[Scribus] Correct tool for 500-page technical book

Louis Desjardins louis_desjardins
Wed May 24 19:14:20 CEST 2006

D. R. Evans a ?crit :
> I am about to start work on a technical book that will be ~500 pages.
> Last time I did this, I was forced to use Word. This is not an
> experiance that I want to repeat. So I am trying to figure out what
> would be the best tool to use this time. I am hoping that the final
> product will simply need to be PDF, so that opens the possibility of
> using any one of several tools. Scribus seems to be one of these
> possible tools. It is also the only one with which I have zero
> experience, so I don't know how to evaluate realistically how viable
> it would be to use Scribus for this.
> My biggest concern (apart from spending the time to use Scribus
> properly, but I really don't mind doing that) is the index. I haven't
> seen anything that indicates that Scribus knows how to create indices.
> The TOC is also a bit of a concern, and I would like some input on
> whether I should be worried about that. Although I haven't seen
> anything about cross-references, I assume that Scribus must have some
> way to handle headings and cross-references fairly auto-magically.
> The other possible contenders apart from Scribus are:
>   Word/OOo -- I really don't want to use these. My experience is that
> OOo almost certainly isn't up to this kind of task. Word is, but it's
> sooo painful.
>   plain TeX -- probably the most likely, although tables and Figures
> are a bit painful.
>   LaTeX -- better than TeX for tables/Figures, but probably not
> sufficiently flexible -- or, at least, not as easily customised as TeX
> Anyway, would I be stupid not to try to use Scribus? Or stupid to try to use it?

Scribus can handle large project but there are things to keep in mind.
1. Handling large amount of text is going to be very challenging, thus 
it is important to decide in the very early stage if your project can be 
done in smaller files that can be gathered together in the end.
2. Scribus is a DTP application and very well suited for text and 
graphic together. You might find a text-only project, including TOC and 
index to be too far away from the primary strengths of Scribus.
3. Other people on this list will come up with their own valuable 
experience, including the devels. In the end, if you find you want to 
use another application, please consider Scribus for the cover, spine 
and back-cover of your book.
4. Before deciding, say between Tex and Scribus, I would suggest you 
give Scribus a try with one chapter. You will know in a short while 
wether this is possible or not, in your view. 50 pages is a fair amount 
of pages and will give the taste of the rest of your project.



>   Doc Evans
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> Scribus at nashi.altmuehlnet.de
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Louis Desjardins
Mardigrafe inc.
T 514 934 1353
F 514 934 3698

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