[Scribus] Re: Test and Hello ...

P Linnell plinnell
Mon Mar 3 07:40:02 CET 2003

Welcome all. 

I am the primary documenter for Scribus and will be following this list
carefully. I get often support requests, which I am pleased to answer.
Now that the list is up, I would prefer questions sent to the list so
everyone can benefit from replies and discussion.  Please see my
comments in-line.

On Sun, 2003-03-02 at 22:54, Bryan J. Smith wrote:
> On Sun, 2003-03-02 at 22:49, Steve Herrick wrote:
> > I also am not using Scribus professionally (I'm curious if anyone is), but I
> > would like to in the near future. I'm still struggling with fonts displaying
> > correctly (versions 0.9.5 - 0.9.8 beta). 

The fonts issue is a high one, but difficult to solve at the moment -
not hopeless though. One of the difficulties is the wide variations in
the way Linux distros handle fonts. Xfree86 4.3.0 is now out and Keith
Packard's fontconfig while not perfect is under very active development.
This will bring a lot of sanity to font configuration in Xfree86. The
transition will take some time.

As for using Scribus professionally, among other uses, I have actually
made a training manual for Pagemaker 7.0  and Distiller 5.0 for a client
with 0.5.8.:0

I also use it to document network layouts with Dia (which is also
getting quite good). I import png's and EPS from Dia and then save as
PDF for my clients. 

If time allows, I will create the whole set of documentation with
Scribus as an example of how it has progressed. 

One of my clients is in the process of acquiring a high end PS3 RIP for
digital 4C prints and film output. So, very soon, I will be able to
regularly test Scribus PDF and PS output against Indy and all the rest.
I have also exported  PS files with level 3 PS from Scribus and
Distilled with Acrobat 5.0.5 at 3600 dpi. No problems. The biggest PDF I
have created with Scribus is about 50 MB with a 2 page complex vector
map via EPS from Corel Draw. Before the recent changes to the PDF
exporter this would take a huge amount of memory 400-500 Mb or real
> I'm also new.  I just installed the 0.9.8 beta and came across the same
> issue on Red Hat 8.0.  I'm going to try 0.8 next.

There will be no real difference in the on screen rendering IME on RH
8.0 and you will lose some of the new features and bug fixes. 0.9.6+
compiles *a lot* cleaner with Gcc 3.2 in my experience. One of the
things I cam honestly say about Scribus is I have experienced few code
regressions going from stable to devel versions. Even going from Qt2 to
Qt3 went quite smoothly.
> BTW, what distro is Scribus largely developed on?  Debian?

I think Franz has a heavily upgraded version of Suse 7.0. I am sure he
will confirm at some point.
> > InDesign is the last reason I haven't switched to Linux 100%.
> Tell Adobe.  Everytime you think something like that, remember tell the
> vendor!  You'd be surprised how much it matters!

Yes, thats true, but I actually had a mini debate about this with Chris
Cox, who is one of the key Photoshop developers. 

The gist: Adobe tested the Linux market with Framemaker, along with
watching Corel's Linux financial losses and concluded the Linux market
is unwilling to pay the same price for Adobe professional applications
as Win and Mac users. (There I think they are dead wrong.)  Plus, some
technical arguments about problems with supporting the different

Knowing how demanding Photoshop and Indesign are on hardware and require
a near perfect OS install, I can somewhat sympathize with this. I
support these apps professionally.  IMHO Adobe support is really quite
good compared to most commercial ISV's (i.e. Quark). You get the sense
they do care.

> If they get enough requests, they've got to port it.  Unlike Intuit they
> don't have a "we'll crush you if you port to Linux" threat from
> Microsoft (like Intuit does from Microsoft on Quicken/Quickbooks,
> despite the 2M+ requests for ports).  Adobe is fairly independent from
> Microsoft.

Adobe has many skilled people there. But they keep their own counsel, so
you never know what to expect.
> Until then, I'm getting an iBook because of things like Adobe Indesign
> and Macromedia Dreamweaver.  But even Macromedia ported its
> server/development software (e.g., ColdFusion) to Linux out of demand. 
> Hopefully the desktop software will get their shortly too.
> [ There isn't a good HTML "WYSIWYM + Content Manager" app for Linux
> either, although several Sourceforge projects are working on one.  You
> either have WYSIWYM (e.g., Mozilla Composer) or non-WYSIWYM Content
> Managers (e.g., Quanta, Bluefish, etc...) ]

I have less use for these personally, but for my modest html needs
Bluefish has been good and getting better. My own objection to the whole
suite of Dreamweaver and Go-live type apps is the tendency to create
some ugly non compliant html. I am converting all the Scribus on-line
docs to XHTML and find maintaining them much easier this way. As I
understand CSS better, it will be even easier.

> > When Scribus is ready for the big time, I'll be free at last. 

We are getting there...

I think Franz has done a remarkable job, considering he has essentially
been a one man show without any outside support. Like me, a real job and
family. Considering the feature set right now compared to when I started
working in earnest on the documentation, it really is amazing how
capable Scribus has become. The PDF features, IMHO are the best short of
the full version of Acrobat or Indesign on any platform. 

> Word processes like MS Word try to be a cross of
> both typeset and DTP and _fail_ at both.

Wise words..As any experience pre-press person about the "joys" of MS
Publisher or handling Word art..

Peter Linnell

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