[scribus] putting lines around table cells

John Jason Jordan johnxj at comcast.net
Tue Aug 11 02:55:47 CEST 2009

On Mon, 10 Aug 2009 15:04:51 -0600
"D. R. Evans" <doc.evans at gmail.com> dijo:

> I've spent about 20 minutes getting nowhere, and...
> 1. the instructions in the manual don't work with 1.3.5 (or, possibly, they
> work fine but my interpretation of what it's telling me to do is different
> from what the author thought he was saying)
> 2. I can't find anything relevant in the wiki (indeed, the entry for
> "Tables" is a complete mystery to me; it doesn't seem to be telling me how
> to do anything at all; it reads like an e-mail from some sort of design
> discussion)
> so, in desperation I am reduced to asking the (seemingly simple) question here:
>   how do I put a thick border around the outside of a table, and thinner
> borders around the cells?

The problem is that Scribus doesn't really have tables, that is, not
tables as you are accustomed to in word processors, spreadsheets, or
some other page layout applications. It's on the roadmap, but it will
be some time before real tables happen in Scribus.

In the meantime, there is a feature that allows you to created a group
of individual text frames. You can specify a lot of things about the
text frames when you create them, but remember that they are really
just a group of text frames. If you can't do it to a regular text
frame, then you can't do it to a "cell" in your Scribus "table." And
(someone correct me if I'm wrong), in Scribus you can change the line
for a frame, but all the lines have to be the same. 

As a workaround, you can get the dimensions of your group of frames
from the properties menu, then create a simple rectangle of the same
size as the entire group. This rectangle can have whatever kind of
sides you want it to have, including a fatter line. Position the
rectangle over your group of frames in the same coordinates, et voilà!

There is another workaround that I have used now and then. Scribus does
a generally good job of importing PostScript vector images. So you can
create a table in OpenOffice.org, select the table and print
"selection" to file, then import the print file. OpenOffice has very
robust table functionality, including the type of thing you are trying
to do. The only problem with this workaround is that the print file
will be a group of vector images. You will find that OOo sometimes
messes up by printing to file more than just the "selection," so you
have to ungroup the image in Scribus and delete the unwanted elements.
More importantly, it will not be a real editable table because the
process of printing to file created an image - all the text will be
converted to paths, for example. Nevertheless, sometimes it is the best
workaround. Just save the OOo file in case you need to edit the table

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