4. Spacing issues

The global paper layout is determined by three factors: the page layout, the line breaks, and the spacing. These all influence each other. The choice of spacing determines how densely each system of music is set. This influences where line breaks are chosen, and thus ultimately, how many pages a piece of music takes.

Globally speaking, this procedure happens in four steps: first, flexible distances (‘springs’) are chosen, based on durations. All possible line breaking combinations are tried, and a ‘badness’ score is calculated for each. Then the height of each possible system is estimated. Finally, a page breaking and line breaking combination is chosen so that neither the horizontal nor the vertical spacing is too cramped or stretched.

Settings which influence layout may be placed in two blocks. The \paper {...} block is placed outside any \score {...} blocks and contains settings that relate to the entire document. The \layout {...} block is placed within a \score {...} block and contains settings for that particular score. If you have only one \score {...} block the two have the same effect. In general the commands shown in this chapter can be placed in either.


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