• Reference Guide

Text Formatting Styles

A style is a name assigned to particular text formatting. Since text formatting applies either to individual characters or to entire paragraphs, there are also two types of styles: character styles and paragraph styles. Styles are used mainly to format text in a rich text editor. This technique has several advantages. First of all, it facilitates formatting because you only need to select one style instead of specifying repeatedly individual attributes (font type, font size, italics …). It is therefore convenient to create formatting styles for frequent texts segments such as individual headings, highlighted text, bullet lists, etc. Styles also help you unify the appearance of the text. Last but not least, if you decide to change the format of a particular element, for example of a heading, and a style has been used for its formatting, it is enough to modify the definition of the style, and the text format is automatically modified everywhere where the style is used.
When you edit text, you can pick a style either in the tool bar containing text formatting attributes or in the character format or paragraph format tool window. Since you can apply a character style to a part of the text and at the same time a paragraph style to the entire paragraph, you will see two separate fields for style selection in the tool bar: one for the paragraph style and the other for the character style.
Sfairadora uses styles for yet another purpose – they determine the format of texts used in presentations (e.g. labels of editing fields, button labels, line editor font, etc.). Modifications of the employed styles immediately affect the appearance of the document texts on the screen.

Text Formatting Styles Window

The window in which you can create and modify text formatting styles is invoked either by the Text formatting styles button at the bottom of the Settings section or by the Settings|Text Formatting Styles menu command.
The window is divided into two panes. The left pane contains a list of all styles while the right pane displays the attributes of the selected style. The contents of the right pane correspond to the contents of the character format or paragraph format tool window; the description of the displayed items is therefore included in the respective chapters. In addition to style attributes you can also specify its name in the right pane. A button for deleting user-defined styles is also present. Styles used in a document are mostly standard – inherited from the system document. These styles have an Inherit button ( ) at the top of the right pane, which is usually pressed down. In this situation the style attributes are derived from the style of the same name in the system document. This allows you to modify broadly used styles in one place – in the system document – and to apply the modification to all documents. If you click the Inherit button and release it, you can modify the attributes of these styles as well.
Every style can be based on another style – this is achieved by the Base on style field. If you select a style here, the newly defined style has all properties equal to those of the parent style except for those that you explicitly modify. You can use the Base on further style button to base the defined style on two different styles and make it a combination of their properties. The new style has those properties of the first style that are not explicitly modified in the second style. The number of styles that can be combined by this technique is not limited.
The definition of paragraph styles contains, in addition, the Style of next paragraph item. This item determines the style of the paragraph created when you hit the Enter key at the end of a paragraph with this style. If no style name is specified, the new paragraph has the same style as the preceding one. Some paragraph types should be followed by paragraphs of a different style; for example, headings should be followed by paragraphs with normal text style.

Style Types

Styles are divided into two main groups – character and paragraph – reflected by the split of the left pane of the style window, and further subdivided into the following subgroups:
♦User-defined styles
styles defined by the user. You can create them as you like using the new item at the bottom of the list.
♦ Standard styles styles predefined by Sfairadora for easier formatting of texts.
♦ Display styles styles used to format texts in controls on the screen. They are listed and explained in the Display Styles chapter.
♦ Windows styles styles reflecting the formatting of certain text types determined by Windows. They cannot be modified on that account. They serve as basis for the display styles. They are listed and explained in the Display Styles chapter too.
♦ Help styles styles used to format texts in help.