[Sugar-devel] Print Support proposal (need input) Beta

Benjamin M. Schwartz bmschwar at fas.harvard.edu
Thu Mar 19 14:51:09 EDT 2009

Hash: SHA1

Eben Eliason wrote:
> I have to agree that a print to pdf function could be useful, though,
> especially since it means that every activity can create output that
> can be transferred elsewhere (via email, USB drive, etc.) for
> printing.  This provides a method, albeit indirect, for G1G1 users to
> print from various activities whose file formats are only understood
> by a Sugar activity.

No, it doesn't.  What we are discussing here is building PDF conversion
functionality directly into Glucose.  That means that the PDF renderer
will support a fixed set of common file formats, corresponding to the
output of a few popular Activities.  At the moment, I am not aware of any
Activity that produces printable data in a nonstandard format.  Write
produces Open Document Text.  Record produces JPEG.  Paint produces PNG.
Therefore, these are the formats that the PDF renderer will support.

All of these files can already be opened by the corresponding standard
software on any of the major desktops.  There is no significant gain in
compatibility in regard to printing.

> It also means that there would always be a way to send the artifact of
> some activity to another XO, without having to send the raw file
> (which would require the other XO to have that activity, or another
> which supports the format, installed).

Can you give an example where sending the raw file would be a problem?
I'm not aware of any existing Activity that matches your description.

I'm not saying conversion to PDF is useless. For example, Write's user
interface is not well optimized for reading books, and Read has not yet
gained support for opening ODT (I believe).  Therefore, an ODT->PDF
converter would be a useful bridge.  However, it's certainly not the ideal
solution.  Remember: we are trying to produce an editable world.  Read and
Write should be a single Activity, were it not for technical issues.

- --Ben
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