[Scribus] frantic noobie questions

J. MacPhail jrm
Wed Aug 31 12:36:30 CEST 2005

Hello, people.

I'm attempting to lay out a 48-page magazine that was previously done
in PageMaker.  Despite fairly extensive past experience with word
processing and typesetting with plain TeX, I am new to DTP.  So I have
a lot of questions.

1. Margins.  What confuses me is that the margin setting seem to be
used in two different paradigms: for some people, the margins are a
"rule" -- defining a clipping region outside of which nothing is
printed; for others, the margins are a guideline, and the clipping
region is the edge of the page.  My inclination would be to use margin
settings as guidelines for the main body of the material, so I will
have a headline above the margins.  Is this purely a matter of taste,
or are there serious traps lurking here?

2. Colour management implementation.  Our colour usage is simplistic,
and it would certainly be desirable (thought not absolutely necessary)
to send PDF/X-3 to our printer.  I've installed from
debian.scribus.net the packages scribus-cvs_1.3.0-1_i386.deb and
scribus-icc_0.1-1_all.deb, but it still is very unclear to me how to
set up colour management.  Is it realistic to create a document
without CMS, and then apply CMS so as to have PDF/X-3 output?  Does
using CMS put much extra strain on the software, in terms of file
sizes and so on?

3. Tables.  I have lots of tables in which each row is just a single
line of text entries.  The Scribus table support is not intuitively
obvious to me, and I wish there were a mini-howto explaining all about
it.  How do you format text so that it will be read into different
array entries instead of the first box?  What happens if the desired
table goes beyond a single page?  The table elements seem to be text
boxes, so what happens if you want graphics?

4. Getting at a PageMaker file.  Even though I have not used
PageMaker, a mini-howto on migrating from PageMaker to Scribus would
be very helpful to me in knowing what to ask from my predecessor.
What software exists that can read a PageMaker file -- for example, is
there a gratis demo vesion or anything?

5. Standardized items.  Let's see if I have this right.  The scrapbook
is for saving content.  The styles are used within the story editor
for local text formatting, and it seems to be a matter of taste
whether to use the story editor or something else such as the
OpenOffice word processor -- like in programming with an integrated
development environment, where using an external editor is reasonable.
Templates are for the structure of a single page or a whole document.
So I left confused about how to store the structure of just part of a
page.  For example, if I develop some table format that I would like
to reuse, what should I do?


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