Re: A few questions

From: Alan Horkan (
Date: Sun Aug 31 2003 - 13:32:43 EDT

  • Next message: Julien Olivier: "Re: A few questions"

    On Sun, 31 Aug 2003, Julien Olivier wrote:

    > Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2003 12:02:01 +0100
    > From: Julien Olivier <>
    > To:
    > Subject: A few questions
    > Hi
    > I've just tried Abiword 1.99.3 and I have a few questions about it:
    > - I have tried to open a few DOC files sent to me by my boss and, while
    > most of them were almost perfectly converted, those containing diagrams
    > (I guess there is a drawing tool in MS Word) didn't work: the diagrams
    > didn't appear at all.

    There is an optional Draw component for MSWord amongst other things.

    If you had a full version of Abiword with WMF support you might get a
    reasonably representation of those diagrams, not sure though.

    > - Still related to the former question, is there or will there be a
    > drawing tool in Abiword ? I mean something to draw basic geometrical
    > shapes and arrows.

    Abiword allows you to insert images and insert SVGs for that purpose,
    although unfortunately the SVGs are not preserved for later edits (they
    are converted into flat graphics).

    I dont think there is a bug report asking for more functionality in this
    area but I cant be sure.

    > - I tried to insert a clipart and found that you include quite a few
    > ones in Abiword. But what surprised me was that, among the cliparts,
    > were a lot of icons. Do you really think it's worth mixing cliparts with
    > icons ? Who really wants to insert icons in his documents ?

    If you can find, make or provide better clipart for inclusion it would be
    very much appreciated.

    > - I think another important feature misses: you can't create a new
    > document based on a template. For example, when I want to write a
    > resume, I like to start from a template because it's easier to focus on
    > the content and not on the form. Something like a collection of wizards
    > to create basic documents would be great.

    You might be able to put together something using the current tempaltes
    and Fields. If you wanted to generate more complex documents you would
    have to look at the Mail Merge/database functionality.
    I dont think there are any current plans to add document generation
    Wizards or Assistants [1]

    > - I noticed that there is no function to create a table of contents
    > automatically. Are there any plans for that in the future ? I think
    > that's a must-have for any serious word processor. Well, at least I use
    > it very much :)

    It is definately planned, I cant say how soon, and I definately
    recall there is a bug report in Bugzilla

    > - Finally, I've jus read that Koffice is about to switch to
    >'s file format by default for KDE4. Don't you think it
    > would be possible for Abiword too ? I think it's important to have 1
    > standard file format for all the great open source office applications
    > so that it's easier to convince commercial office suits o support this
    > format.

    This is a more complicated question than you realise. Anything is
    possible :) and standards are important.

    I am really glad I posted this earlier in the week to the developer
    mailing list

    Help from developers to improve our OpenOffice support would be
    appreciated. Users who really want better openoffice support might
    consider clubbing together and sponsoring a developer.

    Abiword has excellent RTF support which provides excellent compatibility
    with most other Word Processor, which is what I always use.

    > Well, time for the congratulations: Abiword is really a brilliant word
    > processor. Thanks everybody for working on it and making my life better

    Thanks developers, I dont think I say it often enough myself.


    Alan Horkan

    [1] Assistant is the correct Gnome terminology for what Windows refers to
    as Wizards, OpenOffice refers to as AutoPilot, and the developers keep
    calling Druids (which I believe is what the API still calls them).

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