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Scribus => Beginner Talk => Topic started by: rutbug on October 25, 2011, 04:24:04 pm

Title: PageMaker
Post by: rutbug on October 25, 2011, 04:24:04 pm
I have learned that PageMaker's PMD files are proprietary and hard to figure, not to mention patented and thus legal issues arise.
Nevertheless, I will protect my investment.
Therefore I am writing an exporter to render an exhaustive XML file that will contain everything including the kitchen sink in my document.
I own PM7 and it has Scripting capabilities ... AND a fully documented PDF file for the script commands.
PM7 also has DDE server capabilitlities (for Windows) and can also communicate using AppleEvents (Mac) (of which I am unfamiliar)
I need only open PM7 and run my client Java app (still under development) to obtain a very large XML (my own design)
The only thing else I need is exhaustive details on Scribus' format so I will be able to implement a properly encoded Scribus document.
Since DDE doesn't care about the proprietary PMD binary format, neither do I, so I will extract out of my pubs all things possible and render the XML.
No XML DTD/schema exists as of yet, but I may create one.
Title: Re: PageMaker
Post by: Wena on October 26, 2011, 08:04:05 pm
rutbug, what has PageMaker to do with Sribus, specially the up and coming v1.5 which I am using?

But when it is comes out it will be, as fare as I know every bit as good if not better.

Title: Re: PageMaker
Post by: rutbug on October 27, 2011, 04:04:31 pm
Wena, for starters both are DTPs. For those who used (or is still using) PageMaker and wish to move to other (open source) environments, exporting years of investments from a now unsupported context to something new and unproprietary has its appeal. Many have clammored about wanting to open PM files in Scribus; since converting the patented PM file has legal issues surrounding it, exporting from within PM using its own scripting capabilities and DDE or Apple Events is the only practical means (unless one is willing to spend the time to port many,  many pub files manually -- I'm not).
Title: Re: PageMaker
Post by: Wena on October 27, 2011, 07:43:06 pm
Have asked the development team if they could make it possible to import the Page Maker files into the new v 1.5.

I think we could do with a wider import system for text, e.g I have been attempting to import a PDF for example, I could not do so.


Title: Re: PageMaker
Post by: Nermander on October 28, 2011, 09:57:15 am
As been said before, the development team can make nothing to import PM files because the PM file format is proprietary.

What rutbug is working on is a workaround, opening the PM file in PageMaker and exporting to a format that can be converted to a Scribus document. It will allow users of PageMaker to move their work into Scribus. They will however need to have a working version of PageMaker installed.
Title: Re: PageMaker
Post by: a.l.e on October 28, 2011, 12:31:49 pm
hi rutbug,

neat project!

if you only use "legal" means to achieve the transition to scribus i think that the team will welcome it!

and if you are releasing your code as free software, you will get my help to achieve your goal...

what i can tell you for now is: the .SLA format is probably not yet 100% clean XML... and is not properly documented, either. but your project could be the trigger for some progress on those topics!

Title: Re: PageMaker
Post by: rutbug on November 22, 2011, 04:34:50 pm
The export project is proceeding very well -- perhaps near completion. I have a few more graphic variants to handle, but my test pub produces an XML output file and a folder with the embedded graphics. Command line options can direct both unlinked (to relink else export) and linked graphics (to ref or copy). Also, I've abandoned the DTD in favor of an XML schema (complete so far).

Remember that this is only phase 1 of 2. Phase 2 will concentrate on converting the XML to Scribus format (unless the Scribus dev team wishes to handle my XML directly. 

Currently the root tag is PM7WIN. I have stubs for the Mac flavor coded, including some unique attributes, but don't have the hardware to complete this variant.
Title: Re: PageMaker
Post by: rutbug on January 26, 2012, 04:27:57 pm
I am now testing my export code on my actual PM documents. A few quirks have surfaced (such as special characters) and are being resolved. OLE items are on the clipboard as a MS compound document (an open specification -- see aafcontainerspec-v1.0.1.pdf and btw, PM files are also MS compound documents.
Title: Re: PageMaker
Post by: clueless on April 30, 2013, 04:51:47 pm
Altho much of the terms used here are well over my head, if I understand the gist of it, there's no way to simply open old PM docs in Scribus. 

The as-of-yet unfinished project/add-ons would require having PM installed on the same Mac as Scribus, some sort of "export" & "import" coordination...?

I was trying to get away from paying big bucks for a new or newer version of PageMaker/InDesign, as I upgrade from a G4 Mac that can open PM5 in "Classic" to a 2yr old iMac with Mtn Lion.  I was told Scribus would let me open PM files, tweak & print them.  Perhaps I'm stuck with either farming out my once-a-year minor use of PM/ID, or scrounging up the money to get a copy of that one app?