[scribus-dev] Text import
christoph-schaefer at gmx.de
Wed May 29 07:13:52 UTC 2013
Gesendet: Dienstag, 28. Mai 2013 um 14:35 Uhr
Von: "Louis Desjardins" <louis.desjardins at gmail.com>
An: "Scribus Development Mailing List" <scribus-dev at lists.scribus.net>
Cc: "Private Scribus Development List" <scribus-team at lists.scribus.net>
Betreff: Re: [scribus-dev] Text import
2013/5/28 "Christoph Schäfer" <christoph-schaefer at gmx.de>
Speaking to people of the typesetting and page design profession who generally acknowledge the achievements of Scribus, a generally recurring theme is the lack of support for RTF (they genuinely hate DOC and DOCX for all the problems these file formats create). They also wonder why it's not possible to export the content of text frames to RTF, HTML or ODT.
Being able to export/import a text content with its stylesheets is a must.
The round trip from WP to DTP to WP should be doable without issue.
The typographic features should also be transferable from one app to the other without issue. If something cannot be handled the same way, we need to discuss between teams from WP and DTP. At least, the ODT guys and the Scribus guys could concentrate on polishing the edges so both apps fit together in terms of typographic features.
The future seems to me along that path.
Considering the growing need for multi-media publishing, print and digital, I think that every aspects of text handling would need to be looked at in such a way as to insure users can easily switch from one to the other without having to reformat.
The more easy it is to work back and forth from WP to DTP will also ease the work of proofreaders when for any reason heavy editing is needed. Going back to a WP in the hand of a dedicated proofreader is far more efficient when that happens than asking production people to enter each corrections by hand in the DTP app (with the risk of introducing new typos). Being able to reimport the edited text into Scribus while keeping the formatting is a goal we can aim at.
All what you say is true, but unfortunately we need to make one step first, which is being able to export/import formatted text in generally accepted exchange formats. This would mean RTF, ODT and HTML first, and perhaps DOCX, ICML and XTags, perhaps DocBook, next.
- ODT writing is available via Qt. Import already works, including styles.
- I mentioned RTF parsers in my original e-mail. We need not support sophisticated RTF features (other DTP programs don't do this either), just all text formatting options, including styles, supported by Scribus, and throw away the rest (as we already do with ODT and SXW).
- HTML is even more basic (at least if we exclude CSS).
- As for DOCX, see my comments re RTF (Microsoft always updates its RTF specs before updating DOC/DOCX).
- Regarding XTG, we do have an importer, but it's currently deadly broken because it crashes Scribus. There can't be any improvements until this bug has been fixed.
- ICML is theoretically covered by the the IDML importer, which is already quite good and becoming better, now that users have started uploading sample files.
DOCX, XTG, ICML are a luxury, and other formats (DocBook, WordPerfect, TMD) even more so, although someone might be tempted to write a WPD importer using libwpd before we get useful RTF import/export, but I consider RTF, ODT and HTML to be essential.
As to your remarks regarding the necessity of a discussion between "the ODT guys and the Scribus guys", I'd say this isn't necessary, because ODF is an international standard handled by OASIS and ISO. We only need to implement ODT export for formatted text according to the standard and as being made available as a low-hanging fruit via Qt ;)
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