What exactly is the issue with block based editors?


On this forum, I have seen many MPU members prefer not to use a block based editor. This includes Craft and Notion etc.

I am genuinely curious as to why? I use Notion and typying on a block based seems fine to me. I also find it useful at times where I can select a block and move it to another section of the document.

Perhaps, I am missing something obivous here. I kindly request your guidance.

I think if you try selecting text from part of one block and part from an adjacent block simultaneously you’ll see just one of the frustrations. Wrangling text is a frustrating experience for long complex writing. For meeting notes or a blog post it is fine.


I think this is why I have not found block based editors to be an issue. My long form writing is on Ulysses and that is fine.

Notion and Craft is for short notes etc and it works well for that.

For work, I write reports that at at least 50 pages long on a monthly basis and these are written in MS WORD.

Ironic isn’t it, the app that brings home the bacon is MS WORD and I have no choice to use anything else. CORPORATE LIFE.

It amuses me when there isn’t choice, I just focus and get the job done. When I have the choice, I spend a lot of my time looking for the best tool for the job

Drafts isn’t like that - but then Drafts’ mode that lets you move blocks around isn’t - to my mind - advanced enough. I’d like arbitrary actions on blocks in that mode, for example.

There has to be a “do both” happy medium.

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I’m actually trying Apple Notes again. I like the new features, especially Quick Notes. I don’t like AN export but in a worse case scenario, I can import them to DT and convert them as needed. The syncing issue I’ve experienced in the past so far has not reared its ugly head. The jury is still out on this. Obsidian is my go to app for all research based work. It is also good for long form writing, though I still don’t like my long-form writing littered with MD syntax and I can’t “glue” docs/sheets together like one can in Ulysses and Scrivener. I’m experimenting with my text residing in a folder as a Vault in Obsidian but adding that folder/vault as an external folder to Ulysses and doing the writing there while also having access in Obsidian. This may be the “best of both worlds.”

As to MS Word, I don’t care for it either but it is the best tool for what it is designed for–corporate writing.

Scrivener solves the problem of working across blocks by having “Scrivenings” mode which basically turns the document (or subdocument) into one long linear document like you would see in a word processor. You can also easily merge or split blocks when desired.

Yes, I use Scrivener and that is one of my favorite features. However, the issue I was responding to was Craft’s block-based system. :slightly_smiling_face:

The issue that you usually can’t easily select text across multiple blocks without selecting the entirety of them aside, you often have to deal with proprietary lock-ins (complicated exports, no support for local files, no direct support for open-standard file formats) and an UI overhead, which takes a noticeable toll on performance.