Bug 138508 - Provide possibility to have single column footnotes on multi-column pages
Summary: Provide possibility to have single column footnotes on multi-column pages
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Writer (show other bugs)
(earliest affected)
Inherited From OOo
Hardware: All All
: medium enhancement
Assignee: Not Assigned
Depends on:
Blocks: Footnote-Endnote
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2020-11-26 11:13 UTC by Dick Tsui
Modified: 2022-12-05 16:07 UTC (History)
5 users (show)

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:

Multi columns one footnote (26.16 KB, application/pdf)
2020-11-26 16:29 UTC, Timur
Test DOCX (26.80 KB, application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document)
2021-07-28 07:19 UTC, Timur
Test DOCX and footnote options compared in MSO and LO (267.88 KB, image/png)
2021-07-28 09:07 UTC, Timur

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Description Dick Tsui 2020-11-26 11:13:54 UTC
I am in a situation that requires me to cite sources as footnotes under each page, I thought 2 column text with 1 column footnotes would be the best for visibility of both the text and the citations as quite a number of them are internet links.

I suggest adding an ability to attach footnotes to sections of the page. This should allow more flexible footnote placements and also make footnote suitable for annotations. If there is more text than the container could hold it will move the current footnote to the end of the page or the next container, displacing the main text as it should. Restricting the amount of dedicated footnote section to 1 per page should be enough to test the water, otherwise it should go from up to down and left to right. The footer can also serve for the same purpose

Since I know nothing about the XML format and how Libreoffice work at a high level(programming wise). If it is impossible due to either format restriction or code structure please let me know since I have seen people having similar problems on ask.libreoffice.org

Steps to Reproduce:
1.Add columns using Format>Columns or Format>Section 
2.Add footnote to text in the columned text

Actual Results:
Footnotes always columned according to the referenced text and is always a footnote

Expected Results:
Able to create sections that hold footnotes directly on the page. And footnotes will be placed inside the section until it is filled

Reproducible: Always

User Profile Reset: No

Additional Info:
Version: (x64)
Build ID: d7547858d014d4cf69878db179d326fc3483e082
CPU threads: 4; OS: Windows 10.0 Build 18363; UI render: Skia/Vulkan; VCL: win
Locale: en-US (en_US); UI: en-US
Calc: CL
Comment 1 Roman Kuznetsov 2020-11-26 11:46:09 UTC
Don't think it's a good idea at all. I think it will be a typographical violation

Can you attach some example from existing book/magazine/etc. with that layout as you want?
Comment 2 Dick Tsui 2020-11-26 14:16:12 UTC
I found a forum post on openoffice talking about it in 2017
The layout I need is the one on the last reply.
Now I think of it forget the annotation part since it will not attach itself to the end of a paragraph if it is in a section
Comment 3 Timur 2020-11-26 16:21:37 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 4 Timur 2020-11-26 16:29:01 UTC
Created attachment 167599 [details]
Multi columns one footnote
Comment 5 Timur 2021-07-28 07:19:04 UTC
Created attachment 173902 [details]

This can be confirmed. 
MSO also has this as an option in Footnotes, to choose number of columns: Match section layout or set 1 to 4. 
Here is example DOCX.
Comment 6 Timur 2021-07-28 09:07:13 UTC
Created attachment 173907 [details]
Test DOCX and footnote options compared in MSO and LO
Comment 7 Heiko Tietze 2021-08-12 08:40:43 UTC
Footnotes belong to the footer of a page, if you seek for arbitrary positioned annotations I suggest endnotes and bug 129036 requesting to place it anywhere.

If the question is to make footnotes not following the page style you could use sections for the text, admittedly inconvenient. But obviously there is a compatibility issue with MSO. What do you think, Regina & Miklos?
Comment 8 Miklos Vajna 2021-08-12 14:32:18 UTC
The screenshot hints that Word supports 1col footnotes when we have 2 columns and Writer doesn't support that. If that's indeed the case, then improving Writer to render these docx files correctly would be a reasonable request, I would say.
Comment 9 Attila Szűcs 2021-09-23 08:02:55 UTC
At MS Word the column numbers of footnotes are independent from the page content.
Footnotes have a setting about column number, that can be set to auto,1,2,3,4
Auto will use the column number of the first section on the page.

There can be many section on the page with different column numbers, but there can be only 1 place for footnotes.
(that is at the page bottom.. or under the last text on the page)

At Writer footnotes can be only 1 column, but they can be placed not only at the end of the page, but even to the end of a column.
So footnotes can be at many places in a page, that is a nice improvement compared to word.
This is used to simulate a few cases of Word footnotes.. but it generate other issues..
Writer can display multy-column-like footnotes as word, only if the column_end==page_end, and the footnotes have the same column number as the section...

Tu support footnoes from MS word, I think, multy-column footnotes should be implemented, where the column number can be set independently from section/page style column numbers.
Comment 10 Dieter 2022-12-05 16:07:42 UTC
Couldn't believe, that this is not possible with LO.
+1 for adding this feature