[scribus] WTactis and Scribus struggle

Gregory Pittman gregp_ky at yahoo.com
Wed Jan 12 17:29:13 CET 2011

On 01/12/2011 10:48 AM, Lukasz Jastrzebski wrote:
> This being said, I I'm aware of the fact, how much I ask for. But... could
> you help us?
I think you illustrate the problem with floundering around by yourself 
and consequently becoming very frustrated, and then asking a whole bunch 
of questions, many of which may be based on trying to do things that 
Scribus won't do, or in a way that is inefficient.

> First bunch of problems is related to text styles (I use numbers only to
> make further dicussion easier):
> 1.There seems to be no way to tweak drop cap appearance (size of the
> letter). We need it to be 1,5 lines tall. Not 1 or 2. No way to make it with
> drop caps. This particular size makes us use character style that fixes it.
> But it introduces manual line breaking and tabulation inside text, which is
> cumbersome and non-intuitive, apart from how lame it seems to be.
> Also, fields acceptible for changing character size when having drop cap
> selected are all active, which is confusing of where the error realy sits.
If you check here:


you can see some workarounds to this drop cap issue. Done this way, you 
can make it whatever size you want, and leave your paragraph style alone.

> 2. There seems to be no way to tweak individual paragraph first line
> intendation. Not with modifying styles.
Not sure what you mean here. You can very easily change indentation by 
editing styles. Perhaps just make copies of existing ones, so that you 
have a family of similar styles...

> 3. Blurred shadow under letters would be nice feature to have. Due to lack
> of it we have to use big quantity of bitmap, and some little mess here and
> there as well. Any ideas how to fix that?
Scribus doesn't do blurred shadows natively, and doesn't import svg with 
> Second bunch of issues are related to graphics handling and export:
> 4. SVG support is not compatible with Inkscape. Inkscape is the best SVG
> editor out there. I have encountered many problems with importing gradients
> and contours. Importing two-noded (elliptical) gradient is borked now. Not
> sure with layer effects. There is an article on avoiding part of errors
> related to lack of Scribus contur awareness, which was complicated to do
> with our card template (designed in Inkscape). After sorting those out I
> found there is no way to deal with complex gradients. This results in lack
> of ability to import SVG files directly (in lossless manner), we have to use
> bitmap graphics as an intermediate, lossy stage instead which leads to yet
> another set of errors. Also loss of time to iron out all contour stuff and
> spot the gradient bug was enormous. All just to conclude it was a bad way
> right from the start and loose few evenings.
SVG support is compatible with inkscape, but has limitations. Inkscape 
has been active in creating new SVG features, so Scribus isn't alone in 
not supporting all of them.

> 5. PNG exports with white background. We need transparency, not white as
> expression of nothingness. This results in complete abundance of us using
> this very comfortable PNG export to generate our files for online view/play.
> 6. PNG export does not apply good pixel oversampling before exporting
> bitmap, this results in bad appearance of graphics or extra work to make it
> looking good.

If you "have to" use PNG export in this way, you will be unsuccessful 
with Scribus.

> We chatted about this while ago on Scribus IRC channel. If this is really
> frugal "PNG screenshot feature", please don't call it "PDF export", but
> rather "bitmap preview" or "debuging feature you should not use". All SVG,
> PDF and PNG things are called "exports", which is just misleading.
> If you happen to know a free software printer capable of spitting input into
> one bitmap per page with transparent background, please drop me a line as
> well, as this may be a solution. And no, PDFCreator is not the solution,
> sadly.

This just seems like a rant to me.

> 7. This is really serious bug for us. Blur bitmap filter is not working in
> PDF. Bitmaps remain crispy. This results in a) need of preparing each file
> that needs blured shadow once again before typesetting, so around 100 files
> to correct individually now plus 200 more before finishing the game, or b)
> having cards unprintable, which is no-go for us (and along with PNG export
> problems makes Scribus useless).

This suggests that you should use an external editor AFAICT.


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