Is 8,192 characters just not enough?
Do you often find yourself wanting to work on multiple nodes at the same time?
Do you want to help out the nefarious E2 lag problem by writing, proofreading, and formatting your nodes offline?

the E2 Offline Scratchpad

Cross-Platform version 2.0 in the works

insanefuzzie and I are porting it to C++/wxWindowsLibs.

This will allow it to run on Windows, Linux, Macintosh, and BSD.
(or pretty much any POSIX-compliant system)
(To be placed on my new version notify list, please /msg me, including if you only want messages pertaining to new versions, or bug fixes as well...)

New Features in 1.4
(Heavily Requested features in bold)

List formatter  ·  Spellchecker  ·  Undo function  ·  Sourcecode formatter  ·  Floating HTML button bar  ·  Improved keyboard shortcuts  ·  Ability to print current preview  ·  Ability to change font in Edit box  ·  Sizable edit box on main window  ·  Ability to revert to the saved copy of a node  ·  Support for all pre-packaged EKW Themes<  ·  Ability to toggle link underlining in preview pane  ·  Find, Replace, Global search and replace options  ·  Import / Export ability to *.node and *.nodes files  ·  Ability to change preview pane update frequency  ·  Select All / Select None / Copy current node to clipboard

Basically, what it does is allow you to write, edit, hardlink, and preview your nodes in customizable themes; all in realtime, all offline (so there's no contribution to database lag). I wrote this to try to alleviate some of the server load here... It works with many nodes at a time, and there's no limit to how long any node can be... (well, save free hard drive space, that is) It is written in Visual Basic 6, and the source code is distributed with the binaries.

It is tested and working in Windows 95, Windows 98 (even if IE isn't installed), Windows NT 4, Windows ME, Windows XP, and Windows 2000 so far. If it's working for you and your OS isn't listed here, please /msg me.

The Install File is at:

I've been getting questions like this, so I should make it clear: This program is free. I wrote it for the family, and I want no money for it. If you feel you should pay something, please send all donations here.


Future Revisions:

Version 1.6.0 - Due Second Quarter 2002
(sorry, y'all... I've taken off more than a week of work to write this... if I'm going to pay my bills this month, I have to take a break for a bit from making updates)

  • Ability to turn off sounds directly in pad (currently, you have to do it from the sound control panel)
  • Ability to post a node directly to E2 from the scratchpad. (RainDropUp's idea)
  • Ability to change the ratio of the edit box's height to the preview box's height. (This will probably involve me writing my own ActiveX control... could prove tricky)
  • Add a status bar so you can tell where a pipelink leads to by pointing at it...
  • Any other suggestions? /msg me! :-)

Thanks to all of you who have helped me with ideas, testing, bugs, publicity, and deployment.

This program wouldn't be near as functional without your input.

Aresds · alex · BlackJak · Booyaa · brassmule · Cahla · ConfusionTheWaitress · (darsi) · drownzsurf · freshmint · Great Neb · godling · Jetifi · kenata · kidas · liveforever · Mitzi · panamaus · RainDropUp · Ryouga · Saige · sakke · strawberry · Teiresias · vladkornea · wertperch

Thanks most of all to alex, freshmint, kenata, and RainDropUp. Your contributions to this project can't be summed up in words...

This Node Composed in the E2 Offline Scratchpad

The E2 Scratch Pad is a very nice feature, but as many noders here I prefer to use my powerful text editor and write my nodes offline. E2 applies special styles to the text (CSS) and the result is unfortunately sometimes very different from what would be expected.

Here is how to create a simple HTML E2 Offline Scratch Pad. It is not a program and it is very easy to use. Furthermore, even if E2 changes (a little) the steps will remain the same. Using this method does not mean you don't need to test your writeups in the real E2 Scratch Pad anymore. It only makes noding easier.

Just follow these simple steps :

  • Copy the E2 CSS stylesheet into a directory. You can download the stylesheet from
  • Create a blank HTML file (for example my_node.html) and copy the HTML code below.
  • Write your node within the <BODY> and </BODY> tags.
  • Open it in your favorite web browser to test it.
If you are using the Ekw theme, you should copy the stylesheet from instead and modify the line that shows href="styledef.css" to href="username.css".
---8<--- E2 offline scratch pad ---8<---

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN"
<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="styledef.css"/> 
<title>E2 Off-Line Scratch Pad</title>


bgcolor="#ffffff" text="#000000" link="#003366"
vlink="#7f7f66" alink="#cccc99" topmargin="0"
marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" marginleft="2"
leftmargin="2" marginright="2" rightmargin="2"

<!-- write your node below -->


---8<--- E2 offline scratch pad ---8<---

Future additions :

A JavaScript piece of code could be added so it parses the brackets and converts them to dummy links so the result would be even more realistic. I'm not sure this is possible but I bet it is.

E2 also filters tags that are submitted (for example TABLE tags). It would be a good idea if the Offline E2 Scratch Pad was able to strip out those tags too.

While dann's offline scratchpad is a very useful tool, there seems to be something missing....Ah yes, there are no shortcut keys listed in any of dann's documentation, and only a handful are visible to the user. However, with the work dann has done, he can be forgiven for not listing them down. So I've taken it upon myself (in response to someone else) to compile a list of them here. These are sure to come in handy for anyone who uses this program, especially since many hate to move a hand to their mouse while typing. So, without further ado, here is a fairly comprehensive list:

Formatting Tags

  • Ctrl + U: Inserts <u></u> tags
  • Ctrl + I: Inserts <i> </i> tags
  • Ctrl + B: Inserts <b></b> tags
  • Ctrl + [: Inserts <small></small> tags
  • Ctrl + ]: Inserts <big></big> tags
  • Ctrl + | (line): Inserts [], if a word is highlighted, it will make the word into a hardlink
  • Ctrl + Enter: Inserts a <br> tag plus moves the cursor to a new line.
  • Alt + R: Insert a <hr> tag
  • Alt + P: Inserts <p></p> tags
  • Alt + A: Inserts <ul></ul> tags
  • Alt + J: Inserts <pre></pre> tags
  • Alt + K: Inserts <tt></tt> tags
  • Alt + L: Inserts <li></li> tags
  • Alt + X: Inserts <strike></strike> tags
  • Alt + C: Inserts <ol></ol> tags
  • Alt + M: Inserts <dd> tag


  • F1: Open Help
  • F2: Open Source Code Formatter
  • F3: Open List Formatter
  • F4: Open HTML Controls
  • F5: Update Preview Window
  • F6: Open Preferences
  • F7: Run Spell Checker
  • Ctrl + F: Find
  • Ctrl + G: Find Next
  • Ctrl + H: Search and Replace

Menu Selection

  • F10: Toggle menu bar focus
  • Alt + F: Open File menu item
  • Alt + E: Open Edit menu item
  • Alt + O: Open Options menu item
  • Alt + T: Open Tools menu item
  • Alt + H: Open Help menu item

File Menu Options

  • Ctrl + N or Alt + N: New node
  • Ctrl + S or Alt + S: Save node
  • Ctrl + D or Alt + D: Delete node
  • Ctrl + R: Revert to the last saved version of your currently open node
  • Ctrl + P: Print
  • Ctrl + Q: Quit Program

Other Miscellaneous Shortcuts

  • Alt + F4: Close Program
  • Alt + F6: Toggles focus between the preview/writing window and any open utilities (eg HTML control box, list formetter)
  • Ctrl + A: Select All
  • Ctrl + O: Select None (Unselect All)
  • Ctrl + Y: Copy node to the clipboard (doesn't seem to work)
  • Ctrl + Z: Move cursor to top of page (possibly the same as Ctrl + Y)
  • Ctrl + J or Ctrl + M: Inserts a new line (same as Enter)
  • Ctrl + X: Cut text
  • Ctrl + C: Copy text
  • Ctrl + V: Paste text

This covers just about everything you can do in this program, however i am still looking for shortcut keys for the import and export functions. Drop me a line if you know them, or see any that are wrong/missing.

Happy (offline) Noding

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