[Scribus] Tables in Scribus?

Peter Linnell scribusdocs
Thu Jan 8 19:00:54 CET 2004

See my comments in-line - based on current cvs..

On Thu, 2004-01-08 at 12:00, Mardigrafe - Louis Desjardins wrote:
> I think that the most important thing is "keep it simple".
> The vast majority of the people working in the graphic art industry is still on Mac OS 9 
> and work with Quark 4 which was a short upgrade of version 3.32 (and who uses the bezier
>  curves in Quark? we use Illustrator and Photoshop for that). A minority went to 5 (and 
> who uses the tables and the web tools?).

I find the bezier tools and SVG import / export invaluable. SVG has the
potential to become *the* interchange format for vector. Text is the
most difficult. But for the actual artwork its pretty much there. There
are rough edges, but it gets better ever day see http://inkscape.org 

>  And how many upgraded to 6 is certainly one of the best kept secret
>  at Quark's headquarters.

> All this to say, in my humble opinion, that the Scribus team has to concentrate on
>  getting the product to first achieve the basics for the graphic arts and then
>  interact well with the other programs that can complete the work and not try to do
>  everything (that is already well handled by other programs). After that, yes, a step
>  further towards high-end features such as transparency, tables, etc.

Transparency and PDF 1.4 features are well supported and stable - but
need to enabled - it is not by default. I test Scribus PDF will pro
pre-press PDF preflighting tools and they meet very high standards. Its
interesting to note I am finding it easier to bring PDF's from scribus
into Adobe applications, compared to the PDF's generated by other
"professional" DTP apps.

I think where Scribus is head and shoulders above Quark is the PDF
export capabilties which are both powerful, but easy to use. IMO, only
ID 2 beats it - and Scribus can do presentation PDF's unlike any other
app on the planet - except Acrobat itself. 
> You need math typesetting : use Tex but maybe Scribus could integrate
>  a Tex rendering engine. Quark has one (it's an XTension).

Future  - should be a plug-in. The team is in the process of completely
documenting the API, and source code.  Petr Vanek has contributed a
special hyphenation plug-in based on Tex code for the special rules in
Czech lanuguage. He has also written a howto for creating scribus
> What Quark does right, Scribus should do it too (here are a few) : 
> stability,
Gettign there. I use cvs daily and it gets better and better. There is a
new crash handler to protect documents. It works well and saves an
.emergencgy file. I have been working on a project right now without a
single crash today on current cvs.

>  printability,

Excellent if you compile with direct CUPS support. With CUPS, I can use
all the features in a EFI Fiery RIP, just like a Mac or Win machine,
including stapling, binding, duplexing etc, control output options etc. 
We have found a couple of corner cases with CUPS not able to handle
custom page sizes, but 99% of the "it just works" TM.

Out of the box Scribus will print, true ICC color managed CMYK directly
to a RIP or print separations. This includes PS3 stuff like smooth
gradients etc. With a high enough PS version I think 3011.xx, you can
also support transparency. I have output this from Scribus as far back
as 0.9.8.

Scribus also will export EPS directly complete with font embedding.

>  efficiency,
I think Scribus has a good UI and I find using as quick as using ID2 or
Quark - which I use and support end users on. I also note, owing to the
excellent language support Scribus is now in 21 or 22 languages and
adding more is not difficult. 
> lots of keyboard shortcuts including for text formatting
On the list.
>  with stylesheet (one stroke on the keypad and not at least 2 like
>  in InDesign) and handle fonts properly.
On the list. 
> What's really missing :
> - Bleed
> - Drop caps

Can be done manually. An example is in the docs. 
> - Point size and leading at least in 10th of a point

Point size Done Leading or "Linespacing" ni 10th of a point - Done

> - Multicolumn in a text box (but I think this is fixed) - Done
> - Keyboard shortcut to apply stylesheet
> - Import/Export text at least from/to OpenOffice format (including stylesheets)
> - Improve the typesetting engine (user should be allowed to define a few more settings such as in Quark)
> - Allow user to define hyphenation exceptions (import/export user defined lists from OpenOffice)
> - Pica measurements on base 12 and not in decimals

 - on the list
> - Spot colors (but Pantone is proprietary...) 
A toughy. but Scribus will import named colors in a DCS 2.0 EPS
> - A find/replace feature with real horse power (this has always been clumsy in Quark) 

> : multiline... and beeing able to save that search/replace table to use it in other documents... would be nice!
> - Various typographic spaces (thin, en and em spaces) breakable and non-breakable ... 
> searchable in the find/replace feature
> - Ability to define the language of hyphenation on a paragraph basis 
> (or at least on a text box basis)

Done - via the properties palette
> >From what I see now, Scribus is very close to a fully professionnal tool.

Some other things to note:

Scribus supports Unicode and right to left languages - an expensive
add-on to Quark
> The Scribus team can be proud!
> Do you plan to port it on Mac OS X ?

At the moment none of the devel team has full time to an OSX box, but
Scribus has been packaged by Martin Costabel, who has been very generous
in contributing fixes and updating FINK packages. At moment it is just a
resource constraint. Patches and help on OSX would be welcomed. If it
has not been said before, we *do* appreciate Martin's efforts.
> Best regards,
> Louis Desjardins
Your analysis is fair and shows you've been in this business for a
while, like I have. You should know the Scribus team has a couple of 40+
gray beards..:) I cut my DTP teeth on PM 1.0 ;)

join us on #scribus at irc.freenode.net - nice friendly place !

Best regards,

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