[Scribus] Quark 7

Christoph Schäfer christoph-schaefer
Wed May 25 19:37:11 CEST 2005

>>>I've found some interesting info on the upcoming quark
> Hi Christoph,
>>Fine! At first glance, Quark seems to implement some features 
>>scribus already has (or will have as soon as 1.4 is out -- I'm 
>>waiting with baited breath ...).
>>To be honest, I don't think scribus developers should look at Quark 
>>anymore as an example. InDesign is state of the art today, and as 
>>much as I dislike proprietary software, it's great. In my view, 
>>scribus should be able to offer an alternative to InDesign without 
>>simply "copying" its features.
> Actually, what we (in a large sense) do, is not looking at Quark or 
> any other software offering, but listening carefully to people using 
> this kind of software. This stands for the number 1 strength of FLOSS.
>>Unfortunately, matching InDesign's features and reliability won't be 
>>enough to compete with Adobe's offerings. GIMP and Inkscape are 
>>marching at an impressive pace, but when it comes to printing, they 
>>are useless without scribus and/or Photoshop and Acrobat.
> Considering the trio who rules (still) the graphic art industry, 
> Illustrator-Photoshop-Quark, when it comes to printing, lots of us 
> never ever relied on anything else than Quark. Period. FLOSS has 
> Scribus (and its PDFs) and for the many jobs I processed through my 
> Harlequin RIP (and the Xerox-CREO duo that brings us digital 
> printing), we never ever had *a single* printing problem.... so far! 
> I think this is robust, reliable and... competitive.
>>As much as I admire the progress of FOSS, there are still lots of 
>>pieces to add to a seamless Open Source publishing workflow (think 
>>about job tickets, software like pitstop etc.)
> Well, there is lots more to workflow than job tickects and pitstop: 
> just handling the right files to the right people in the right time 
> is the big part of a successful workflow. Prepress workflow is mostly 
> jammed by people who don't have a clue of what they're doing rather 
> than software itself. Used with proper care, FLOSS can do a lot.
>>Back to parent: QuarkXPress is dead in the water. For those who have 
>>suffered from Quark in the past (a lot of people), this might be 
>>final justice, but after Adobe buying out Macromedia, the publishing 
>>community has to deal with a new monopoly.
> My god! This is a bit strong a statement. Anyway... not going to 
> argue much on this. One thing I want to point out, though, is about 
> monopoly. This is certainly one thing we don't need and we all suffer 
> from. Hopefully, FLOSS is there to stay, and to challenge the 
> monopolies.
> That said, I know as a sure thing there is a very long way ahead to 
> make a better Scribus. But it is clear in my mind, as I said, the 
> number 1 strength of FLOSS is not talking. It's listening, and making 
> it happen.
>  From the bottom of my heart! No hard feelings! :)
> Don't want to sound rude, hey!
> ;)
> Louis
>>My apologies for the rant.

Hi Louis,

You might be astonished, but I agree with you on most points. Listening 
to the users is what the scribus team does in a wonderful fashion, and 
it's something Quark hardly ever did (when I wrote about people 
suffering from Quark, I meant the company). With GIMP, I'm not so sure...

Quark, along with Photoshop and Freehand, has been the standard for 
years, but the world is changing. Compare QuarkXPress 6.x to InDesign 2 
or later versions. InDesign beats XPress hands down. Quark's only 
advantage is its large installed base and user habits. Around here, I 
see Prepress folks leaving the sinking XPress ship in large numbers, 
partly because they have been squeezed by Quark (the company) for years, 
partly because InDesign offers more value for money. Now comes Adobe and 
offers Creative Studio Premium with almost everything you need at a 
reasonable price. Of course you can still use XPress, but you will also 
have to buy Illustrator or FreeHand (now owned by Adobe as well), 
Photoshop and Acrobat - which would be much more expensive.

I agree with you that there are a lot of things you can do with FOSS 
already, scribus being the best example. I use it almost every day, and 
I only encountered one problem, but the problem wasn't the scribus PDF, 
but a RIP from the stone age at the printer. The reliability of scribus 
*is* a competitve feature. It's also true that a good portion of a 
prepress workflow is a social process, as you wrote. But with CS, Adobe 
delivers the software part of the workflow. As Frank wrote in another 
reply, time is an important factor. With FOSS solutions, you still have 
to switch to Windoze or MacOS at some point in the process (think about 
CMYK-TIFs, RIP etc.).

My post was no criticism of scribus at all. The work done by wizards 
like Franz and Craig is fantastic. I only wish other projects were as 
effective as the scribus team. And, yes, there are still some gaps to 
fill with respect to functionality and usability. This will change over 
time, I'm sure. But the reason for my original posting was the ongoing 
comparison between QuarkXPress and scribus. My intention was to point at 
Adobe's products and its policy (bundling, building a monopoly). Adobe's 
CS sets the benchmark, and the FOSS community will have to compete with 
it rather than XPress. OTOH, scribus sets the benchmark for 
responsiveness, so that's probably the way to success. That's what you 
described in your response, and I fully agree with you :-)



More information about the scribus mailing list