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Re: OpenOfficeWriter: Switch between 1 and 2 columns

On Tue, 2008-11-11 at 17:58 -0500, Dave Feustel wrote:
> On Tue, Nov 11, 2008 at 05:47:38PM -0430, Patrick O'Callaghan wrote:
> > On Tue, 2008-11-11 at 16:17 -0500, Dave Feustel wrote:
> > > I had found this, but I am still confused about the differences
> > > between section and frames and how the frames are linked together.
> > > I'm trying to convert the mutt reference manual to a more convenient
> > > printed form since my current hardcopy of that manual is a PITA to
> > > work with.
> > 
> > A section is notionally part of the meaningful structure of the
> > document, e.g. a table of contents, an index etc. A frame is an
> > arbitrary box of text that you can place anywhere you like. It's more
> > of a desktop publishing concept than a text composition concept. You
> > can of course use frames to get multiple columns, but it's more work
> > to do it that way, e.g. AFAIK frames can't go over page boundaries.
> I have figured out how to use sections to put text into 2-column format.
> Each section is uniquely (and sequentially) named. What I would like is
> a template that I can apply to each block of text to be converted.
> Then if I modify the template, all the text gets the changes.
> I haven't yet figured out whether OO writer 2.4 (or 3.0) has that kind
> of template. A good intro to OO would help me ascend the learning curve.

It's called a style. What you are looking for is exactly what styles are
for. You define the style (think of it as a template if you like) and
apply it to the appropriate text. If you later change the style,
everything gets updated automatically.

> > Having said all that, if you're going to invest the time and effort it
> > might be more useful to do it in Docbook rather than OO. That way you
> > could have both online and printed versions from the same source. 
> I have no knowledge of Docbook, but if I knew what the Docbook software tools 
> were, I could try it out (this conversion effort is an OO writer learning
> exercise. I could do Docbook instead.)

There's a bunch of Docbook tools included in Fedora, since it's the
basis for Fedora's documentation. However be aware that they are mostly
batch-based, i.e. you write your doc in some editor (which may or may
not have builtin support for Docbook) and then apply commands to
transform it to the kind of output you want, i.e. it's not a word
processor in itself. See http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/DocsProject,
which includes several tutorials.


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