[okfn-help] Free/open file compression/archiving software?

Rufus Pollock rufus.pollock at okfn.org
Tue Apr 29 13:38:14 BST 2008

On 24/04/08 20:32, Alain Schremmer wrote:
> On Apr 24, 2008, at 7:29 AM, Rufus Pollock wrote:
>> zip is fine and is probably slightly better for cross-platform support 
>> so I'd just stick with that.
> So, essentially and without really knowing what I was doing, I did the 
> right thing. Well, sometimes it is nice to be lucky.
>> PDF is listed (at the top) and svg is also listed further down.
> Actually, I had seen pdf altough forgotten about it but I did miss svg. 
> :-((
>> Latex/Tex would obviously definitely count as open so no problems 
>> there. Intaglio looks to be a mac osx drawing programme. As it looks 
>> to be proprietary I suggest not using its own format but exporting 
>> whatever material you made in it to an open format (png/svg/...).
> Intaglio is certainly proprietary BUT I put the following questions to 
> GNU on March 31, 2005 (answers italicized by me):
>     —Is pdf considered to be "suitable for revising the document 
> straightforwardly with [...] some widely available drawing editor" given 
> that pdf is notoriously difficult to edit.
>     —No.
>     —If not, that is, if the pdf figures are not considered transparent  
> enough, in what format should I convert the Intaglio graphics?
>     —Can Intaglio save svg files?  This would probably be the best 
> option, since many popular programs can edit those.
>     —If so, given that pdf is not really easily editable, I would still 
> like to include, say, the Intaglio proprietary source, converted or not. 
> How then do I protect it?
>     —I think the Intaglio files would be Transparent copies.
> However, while Intaglio graphics would seem tp be acceptable as editable 
> files to Mac users, they would present a problem on other platforms. 
> Eventually, though, Intaglio added the option to save graphics as svg 
> and so the Complete Source includes Intaglio, svg and pdf.

I would say at this point, now that svg is supported, that you could 
just save svg (then there is no need for pdf, intaglio etc). It is 
always best to only store true 'source' files and compile other files 
(e.g. pdf) from them. Obviously if the intaglio format files are the 
true source then you probably need to include them too (though you 
definitely do not want to include the whole of the Intaglio programme -- 
plus that would be illegal as it is copyrighted ...)

>> In terms of compressing them you really just want to compress them 
>> together into a single bundle using 'zip'.
> Indeed, I was still thinking in terms of size economy until, when I put 
> the stuff on the web three months ago, I realized that that wasn't the 
> point any more. Back in the days of the Mac 512, space WAS at a premium 
> and it is still hard to think in Megs for documents. My first hard drive 
> was the 20 Megs and we were all convinced that it would last me a lifetime.

This is an important point. If you are thinking of adding stuff to 
subversion you probably do *not* want to compress the stuff (after all 
space is not at that much of a premium and svn will take care of 
compression internally). However if you are thinking about producing a 
bundle for download you probably do want to zip everything up into a 
single bundle.

> P.S. I included the above excerpt from the GNU's response because I 
> thought it surprising and Intaglio is thus by far the easiest solution, 
> if a bulky one. (But what is a bit more size these days?)

Just to clarify: you are not suggesting actually including the whole of 
Intaglio in the bundle -- which would not be allowed -- but only the 
image files produced by Intaglio?


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