[Clipart] Re: OpenOffice SVG Export

Jonadab the Unsightly One jonadab at bright.net
Wed Jun 23 20:14:41 PDT 2004

> Firstly let me say that it is insane not to use good layout and pretty
> printing in most XML particularly SVG which provides SVGZ for those who
> are concerned about file size.  

I don't claim to completely understand why OO.o does this, and I
personally always go into the prefs and change the option so that
it does generate something halfway decent (though I often find
myself changing the indentation as I work with it), but honestly
this only matters for people such as myself who unzip the document
and go mucking about with the XML (e.g., writing Perl scripts to
generate documents automatically, interpolating data at runtime).
Most users don't ever do that, and I daresay that if SVG becomes
anywhere near as commonplace as word processing (or, for that
matter, editing bitmapped graphics), the same will be true for
it.  It's important that the option be there for powerusers to
have the XML be pretty-printed, but it doesn't concern me that
that isn't the default.

Though as I said I don't understand what they think they're
actually *gaining* by not pretty-printing, given that their file
formats are all zip-compressed anyhow, and whitespace compresses
like a beach ball in a trash compactor even under basic Huffman
tree compression.  Still, it's mostly harmless since there's
an option in the prefs to do it the sensible way.

Anyway, my point wasn't about whether it's good or bad for apps
to produce XML this way; my point was that technically that's
still valid XML, and so we should realize the possibility that
an app *might* do it that way.

 > But still if is possible some genius will inevitably do it (the
 > same kind of genius thinks writing code with no  comments whatsoever
 > is a good idea).

That's a little different; program code is pretty much always
maintained by humans (except for a few weird edge cases like makefiles
and lex/yacc output and some experimental AI research); XML is
very often maintained by software.  Yes, I personally would rather
keep it human-readable so that when you have to debug it you can,
but that's a druther.

> OpenOffice.org does not have any SVG import.  

I think we can go ahead with collecting a library of SVG images and
figure that with SVG being an emerging standard getting increasing
amounts of press in the OSS community someone will eventually code
the support for it into OO.o, improve the support in Mozilla, and
so on and so forth.

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