Feature Request: Optional Line Break

edited November -1 in Development

Picture the scene(s).

Two churches, one with a huge projected screen, one with a not-so-huge screen. The one with the huge screen is a church (or at least, for church meetings) with a large number of young people attending, the one with the smaller screen a church with a more elderly congregation. Therefore the two different venues need different themes, one with a larger font size than the other.

A lot of the songs in the database are shared between the two churches. There are two problems with this particular scene, and that is when verses or lines split over their respective sections.

Now, the verses bit is fine thanks to the [---] deliminator to give the 'soft' split over lines. [1]

The second part that would be useful is a 'optional line break' deliminator which, if the line splits over two lines. Much as I hate Easy Worship, one thing it does have in its favour is that it 'smartly' puts line breaks in, mainly to avoid orphan words - admittedly it doesn't do it that well sometimes, but it does do it. A lot of songs that have long lines have 'natural' breaks in the lines, either in the rhythm of the song or in the actual structure of the sentence where it would be good to put a line break in. I could put a break in here, but often it seems as if on a larger screen with a smaller font, it looks odd having short lines in the middle of the screen. (I hope that makes sense!)

I know that it's something that could be solved by HTML, and I'm currently looking for what HTML tag may be able to do this, but I can't seem to find one at the moment. I don't know how much work would be needed to make this something OpenLP could handle natively if it's not something that can be done by HTML, but here's hoping!

Sorry, I do tend to ramble sometimes...


FOOTNOTE [1]: Another slight issue with this is that sometimes you might want to put more than one [---] in, but the way the song goes it would be useful to specify which one of the [---]s has priority in the song. But that's not really necessary, just would be nice. Actually, any feature request is more a 'would be nice' than a 'necessity' but there we go. I'm rambling again.


  • edited October 2012


    I had the same thought yesterday. We don't have your specific need for different font sizes, but I am still reluctant to go through all the songs and split their nice 4 line verses into 8 lines (or 6, or 7...).

    It would be a lot nicer to avoid orphan words by always breaking a line 2, 3 or 4 words from the end. Not sure what the best number is, it's dependent on word length. Maybe there's some simple algorithm that determines where to split lines for them to look good on a screen of a given size.

    From a development point of view, I'm not sure that the display widgets allow that much control over individual line breaks, so although it sounds relatively simple, it might not be so in practice. Let's wait for v2 to be officially released first :-)

  • edited October 2012

    It is not that simple to manage optional line splits.

    We have no control over how the text is layed out, different fonts have different sizes then there are shawdows etc to consider.

    I am not sure what you suggest is possible but raise a bug for it to go in the wish list and lets see if any other devs have bright ideas.

  • I know this thread is very old, but we have a similar problem, is there a practical solution by now? Just a small symbol that is not used or something common like <br>
    We have not just use different font sizes, but differen fonts, different resolutions and different aspect ratios, common resolutions are 1920x1080, 1680x1050, 1280x1024 and sometimes maybe 1280x720 and 1024x768
  • Version 2.4.6 already has optional line splits in verses...if the verse won't fit due to font sizes or screen sizes the verse is split on the optional split....if everything fits it does nothing....and you can put in multiple optional splits in a verse.....am I missing what you are requesting?
  • Hi John

    I think you have misunderstood.

    Imagine I want to project the 3rd verse of Amazing Grace. It starts,
    "Through many dangers, toils and snares".
    That's a relatively long line, but it might fit onto one line on a 16:9 screen. On a 4:3 screen, or at a larger font size, it might overflow and be displayed across 2 lines. It would be nice to be able to tell OpenLP to keep it on 1 line if it fits, but to start a new line after "dangers," if it doesn't fit, rather than starting a new line after "toils," or "and". That's where most people would take a breath (if they have to) when singing that line.

    It would be nice, but not essential.
  • Thanks for the clarification!  I'll add this to the issue list as a feature request if it is not there already!  

    I can think of one workaround that might help....but it would not be as good as letting OpenLP take care of it!

    If I needed to support both wide screen and standard screen widths, I would copy the song then change the name to have either '(13x9)' or '(4x3)' before the name of the song....This would take more time to setup and would result in duplicate songs, but once done I could select the song by the screen format and know it was setup for the screen format!  I would also assign my themes to the songs.....but I do that already!

    You could create songbooks or topics as apposed to changing titles.  Again you would have duplicate songs, but you could use the filter in Songs to group the songs by either songbook or topic.

  • Filters and renaming are great ideas, I already thought about that, but doing this for 2000+ songs, is not an option, than I would have over 4000 songs in the database. And we will get from one issue to the next, because we mainly use the remote control, we can't use filters like songbook, author or design. Neither web browser nor App do support this. But this is a completely different topic. The Android App for example should be completely redone, and when I search, the results in the browser should also show a little text preview, because sometimes there are different songs with the same title, and there is no preview option like the desktop app has.
  • 2000+ songs does pose an issue!  I know the developers are talking about how to implement something in the upcoming version of OpenLP....no way to know if anything will happen at this point, but there is talk and that is a good thing!

    I also know that the remotes will be changing to work with the upcoming version of OpenLP...
  • This would be a very useful feature. Will this feature be included in the new version?

  • Here are the related issue on our issue tracker:

    No activity recently, yet someone might have a go at it if they have the time.

  • I just came across this thread and were surprised nobody posted a solution with custom tags.

    Just create a custom tag, for example named "block", with tag "d" and html before "<span style="display:inline-block;">" and html after "</span>".

    I created a testsong with "{d}Test with a very long line,{/d} {d}maybe it works or not but{/d}{d} this test may show it.{/d}

    And a normal line." as content and it works (in my case). I hope it also works for your setups.

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