so not a great deal of compression going on here?).
Should I be batch importing a number of small zipped files or is there something else going on here?
Thanks.

Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: arlo on September 27, 2020, 08:28:42 PM
It sounds like you're uploading to the Repertoire > Songs page, and you should be on the Repertoire > Documents page.
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: treceveu on October 05, 2020, 07:43:02 PM
I thought I was careful not to do that, but in any event, I backed out and tried again and have now successfully imported the PDF batch and replaced the Word docs.  I had to manually tinker with about 20% of the docs - mostly, I think, because of conflicts with some of my naming conventions, but in any event, it’s done now and BandHelper I continues to work fine for me.  Now if I could only find some venues to play during this Covid stuff...

Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: tbecke on October 18, 2020, 01:39:42 PM
Hi Arlo, just wanted to say that I was able to easily download all of my Word Docs, convert them to PDFs then upload them with the Batch Upload feature. Whole process took less than 30 minutes. They PDFs actually have more clarity on my iPads than the Word docs did. So everything is up and working now. Thanks for the assistance and the Band Helper App. I'm in 3 bands and it is a tremendous tool for practice and live gigs. Keep up the great work.
Tony Becke
Title: Re: Changes to Documents on iOS
Post by: arlo on October 18, 2020, 05:33:18 PM
Okay, great!