Dia News Summary February 2004

Lars, Cyrille, Hans, and Dia developers and users

I'm writing this message as a first attempt to regularly summarize some of
what has being going on with Dia for the past week/month or perhaps
longer.  I intend to summarize some of the recent dicussions on the
mailing list and try to look at some of the thing that have been mentioned
in the Changelog but present them in a slightly more reader friendly
format and try to highlight all the things that Dia is good at.  I wont
summarize everything and please bear with me at first until I get
over my own bias and get the hang of writing about of what people are
generally interested in.

If I can get in the habit of doing this regularly I will start posting it
to places like GnomeDesktop.org and try and generate a bit more awareness
of how great Dia is.  There are of course plenty of other more useful
things I could and probably should be doing for Dia (like updating the FAQ
or user manual) but I want to write more regularly and see if it is
something I can be good at.

* Table of Contents

  Dia Users Poll
  Dia used for Book Illustrations
  Dia XML Document Types and DTDs
  Tips and Tricks
  Bug and Enhancement Summary

** Dia Users Poll


Lars Clausen has put up what is hopefully the first of many Polls to help
find out more about what Dia users want.  The first poll is a vote about
'Arrow Length'


** Dia used for Book Illustrations


Gerard Milmeister, co-author of a new book "Comprehensive Mathematics for
Computer Scientists" published by Springer Verlag
http://www.springeronline.com/ kindly told us that he has used Dia to
produce over seventy illustrations for the book.

The quality EPS (Encapsulated Postscript) output and ability to include
Pango fonts in the export helped make this possible.  Also the convenient
arrow head support was particulary needed for the task.

"I created some 70+ illustration, and Dia was the only open-source program
adequate for this task."

It is always nice to hear about success stories like these and other kind
words from another appreciative user

**  Dia XML Document Types and DTDs

Another interested user wants to generate Dia compatible documents
and is seeking a description of the XML format used by Dia

The Document Type Definition for the Dia Diagrams (.dia) is
inlcuded with the Dia source code and available from the CVS Repository.

** Tips and Tricks

Want to Change the Fonts or other properties of mulitple objects at once?
There is a convenient workaround, just Select and group the objects,
change desired properties and then ungroup.
For those who are interested the thread also discusses why this problem
has been difficult to fix and there is a link to the relevant bug report.

Want to select lots of small items that are inside a larger item?
Lars explains how:

** Bug and Enhancement Summary

There are at the time of writing the following reports against Dia
(all data is approximate, and I'm pretty sure it changed while I was
making this report) :

193 NEW

308 Reports in total.
  of which 119 are marked as Enhancements.

Hopefully I can get things a bit more organised and graph this into
something more informative.  If there is some other Bug information that
you think would be more useful then please feel free to make suggestions.

Older news that I worth mentioning again is that a Overview Navigation
widget as seen in the GIMP is now available in Dia for those willing to
grab CVS and give it a try.

Corrections and clarifications welcome.  If you dont think I should try
to do this at all then that too is a fair opinion and I'll take it under


Alan Horkan

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