[Scribus] Scribus in the Art Lab

pixelnate pixelnate
Mon Apr 3 19:41:12 CEST 2006

Le Tigre wrote:
> Christoph Sch?fer a ?crit :
>> Am Montag, 3. April 2006 00:52 schrieb Louis Desjardins:
>>> Hi everybody,
>>> There is an article about Scribus posted Wednesday last week on News Forge.
>>>> "I began seriously planning this change last school year, when I
>>>> realized how fully the current feature sets of free software
>>>> programs could satisfy the technical needs of the students in my
>>>> classes. I decided that the time had come to teach our undergraduate
>>>> art students about free software programs such as the GIMP, Scribus,
>>>> and Quanta Plus, instead of proprietary programs such as Photoshop,
>>>> QuarkXpress, and Dreamweaver."
>>> The rest of the article can be read here:
>>> http://business.newsforge.com/business/06/03/09/2238246.shtml?tid=37
>>> Cheers!
>>> Louis
>> Hi Louis,
>> have you also read the comments?
>> ;)
> That kind of stupid comments look a bit like this one: 
> http://forum.framasoft.org/viewtopic.php?p=128073#128073 (in french) - 
> to whom I respond.
> I'm always surprised when people try to compare free softwares with 
> non-free, without thinking that it's absolutely 2 different things.
> By the way, I wrote an article about free softawres in our previous 
> revue, that was in 2002... And in French, of course - and at that time I 
> was not even working on Linux... It's there: 
> http://rdereel.free.fr/volLQ1.html
> Cya
> Raphael
This poster has it exactly correct:

This guy was pushing his open source agenda on the paying students 
taking his class. Unless there is an alternate class where the students 
get to use 'real (working) world' applications, this guy is doing them a 
disservice. I totally agree that open source dtp apps have a place in 
the schools, just not as the only option.

I have been seriously contemplating getting my teaching certification to 
become a technology teacher and doing something like this. But that 
would be in high school. For this to be the only option in a university 
is just plain shortsighted. It is hard enough to find graduating 
students who know anything about printing without any real world 
experience. For them to not know the tools of the trade makes them 
completely unhirable. Sure I could train them from the ground up, but 
why would I do that with so many (even crappy) Photoshop artists out 
there? It is easier to steer someone into better practices than to 
completely train them from the ground up.

There is nothing wrong with teaching students about open source, but the 
fact is that the OSS tools just aren't robust enough to replace the 
established tools. I really wish that weren't the case, but it is. I am 
in the middle of a project making signage for a restaurant here in town, 
and I had fully intended to use all OSS tools, but was unable to 
maintain it. I am now in process of converting the Inkscape files back 
to Illustrator to finish my work. Now I am looking at reinvesting in my 
Mac hardware, and upgrading to CS2. I cannot do my job without, at the 
very least, Photoshop and Illlustrator. Once Scribus v1.4 is released, 
with a slight change in my current workflow, it would possibly work in 
place of Quark or Indesign as long as you do most of the heavy lifting 
in the Illustrator file.

I guess what I am trying to say here is that I am happy to see a lab 
like the one in the article, but I believe he is misguided to think that 
not knowing the industry tools will somehow help the students he 
teaches. While OSS tools are getting better, Adobe and Quark have about 
a decade head start on the likes of Scribus and Inkscape. In the 
professional world, even the Corel studio is viewed as a "mickey mouse" 
suite of tools incapable of real work. The OSS world faces an uphill 
battle in the war against proprietary software on proprietary systems, 
especially in the DTP world. But one thing that Scribus and Inkscape 
have over all of those apps is that they are FREE. That will account for 
much with respect to user adoption, but the tools need more work before 
they replace the current tools of the trade.


More information about the scribus mailing list