ImageMagick convert -- a required bundle to handle EPS on Windows and OSX?

Christian Lohmaier lohmaier at
Wed Apr 30 05:51:52 PDT 2014

Hi Stuart, *,

On Tue, Apr 29, 2014 at 3:38 PM, V Stuart Foote <VStuart.Foote at> wrote:
> Not sure I would characterize EPS as simply a niche use.
> EPS, still much more so than SVG, is the preferred format for preparation of
> vector based technical images, graphs and charts for academic and scientific
> publication.

So this is perfect example of niche use.
I dare to say that it is not for the merits of eps format, but rather
due to the fact that this is one of the few/only formats that
latex/TeX can digest without any trouble.

(And for actual publication you supply the text and the graphics
separately anyway, as the layouting will be done by the magazine)

> When you consider that  Windows continues to hold  the high
> percentage of user seats it does---poor support for EPS makes LibreOffice a
> poor choice for such work, compounded further by continued lack of support
> of TeX based renderings that alienates an entire class of academic users.

If students are told to use TeX, they don't have a choice but to use
TeX anyway. Even if LO supported it, you'd still need to hand in your
paper created using TeX. And again: this is niche in my eyes.

And even more so as you also correctly stated:
a) on one hand the conversions using those are inferior to the
conversion using dedicated tools
b) for most users it will only be a bitmap representation, not a vector format.

The user is much better off converting EPS to a more suitable format
prior to using it with LibreOffice.

> Notification that the three EPS helper programs are not bundled with
> LibreOffice and that some mix of them is required, with some clear guidance
> as to best practices seems reasonable until such time as native EPS handling
> can be implemented.

I don't think so. LibreOffice doesn't understand EPS. It cannot embed
it as EPS as is in PDF (you need to print to real postscript, that's
the only part where the eps is actually used).
In all other cases a bitmap representation is used (as ~nobody will
have ps2edit installed). And it is a convenience that LibreOffice
hooks into those external programs to create one if there is none
embedded in the EPS.


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