[Scribus] Wishlist...

Peter Linnell scribusdocs
Fri Mar 28 02:40:55 CET 2003

On Thu, 2003-03-27 at 15:46, Mark Muller wrote:
> Here goes most important for design/repro first...
> 1. 100% reliable font rendering - could be Xfree86 but maybe like Oo you could 
> do your own rendering ?

When fonts are installed properly - sometimes not an easy task - the
rendering output is quite good in PDF and postscript output from
Scribus. Franz has written his own libraries instead of relying on the
Qt libs.  Beleive it or not, I actually have some training manuals for
Pagemaker users I made with Scribus. Why ? It was basically easier and
> 2. Bleed & Cropmarks ? How can anyone work without Bleed and cropmarks ?

I think this could be done through some sort of postscript operator..
Paul? Franz? 

It too has been on my wish list, but this is a function which would
probably be used by less than 10% of users..  

> 3. Ability to import Quark/Indesign files from a Mac or PC !! then we really 
> could use Scribus in a production enviroment and blow open the whole DTP 
> industry with a low cost - NIL - DTP package.

Importing proprietary binary files is not easy. Markzware gets a pretty
penny for their converters..

In my honest opinion, I think native vector import via SVG or similar is
the most important at the momeny, as it is preferable from a quality
perspective to keep objects in vector if at all possible. 
> 4. Ability to output separations to High end Printers. Brisque, Trueflow etc.

You can already print simple separations in a postscript file in the
printer dialog.  With the new RIP's you can drop a composite PDF in and
it will do the seps and go right to plate. In the US here, that trend
has really caught on.  18 months ago it was a struggle to get many
printers to accept PDF at all. Now many *prefer* it. 

I have a lot of hope for PDF/X-3, which Scribus supports, as it allows
one to keep color managed images with the creating device ICC tag
(scanners or a sensible workspace like Adobe RGB) in RGB until the last

Because it is a standard which is *sort of press* neutral, this I think
is needed for greater acceptance of color management process for
designers and creatives, especially when working with Photoshop and Illy

Right now, it is not easy nor intuitive for end users to grasp RGB to
CMYK conversions.  I would think for many they would rather let the
press folks get a good representative PDF print and let them adjust
colors accordingly, as they have the know how of transfer functions and
inks to get it right.. Currently, even for well intended designers and
users it_is_not_easy.

> 5. Constrant of certain tools, Line tool for example 
> 6. Smaller rulers -- current ones are ugly !! :) although I do appreciate 
> them.
> 7. Better Toolbox - Adobe have cracked it with the Indesign tools even quark's 
> is nicer. smaller icons etc.

The new measurement palette is a nice improvement and a lot of credit
goes to Steve Herrick for his suggestions and mockups. It is also
important to understand to a certain extent, an application is dependent
on the toolkit with which it is developed for the widgets etc..  You can
create custom widgets, but it can be a time consuming process.  One
reason Adobe apps look a little different from typical Windows/Mac apps
is they developed and use their own UI toolkit called vamp..

Today, I spent a good part of the day using both Quark Xpress 4 and 5 on
both Macs and PC's, as well as Indesign and PM on Win2k PC's.  The right
click context menus in Scribus - in my strongly held opinion best them
hands down.. 
> 8. Better 'crawling ants' Current red ones look a bit cheap and cheerful - no 
> ?
See above..
> 9. Hehe - 'Drop Shadow with Transparency plugin'  - only hoping !!

When Gimp gets to 2.0, cmyk support is planned and already Gimp does
nice drop shadows in RGB.

> erm. there are probably a few more I will post when I get more time. Just go 
> back from work - commercial printers in the UK - would love to see this go 
> into a production enviroment. I have been banging on about Linux at various 
> repro/print companies for two or three years, slowly they are getting the 
> idea with their servers but soon maybe I will be able to encourage them into 
> Open Source software for the mainstream work ??

Mind you anything which is serious about DTP on Linux is quite young but
maturing rapidly. Like Scribus, Sodipodi is becoming a really good
vector editor. I would encourage you to keep an eye on that project as
well.  the libtiff (which provides TIFF support)  project which has been
bit quiet has seen some renewed activity and a new version is in alpha/
beta testing. 

I sort of work in the same world, in that I support DTP clients, like
publishers and ad agencies. That is why I volunteered to work on the
docs and work on testing. 

I think what Franz has accomplished in two years is really amazing.
Basically by himself part time and more recently with Paul Johnson's
welcome contributions. 

Those of us who have spent a lot of time with Scribus are soemtimes too
close to see the progress. It is certainly appreciated that you can see
the potential and the progress so far.


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