[scribus] Hyphenation/justification settings (was Re: Text layout on Scribus Manual)

avox avox at arcor.de
Fri Jul 24 01:00:30 CEST 2009

Tornóci László-2 wrote:
> I use 1.3.5, the development version for the reason it has much better 
> hyphenation-justification (H&J) than the stable branch. 1.3.5 has 
> optical margins, it allows you to tweak word tracking and glyph 
> extension (found in text properties, advanced settings). For word 
> tracking (=interword spacing) you can set a minimal and a normal width 
> in percentages, for glyph extension (horizontally shrinking/extending 
> glyphs) you can set a minimum and a maximum. There is no way to set a 
> maximum for word tracking, and there is no way to change within-word 
> spacing (letterspacing) at all (correct me if I'm wrong). 
You can change letterspacing manually with the "AV" button.

> H&J is 
> strictly line oriented.
> I think the problem is, DTP experts can't really agree about what 
> methods should be used to get a good typesetting. I think some of the 
> opinions are more like a religious belief than something you can 
> actually prove. Like your quote from Goudy: I don't think anyone has 
> eyes sharp enough to detect 1-3% changes in within-word spacing, and 
> these changes could allow a H&J algorithm to achieve a better solution. 
> By the way, I agree, noticeable within-word spacing is absolutely UGLY, 
> (but large interword spaces are not nice either).
> I don't understand why Scribus allows for glyph extension and not for 
> changing the within-word spacing. The former is a bigger no-no among 
> purists then the latter.
Hm, is it? Letter spacing changes the color of the text whereas glyph 
extension doesnt. Also glyph extension gives the similar transformation
to what you get when you look at the text from an angle.

> There are some convincing examples in James Felici's book: The Complete 
> Manual of Typography showing the same text typeset with different 
> settings of: interword and within-word spacing and glyph extension. 
> Combining small (not noticeable) amounts of all these gives you a really 
> pleasing result.
> It would be very nice to be able to use all these settings in Scribus. 
> The purists could always disable the features they don't like. And a 
> paragraph oriented H&J is also a must. Currently if you reach the max 
> hyphenations allowed at the end of lines, you get ridiculously large 
> interword spacings in the next line.

Paragraph-oriented  H&J is already planned.

> So yes, I agree with John, better H&J is necessary. Now that we have TeX 
> frames, is there a way to link them the way we do text frames? Guess 
> not, but perhaps Scribus could pass linked text frames to TeX after some 
> filtering?

That's also planned. A future version will allow linking of imageframes, so
can be filled with multipage images. I also have some idea for a magical TeX
interface that passes frame information and more to TeX, but I don't know
I'll find time for that.
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