Pages 1.0.x: ‘Replace All’ ignores selection

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Pages
October 18th, 2005 • 3:40 pm

This is the kind of flaw that you only find in a 1.0 program… And even then, it’s barely excusable.

Believe it or not, when you bring up the “Find & Replace” window in Pages, enter something to find and something to replace it with, and then press “Replace All,” Pages completely ignores the current selection, and gleefully makes replacements all the way through the entire document.

In other words, there is no way to force Pages to only replace all occurrences of X with Y within a specific section of your document. It’s either the entire document or nothing.

Of course, you can work around this by selecting the section where you want to make the replacements, copying it into a separate document window, making the replacements, and then copying it back into the current document… But really, is this kind of limitation acceptable in a word processor in 2005?

The “Find & Replace” window does have an option to change the scope of the finding/replacing process, if you switch to the “Advanced” pane. But the only options in the “In:” pop-up menu are “Entire Document” and “Main Text Body.” There is no option for “Selection only.”

(And I thought that settings with only two possible options were best handled through a radio button interface rather than a pop-up menu… But that’s another problem, I guess.)

So if you use “Find & Replace” window in Pages, be careful before you hit the “Replace All” button. (Fortunately, you can always undo the multiple replacements immediately after closing the window. But if you don’t notice the problem right away, you might have a nasty surprise down the road…)

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