Scribus adds image alignment script, refines PDF export options

Scribus

Open-source, cross-platform desktop publishing package Scribus 1.4.4 has been released. Despite the seemingly minor version number, it includes a number of significant changes.

The new build -- also available in portable form -- adds support for exporting documents in the PDF/X-1a format. It also improves image handling, introduces a new image-alignment script and features a number of stability improvements.

Support for PDF/X-1a means users can now export Scribus documents as PDF files with all fonts embedded and CMYK or spot-colored images. Version 1.4.4 also updates its Barcode plug-in to reflect the latest changes made to the underlying Barcode Writer in Pure PostScript (BWIPP).

The new release also rewrites -- and improves -- the Autoquote script, which is used to convert straight quotes in a text frame to correct quotation marks. The script, introduced in version 1.3.9, now provides more options to end users and adds thin spaces to French texts where appropriate.

A new script has also been added that allows users to quickly and easily align images in frames -- the feature is available via the Scripts > Scribus Scripts menu. Page borders can now also be used as guides, allowing users to snap items to borders.

Scribus 1.4.4 also comes with the promise of improved handling of transparencies in Photoshop-generated TIFF files, while Mac users regain the ability to export documents in various bitmap formats.

Version 1.4.4 also adds full support for the OpenICC Directory Proposal, and also integrates the CMYK color palette created by the Newspaper Association of America (NAA) for newspaper advertisements. This is accompanied by a new color palette aimed at professional geographers.

The app also comes with the promise of various tweaks, bug fixes and improvements: adjustments have been made for Windows 8, while issues with the user interface and canvas display have now been resolved. Another bug with the spellchecker -- which resulted in a crash -- has also been fixed.

The update is rounded off with a number of updates and improvements to its documentation and translations.

Scribus 1.4.4 is available now as a free, open-source download for Windows, Mac and Linux. Windows users can also download and run Scribus Portable 1.4.4.

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