Open Source Publishing – Graphic Design Caravan

Author: Femke

Meaningful Transformations

January 12th, 2012 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Meaningful Transformations

A conversation with Tom Lechner We discovered the work of Tom Lechner at the Libre Graphics Meeting 2010 in Brussels. Tom has traveled from Portland, US to present Laidout, an amazing tool that he made to produce his own comic books and also to work on three dimensional mathematical objects. His software interests us for […]

In preparation: Research meeting Co-position

January 2nd, 2012 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on In preparation: Research meeting Co-position

Over at the Libre Graphics Research Unit we are preparing a second ‘Research Meeting’ that will take place in Brussels from 22 to 25 February 2012. Developers, designers and theoreticians from all over Europe will gather to imagine future Libre Graphics tools together. The theme for this particular edition is Co-position, and we’ll speculate about […]

Just ask and that will be that

August 19th, 2011 · · Comments Off on Just ask and that will be that

A conversation with Asheesh Laroia Our conversation took place at the last day of the Libre Graphics Meeting 2011 in Montreal, a day after the panel ‘How to keep and make productive libre graphics projects?‘. Asheesh had responded rather sharply to someone in the audience who remarked that only a very small number of women […]


June 21st, 2011 · · 1 Comment

“I think it is impossible to copyright empty space” (Pierre H quotes Pierre M) We received different responses to our open letter to Monotype that we posted here and on Typophile. Actually, we did get a reply from MonoType’s lawyer, acknowledging our letter, and asking us to identify ourselves as a legal body. We responded […]

LGM 2011 remix

May 18th, 2011 · Tags: · 2 Comments

It is difficult to believe that Libre Graphics Meeting 2011 is already over. We spent 9 intense days in Montreal to work, talk, meet, present, cook, interview, listen and cross the city by bike. The meeting provoked many discussions about the future of Libre Graphics so we decided to write this report in the form […]


April 29th, 2011 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Spoon

“Go into the kitchen and open the first drawer you come to and the odds are you’ll find the wooden spoon that is used to stir soups and sauces. If this spoon is of a certain age you will see it no longer has its original shape. It has changed, as if a piece had […]

Bauhaus meets F/LOSS

April 12th, 2011 · Tags: · · · 2 Comments

Taking it’s inspiration from the Bauhaus Vorkurs1, Xtine Burrough and Michael Mandiberg wrote Digital Foundations2, a textbook for teaching software to designers and artists. Their idea was to not just talk about which button to click, but to connect technical training to color theory and composition. After publisher New Riders had been convinced to apply […]


February 6th, 2011 · Tags: · · 3 Comments

Gaffer-tape galore at the ULB-campus again, it is that time of year. As always it takes a deep breath before I push the battered swing doors of the main location and dive under in the fluorescent-lit hallways filled with thousands of developers. The yearly Free and Open source Software Developers’ European Meeting gathers participants to […]

Hit any key to exit

January 31st, 2011 · Tags: · · · · 3 Comments

Finally… How to choose and install four three new distributions Since announcing that it was time for a new adventure, colleagues and friends have advised me what to install and why (see notes below). In the last few weeks I tried to follow up on their tips and I have tried out many distributions. I […]

Territorial practice

December 9th, 2010 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Territorial practice

It’s hard to believe that we are back for more than three weeks from Tel Aviv, where we participated in Open Code Versus Military Culture? Aspects in Israel Digital Culture. It feels both close and very far away. Open Code Versus Military Culture? was initiated by digital artist Tsila Hassine, asking pertinent questions about the […]

Stop competing, Start collaborating

November 3rd, 2010 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Stop competing, Start collaborating

Excellent post by Troy Sobotka explaining why designers should collaborate with Free Software projects and stop responding to contests: “We need a round table interaction where literature, art, design, philosophy, psychology, and sociology can be engaged. We need a cross pollination of creative fields and studies. We need to have developer minds and creative minds […]

Time for a new adventure

November 2nd, 2010 · Tags: · · · · 9 Comments

Dear Ubuntu, A few weeks ago I needed to re-install my computer. Using the convenient Startup Disk Creator, I prepared a USB-stick with a fresh version of Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx, rebooted the computer and clicked ‘install’. While the Ubuntu slide-show took my mind off the wait and the automatized installation process was taking place, […]

a poetic and political necessity

October 29th, 2010 · Tags: · · · · · 1 Comment

Next week another delegation of OSP travels to Tel Aviv to present at the conference Open Code Versus Military Culture? Aspects in Israel Digital Culture organised by the Shenkar College for Engineering and Design. Following the talk, there will be a worksession at the Israeli Center for Digital Art. From the conference description: “The interest […]

Impossible choice

October 10th, 2010 · Tags: · · · 1 Comment

Packt-publishing, big on books about Open Source, now wants us to ‘Vote for our favorite Open Source Graphics Software to win‘. It is a clever campaign I guess: data about popular applications should be useful in deciding what books will sell. Packt gives away one proprietary e-reader to a random voter and I only hope […]

Listen to F/LOSS

September 16th, 2010 · Tags: · · · · Comments Off on Listen to F/LOSS

At FLOSS-weekly you can find a collection of 130+ longer interviews with Free Software developers, including some involved in our favourite projects: #11: Python (Guido van Rossum: “If you give the same task to different programmers, they’ll come up with different solutions. When programmer B at some point has to maintain the code of programmer […]

Coming to terms

August 5th, 2010 · Tags: · 4 Comments

“If everything is both neutral and imbued with values at the same time, how can we separate instrumentality from ideology? This is essentially what I take the distinction between Free and Open to be about. Free is an ideological standpoint, the idea that users of software should have the right to look under the hood, […]


July 23rd, 2010 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on GML

Yesterday Constant met with Evan Roth to discuss gestures and standards, confessions and F/LOSS, archiving and collaboration. More soon.

One thing leads to another

July 11th, 2010 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on One thing leads to another

Following a trackback, Alexandre discovered the work of Lafkon studio a few days ago. Than, through Antonio Roberts’ comment on this same post, I find out about his work with animated fontfiles. Antonio writes: “Font files are files that attribute a style to the otherwise plain text that we see on screen. The computer treats […]

Hello I’m NANCY ♥

March 28th, 2010 · Tags: · · · · · Comments Off on Hello I’m NANCY ♥

3 days, 327 kilometers, 6 liters of Cube Cola Libre and 54 commits later … Please meet NANCY (a new OSP-software project), download the Dingbat Liberation font (DLFo) and much more at: http://ospublish.constantvzw.org/nancy Re-thinking Miscellaneous Symbols: Flêche grasse à pointe arondie vers la droite?

Collaborative Futures

February 1st, 2010 · Tags: · · · · Comments Off on Collaborative Futures

“Collaboration can be so strong it forces hard boundaries. The boundaries can intentionally or unintentionally exclude the possibility to extend the collaboration. Potentially conflict can also occur at these borders” For this years’ Transmediale Festival, the F/LOSS Manuals project took up the challenge to write, edit and publish a collaborative publication in 5 days while […]

Tools for conviviality

January 28th, 2010 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Tools for conviviality

In the train back from Stuttgart, I read Tools for Conviviality, a pamphlet by social philosopher Ivan Ilich (1973). A ‘convivial society’, he argues, is a society in which everyone can act autonomously, and this can be achieved through the design and use of ‘convivial tools’: People feel joy, as opposed to mere pleasure, to […]

A postcard from Amsterdam

November 13th, 2009 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on A postcard from Amsterdam

Alessandro Ludivico proudly presents the latest issue of Neural with OSP-designed ad for By Data We Mean At a conference in Amsterdam, the Ippolita collective proposes us to build (and use?) convivial tools, a method for users that ‘neither want to rule nor to be ruled by the Society of the Query’: Detect and locate […]

cœur + œuf

November 11th, 2009 · Tags: · · · 3 Comments

Yi and Femke consider cooking heartless vegan food from now on We’re correcting the second edition of the Puerto Cookbook (first edition sold out!) and stumble over a trivial but frustrating small bug in Scribus. Maybe too long to explain here (you’re welcome to read our bug report), but it means a lot of scrolling […]

The transformer

October 9th, 2009 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on The transformer

The transformer (Marie Neurath) at work Today a long awaited booklet arrived in the post: The transformer, principles of making Isotype charts written by Robin Kinross & Marie Neurath. It is inspiring in its modest but precise description of unorthodox working methods developed by philosopher, sociologist, and economist Otto Neurath and his associates. To produce […]

Thank You PoDoFo

October 2nd, 2009 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Thank You PoDoFo

When budget is limited and time is short: PoDoFo tiling + wallpaper glue + NotCourierSans to the rescue! Clementine mounts the Constant Verlag colophon for its launch last night in 17 Rue de la Senne

Spinning SVG

September 18th, 2009 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Spinning SVG

Can’t help but re-blog: friend & neighbour Michael Murtaugh is experimenting with SVG animation, using svgweb to make this cat spin 🙂 http://automatist.org/blog/?p=139

We will get to know the machine and we will understand

August 26th, 2009 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on We will get to know the machine and we will understand

Before starting a fresh new OSP-season, first a post long due: This conversation with Juliane de Moerlooze was recorded March 2009 in the context of Female Icons, a project by De Geuzen but I think OSP-readers might like to read it as well? “when you hear people talk about women having more sense for the […]

Legal Soup

August 18th, 2009 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Legal Soup

1. Unlimited Use License Judging from the mysql errors flying around, the Open Records Generator software developed by David Reinfurt, is not actively maintained at the moment. Still, this GPL licensed software presents an interesting mix of buyers and users: “The buyer receives full rights to modify and reuse the software for future applications” (found […]

Pelgrimage to Pragma

June 29th, 2009 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Pelgrimage to Pragma

Designing with TeX: episode IV Today we drove up North to the headquarters of Pragma in Hasselt (NL), La Place from where ConTeXt, a document markup language and document preparation system based on TeX, is being developed. The goal of the journey was to resolve some of the issues we encounter while designing a multi […]

Opening the blackbox of printing

June 27th, 2009 · Tags: · · · 1 Comment

When we began to think about how to establish a more rich and warm collaboration with printers after the cold alerts we experienced during OSP production, Georges Charlier’s appetite for research and openness to exotic solutions reappeared in Pierre’s mind. And since we are preparing some new books, it was time for an update on […]

Cookbook Launch

June 22nd, 2009 · Tags: · · · · 1 Comment

22 June, 16:00 @ Puerto, Varkensmarkt 23, Brussels Join us this afternoon for the long awaited festive launch of the Puerto Livre de Cuisine Kookboek: 70 delicious recipes, written, translated (Dutch and French) and illustrated in collaboration with the inhabitants of Puerto. Puerto is an organisation working from the center of Brussels, where they generously […]

Libre Fonts

June 7th, 2009 · Tags: · · · 3 Comments

The Open Font Library is preparing a brand new site (an idea of what’s in store: http://openfontlibrary.org/wiki) and this sparked off an interesting discussion about terminology. How to name fonts that are made available on the OFL site?

A Postcard from Stuttgart

May 30th, 2009 · Tags: · · Comments Off on A Postcard from Stuttgart

I’m in Stuttgart for a week to teach a workshop. In the school library, I read Eye Magazine.

Conversion is costly

May 20th, 2009 · Tags: · · · · 1 Comment

Notes from print/pixel Last week, OSP attended the print/pixel conference in Rotterdam, a two day event gathering publishers, designers, marketeers and document engineers to look at the ever shifting relation between digital and paper publishing.1 For an integral report, see blog-posts by Jouke Kleerebezem and Arie Altena here: http://blog.wdka.nl/communication-in-a-digital-age. Our notes are fragmentary. The organisers […]


May 19th, 2009 · Tags: · Comments Off on seamful

“Open Source doesn’t mean free access, nor open space or open air; it presumes a seamful approach to design as a response to the increasing reliance on technology and its accessibility” http://jaromil.dyne.org/journal/research_2009.html…

New work on Fonts at W3C

May 13th, 2009 · Tags: · · · · Comments Off on New work on Fonts at W3C

Chris Lilley writes: “W3C is collecting ideas for work related to downloadable fonts on the Web. This email summarizes the current situation, and asks for feedback on a draft charter for a future W3C Font working group or interest group. Please send feedback on the charter to the publicly archived mailing list www-style@w3.org.” Read his […]

Even when you are done, you are not done

April 17th, 2009 · Tags: · · · · 2 Comments

A conversation with Chris Lilley Almost a year ago at the Libre Graphics Meeting 2008, OSP sat down with Chris Lilley on a small patch of grass in front of the Technical University in Wroclaw, Poland. Warmed up by the early May sun, we talked about the way standards are made, how ‘specs’ influence the […]

Jeffrey Zeldman on Open Source and the web

April 16th, 2009 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Jeffrey Zeldman on Open Source and the web

Under the ambitious title ‘Jeffrey Zeldman Discusses the Future of Open Source‘ (filed under: ‘The Internet’), the CSS guru compares the use of Open Source Content Management Systems to what webstandards did for the web. Looking forward to hear more… and will he mention SVG? Excerpt from a longer interview, soon available here too: http://bigthink.com/ideas/jeff-zeldman-discusses-the-future-of-open-source […]

Hic Sunt Leones

March 20th, 2009 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Hic Sunt Leones

… and for the same Cinema du Réel festival, OSP worked with Michael Murtaugh on HIC SUNT LEONES, a collective slideshow of on-line visual contributions gathered during the festival.

The exception that proves the rule

March 18th, 2009 · Tags: · · · 2 Comments

Felix Kubin writes: “As an antidote to globalisation, Ich Bin suggest local megalomania: Mulhouse for capital! ‘Avec le Gewuerz et le Schnaps.’ The record was designed by the talented Monsieur Harrisson, a French refugee now residing in Brussels (…)” So, OSP makes an exception for Harissons’ *last ever* design in proprietary software: we’re proud to […]


March 14th, 2009 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on \definetypeface

Designing with TeX: episode III Thanks to the super active ConTeXt mailinglist, we are finally able to load our own fonts! And of course, once we know how, we are almost disappointed that it is so easy to do. if you compile this file: \definetypeface[Libertinage][rm][Xserif][Libertinage] \setupbodyfont[Libertinage, 24pt] \starttext \input knuth \stoptext with this command: texexec […]

Compatible dates

March 10th, 2009 · · 1 Comment

Monday 24 March 2009 Ada Lovelace Day “I will publish a blog post on Tuesday 24th March about a woman in technology whom I admire but only if 1,000 other people will do the same.” http://www.promessotheque.com/AdaLovelaceDay Friday 27 March 2009 Thank A Developer Day “The general idea is to appreciate the creators behind your favorite […]

Lions and tulips

February 18th, 2009 · Tags: · · · · · 2 Comments

Designing with TeX: episode II “Users only need to learn a few easy-to-understand commands that specify the logical structure of a document“. If only we had sooner understood that user here is writer, not designer, we might have given up earlier. The Not So Short Introduction to LaTeX2 goes on to explain: “They almost never […]

Call for participation: Useless Tools

February 12th, 2009 · Tags: · · · · · Comments Off on Call for participation: Useless Tools

(Call forwarded from Isabelle Massu) + + + + + + + + + + + + Museums narrate the history of man’s evolution through the display of tools (silex, knife, jar, etc.). In contrast, we are looking for useless tools. This call will result in a vitrine of objects titled ‘Object Inutile’ to be […]

Feature or bug?

February 4th, 2009 · Tags: · · · · · 3 Comments

The FLOSS+Art book is finally rolling off the print-on-demand press and in the spirit of the kinds of practices described in the book, GOTO10 distributes our ‘source files’ as a bittorrent:1 Rather than just providing a “free” PDF, FLOSS+Art.v1.1.eBook-GOTO10 is also available and contains all the Fonts, Images, PDF and Scribus source files that were […]

Unimaginable tools

January 23rd, 2009 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Unimaginable tools

“Only rarely, if indeed ever, are a tool and an altogether original job it is to do, invented together. Tools as symbols, however, invite their imaginative displacements into other than their original contexts. In their new frames of reference, that is, as new symbols in an already established imaginative calculus, they may themselves be transformed, […]


December 1st, 2008 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Accessibility

(a postcard from Vienna) Wishing you (OpenOffice, Ubuntu, Free Software Foundation, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Debian, Scribus, Creative Commons, One Laptop per Child, Open Clip Art, DejaVu project, Open Font Library or any other F/LOSS or Open Content project) were here, at the European Ministerial e-Inclusion Conference …

Interesting questions

November 19th, 2008 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Interesting questions

Ever considered applying as researcher for the Jan van Eyck Academy in Maastricht (NL)? Extrastatecraft, a project led by Keller Easterling asks interesting questions about the relation between protocol and practice. The JvE offers great facilities (including financial support) for extra-academic research and with the appointment of Florian Schneider as ‘advising researcher’, the design department […]

What is in a name

November 5th, 2008 · Tags: · · · · 6 Comments

Of course we discuss now and than amongst ourselves, whether it is better to change ‘Open Source Publishing’ to: ‘Free Software Publishing’ (FSP…), or maybe: ‘Free, Libre and Open Source Publishing’ (FLOSP!). Reading Rob Myers text ‘Open Source Art Again‘ makes me bring it up here: The name Open Source was deliberately chosen for its […]

Awkward Gestures

November 2nd, 2008 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Awkward Gestures

Awkward Gestures

Out now: The Mag.net reader 3: Processual Publishing. Actual Gestures, edited by Alessandro Ludovico and Nat Muller. From the introduction: “a radical change is to be detected between the lines: publishing on paper is not about rigorously selling and distributing content to a specific target readership. It is more a ‘gesture’ that creates a space […]

Data analysis as a discourse

October 8th, 2008 · Tags: · · · · · 2 Comments

An interview with Michael Terry (ingimp) At the Libre Graphics Meeting 2008 in Wroclaw, just before Michael Terry presents ingimp to an audience of curious Gimp developers and users, we meet up to talk more about ‘instrumenting The Gimp’ and about the way Terry thinks data analysis could be done as a form of discourse. […]

doubt, critique, reason, hope

October 7th, 2008 · Tags: · · · 1 Comment

For everyone (like me) who keeps re-reading the 1992 edition of Robin Kinross’ Modern Typography: an essay in critical history… his revised edition (published in 2004) ends in an interestingly different way*: “The phrase ‘democratization of typography’ has become common, referring to the wide availability of the tools of production for type and typographic design. […]

Has re-design replaced revolution?

September 17th, 2008 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Has re-design replaced revolution?

Philosopher of science, Bruno Latour, opened the recent Networks of Design conference with a keynote address: A Cautious Prometheus? A Few Steps Toward a Philosophy of Design. In his lecture, Latour linked the growing importance of design with his idea that “matters of fact” have become “matters of concern“.

Congratulations sK1!

September 3rd, 2008 · Tags: · Comments Off on Congratulations sK1!

With a staggering 1463 points (runners up Typo3 and OpenLieroX ended on respectively 1269 and 572 points), the Open Source prepress project SK1 has well deserved it’s ticket to the upcoming Hackontest event in Zurich, 25-26 September. We’re very happy to hear that the sK1 team will have a chance to demonstrate their enthusiasm for […]

An update on the status of Utopia

July 9th, 2008 · Tags: · · 3 Comments

As you might have gathered from Thomas Phinney’s latest comment on our post The Status of Utopia, Adobe will not re-release Utopia under an Open Font License. It doesn’t mean though the font cannot be studied, copied, modified and distributed: “Although changing the license would make it easier for folks who find licenses confusing and […]

TUG Interview Corner

June 10th, 2008 · Tags: · · Comments Off on TUG Interview Corner

Dave Walden from the TeX User Group introduces his excellent TUG Interview Corner as follows: “technology is created by and evolves with use by people, and the points of view and backgrounds of the people influence the technology” The ever growing list of interviewees include Barbara Beeton, Donald Knuth, Herman Zapf and numerous other less […]

What you won’t get for 100$

June 3rd, 2008 · Tags: · Comments Off on What you won’t get for 100$

On his weblog Infinite Knots, Inkscape’s Bryce Harrington explains that if you want to have a feature implemented in an open source project, offering money will probably not help. He describes how “folks who aren’t developers” challenged Inkscape developers to make the application work on MacOSX, after first having tried doing it themselves. if you […]

Vote for Scribus

May 21st, 2008 · Tags: · 2 Comments

Our favourite killer-app Scribus is competing to be included in Hackontest, a “24 hour programming competition between teams of three open source software projects“. A container designed by E-Toy.corporation will house the competition, which takes place at the Google sponsored OpenExpo (the Swiss conference and trade show for Free and Open Source Software). “This room […]

The status of Utopia

May 20th, 2008 · Tags: · · 6 Comments

On October 11, 2006 Adobe granted members of the Tex User Group the right to use, modify and distribute the Utopia typeface: Adobe Systems Incorporated (“Adobe”) hereby grants to the TeX Users Group and its members a nonexclusive, royalty-free, perpetual license to the typeface software for the Utopia Regular, Utopia Italic, Utopia Bold and Utopia […]

We could save the term by using it

May 14th, 2008 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on We could save the term by using it

A lively discussion about the terminology used in Scribus: http://lists.scribus.info/pipermail/scribus/2008-May/028994.html All started with this post from Hans-Josef Heck, linking the language of digital lay-out to that of historical printing techniques: “Master” is the perfect English term. The master masters a page, a paragraph, etc. The Webster (edition 1994) says: 3: controlling the operation of other […]

Summer of Code / Season of Usability

March 20th, 2008 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Summer of Code / Season of Usability

Scribus is included in this year’s Google Summer of Code and now looking for contributions in the form of proposals and feedback to already formulated ideas: http://wiki.scribus.net/index.php/GsoC_2008_Ideas Scribus is also actively looking for student applications: http://wiki.scribus.net/index.php/GsoC_2008_Example_proposal From the Gnome Usability list: “Season of Usability is a series of mentored student projects to encourage students of […]

Multiple pages with (linked) boxes in Scribus

March 12th, 2008 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Multiple pages with (linked) boxes in Scribus

Besides pagenumbers, Scribus masterpages can currently only hold static elements. Ivan Monroy Lopez wrote us a very handy python script which puts as many linked or unlinked text boxes on as many pages you want. You can also run the script multiple times… measurements.py template.py

The situation looks very bright

March 12th, 2008 · Tags: · Comments Off on The situation looks very bright

In the summer of 1997, the NLNet Foundation sold its commercialized internet provision activities to UUNET (the internet subsidiary of WorldCom). This created a fund from which the foundation now supports activities that provide network technology to the community and keep outcomes in the “public domain”. NLnet has picked Identity, Privacy & Presence and Open […]


February 23rd, 2008 · Tags: · 1 Comment

This weekend the annual meeting of Free and Open Source Developers (FOSDEM) takes place in Brussels. As usual, the ULB fills up with developers from all over Europe, discussing large scale projects such as Gnome desktop, Mozilla, Xorg and PHP. Unfortunately none of the talks addressed our usual working tools (we’ll see more of that […]

A more intimate relationship

February 20th, 2008 · Tags: · 1 Comment

David Reinfurt’s essay Making do and getting by departs from the work of Muriel Cooper and Anthony Froshaug, and relates their critically engaged practice to contemporary projects such as Juerg Lehni’s Scriptographer. In this way, he convincingly shows how designers can and should reclaim a more intimate relationship with the digital production of their work. […]

Why you should own the beer company you design for

December 21st, 2007 · Tags: · 2 Comments

Interview with Dmytri Kleiner OSP met Venture Communist Dmytri Kleiner late night (thank you Le Coq for the soundtrack!) after his talk InfoEnclosure-2.0, in a bar. We wanted to ask him what his ideas about peer production could mean for the practice of designers and typographers.

Open Source Publishing Briefing

November 18th, 2007 · Tags: · · 1 Comment

With Mute’s Simon Worthington and Laura Oldenburg, OSP participated in a NM-X network evening. Following our presentations, we discussed the problems and potential of installing free software on proprietary platforms, whether it was interesting to develop a free software ‘design suite’, the position of free fonts and much more. [Notes] [Images] If you happen to […]

The Adventure Continues

November 11th, 2007 · Tags: · · · · 3 Comments

(A post for readers with some F/LOSS stamina)

Page tiling with poster

November 6th, 2007 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Page tiling with poster

Virginie and Laurence checking the V/J10 program in real size. Poster is an excellent tool to print .eps or .ps documents in tiles. You can adjust the final size of the file, the amount of overlap, size of the media you print on, work from a percentage (‘enlarge 500%’) etc. Install poster through Synaptic package […]

Free Operations

November 2nd, 2007 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Free Operations

2 day workshop Werkplaats Typografie, Arnhem (20 + 21 November, 2007) What permutations between typeface, typesetting and text can you imagine? How to design through scripting and can you read differently with computer manipulations? Full brief:

William Morris: Art and Its Producers

October 27th, 2007 · Tags: · · 1 Comment

While looking for designers writing about their relation to tools, I discovered the excellent William Morris Archives, part of the Marxist writers’ Internet Archive. To Morris, to own his means of production, was the only way a designer/workman could find back pleasure in work, and this in turn he considered a prerequisite for the production […]


October 17th, 2007 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Play!

“It may well turn out that one of the most important effects of open source’s success will be to teach us that play is the most economically efficient mode of creative work.” (Eric S. Raymond, postscript (2000) to The Cathedral and the Bazaar)

Creative License: Take as much as you want

October 16th, 2007 · Tags: · 1 Comment

Adobe’s new Creative Suite is currently advertised with the slogan: Creative License – Take as much as you want. Terms and Conditions which apply when you submit a feature request or a bug report: You agree that by submitting your Idea, you acknowledge and agree that any such Idea is nonconfidential, and that Adobe has […]

OSP @ EU Info Day Culture

October 10th, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on OSP @ EU Info Day Culture

Looking for ways to fund an European project on Free Fonts… OSP participated in the Info Day on cultural grants, organised by the European Commission in Brussels.

November 7: PubliActie

October 10th, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on November 7: PubliActie

PubliActie @ Boekenbeurs Antwerpen Inspired by the legacy of Cornelius Kiliaan, inventor of the first Dutch dictionary, Marthe van Dessel and Wendy van Wynsberghe look for neologisms and definitions in search of a word. Using Free Software and Free Licenses, the result will be an open source lexicon taking into account our daily feelings, experiences […]

OSP @ Werkplaats Typografie

October 9th, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on OSP @ Werkplaats Typografie

OSP visits Werkplaats Typografie in Arnhem (The Netherlands) to discuss a two-day workshop on Free Fonts with Anniek Brattinga and Karel Martens. http://www.werkplaatstypografie.org

November 3: OSP @ Integrated2007

October 8th, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on November 3: OSP @ Integrated2007

On Saturday November 3, OSP will lecture at Integrated2007 “a new vital international design conference taking place in deSingel Antwerp“: “OSP takes you on a trip into the wonderful universe of Free Software. We will meet alien devices and extraterrestrial tools, previously unknown to the world of graphic design. We like to imagine what would […]

Mute: now available in Free Software

September 16th, 2007 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Mute: now available in Free Software

Mute Vol 2 #6 – Living in a Bubble: Credit, debt and crisis is out! After a few months of testing and trying, the work flow of the entire magazine was converted to Free Software (OpenOffice, Inkscape, Gimp and Scribus on Kubuntu and Ubuntu systems) and… with succes. Read low-graphic pdf’s online or order your […]

La Rentrée

August 27th, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on La Rentrée

View from Les Rencontres de Lure (Lurs, France) Welcome back! OSP is about to start a busy year, but before we begin… here a fresh take on the application of Open Source methodologies in design: “An open source methodology could aid us in moving in this direction for it provides a contemporary justification for a […]


July 24th, 2007 · Tags: · · · 2 Comments

One of our Rotterdam reporters made us notice Inconsolata, a monospaced font designed by Ghostscript maintainer Raph Levien. Levien offers an OTF version, plus ‘raw’ fontforge files on his webpage. First and foremost, Inconsolata is a humanist sans design. I strove for the clarity and clean lines of Adrian Frutiger’s Avenir (the lowercase “a”, in […]

Open Printing Summit

July 17th, 2007 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Open Printing Summit

The Linux Foundation OpenPrinting work group, organises a get-together 24-27 September in Montreal. http://www.linux-foundation.org/en/OpenPrinting/SummitMontreal As stated on their site, the printing activities of the Linux Foundation revolve around a few focal points: For printer manufacturers, we want to make it easier to produce drivers that work across distributions and to get those drivers in the […]

Questions and answers [update]

July 16th, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on Questions and answers [update]

Over the last few months, the OSP and Mute team have established a new design and production workflow for Mute magazine, using Open Source tools. Below are a few of the questions we are encountering during the last stages of this process.

I think the ideas behind it are beautiful in my mind

July 8th, 2007 · Tags: · · 7 Comments

Interview with George Williams, Fontforge developer (…) I think the ideas behind it are beautiful in my mind — and in some sense I find the user interface beautiful. I’m not sure that anyone else in the world does, because it’s what I want, but I think it’s beautiful. (George Williams, May 2007) For those […]

CMYK overprint

June 28th, 2007 · Tags: · · 4 Comments

Wonderful Inkscape unfortunately does not support black overprinting. You can define colors in CMYK but it will not allow values such as 40% C + 40% M + 40% Y + 100% K (Inkscape for some reason automatically converts these back to 0% C + 0% M + 0% Y + 100% K). Left: cyan […]

How to turn a frog into a prince

June 27th, 2007 · Tags: · · · · · 2 Comments

Frog and Prince is a fairytale featuring free software, python scripting and an open font. The story was premièred at LGM 2007 (Montréal, Canada), and formed the centerpiece of the Canadian Printing Breakfast (Brussels, June 2007). Below is everything you need to make the recipe, but you can also browse through sample documents for each […]

Pancakes & Python

June 18th, 2007 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Pancakes & Python

Impressions from Canadian Printing Breakfast in Nepomuk Bar, Brussels. More images in Constants Image Repository. Special thanks: An, Wendy & Pierre (serving), Ivan (Python), Nurse (records), Peter (pictures), Nicolas (printing), Veronique (City Min(e)d).

Canadian Printing Breakfast – Impressions canadiennes au petit-déjeuner

June 10th, 2007 · Tags: · · · · · Comments Off on Canadian Printing Breakfast – Impressions canadiennes au petit-déjeuner

Samedi 16 Juin Nepomuk Bar – City Mine(d) – Rue Saint-Jean Nepomucen, 17, Bruxel Click here for English Open Source Publishing est fier de vous inviter à son petit-déjeuner canadien, où vous seront servies leurs dernières aventures dans le monde des Logiciels Libres. Au menu: mise en page animée d’un conte de fée, programmeur chercheur […]

Matching Tools

June 6th, 2007 · Tags: · · 1 Comment

Today’s challenge brought to you by indexer and typesetter John Culleton. These four covers were done using three different tools: Tex (context) Gimp Inkscape Who can match covers 1 through 4 with the correct tool? http://typebye.com/test2.html

Dear Software Developer,

June 4th, 2007 · Tags: · · Comments Off on Dear Software Developer,

We hope you are as much inspired by these texts as we are. You should read this! We think these texts are essential. These texts need to be seen in context of their time. Would this be of any use? Will you read this please? Please do not take their advice literally! We hope you […]

Watch this thread: do until done

May 25th, 2007 · Tags: · · · Comments Off on Watch this thread: do until done

Do free software developers need lawyers, when reverse engineering formats such as Corel Draw? How to work on the compatibility of file formats, when risking law suits from patent holders? Should we forget about opening up proprietary formats altogether? Jon Philips takes the position that developers should ‘do until done’: Its good to know generally […]

A user should not be able to shoot himself in the foot

May 19th, 2007 · Tags: · · 3 Comments

Interview with Andreas Vox, Scribus-developer While in the background participants to the Libre Graphics Meeting 2007 start saying goodbye to each other, Andreas Vox makes time to sit down with us in the hotel lounge. We want to talk to him about Scribus, the open-source application for professional page layout. Not only as users that […]

The double aspect of code

May 16th, 2007 · Tags: · · Comments Off on The double aspect of code

“Neurath’s pictograms owe much to the Modernist belief that reality may be modified by being codified – standardised, easy-to-grasp templates as a revolution in human affairs. But the templates themselves, or the code, may end up in their turn aestheticised, reified, in need of a further round of de-cryption, a paradigm common also to failed […]

How to catch Ukrainian TV in Moscow

May 15th, 2007 · Tags: · · Comments Off on How to catch Ukrainian TV in Moscow

Conversation with Igor Novikov and Valek Philippov (SK1) Excerpts from a conversation with Igor Novikov (Ukraine) and Valek Philippov (Russia) about how and why they are involved in SK1 pre-press software; the joy of reverse engineering and a handy tip for receiving Russian TV in Ukraine too. igor_valek.mp3 [25mb]

LGM Pictures

May 9th, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on LGM Pictures

LGM pictures here

Interview with George Williams (FontForge)

May 7th, 2007 · Tags: · · 4 Comments

Interview (unedited files) with George Williams, developer of FontForge, the open source font editing tool. Conversation about Shakespeare, Unicode, the pleasure of making beautiful things and pottery. Enjoy! Listen to the recording : GW_dl1.mp3 [8.1 mb] and GW_dl2.mp3 [16.6 mb] … or read the transcription: “I think the ideas behind it are beautiful in my […]

In Canada

May 3rd, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on In Canada

Montreal Flight Discoveries

May 3rd, 2007 · Tags: · · 1 Comment

While on our way to the Libre Graphics Meeting in Montreal we’ve done a quick test of Scribus 1.3.4cvs and … good news! Major New Feature No.1: possibility to add character styles (besides paragraph styles) and a general clean up of the way styles work. More testing needed, but interface and direction taken look promising. […]

Managing Fonts

April 28th, 2007 · Tags: · Comments Off on Managing Fonts

DEbian Font MAnager a.k.a. dfontmgr (available through the Synaptic Package Manager) is helpful when you want to register and unregister fonts on a Debian / Ubuntu system. After installation you can start the manager, which is a GUI for the Defoma package, from the command line. Type sudo dfontmgr (you need to be root to […]

Kissing Frogs

April 25th, 2007 · Tags: · · 1 Comment

Sneak preview of what New OSP might look like:

Technobohemians or the new Cybertariat?

April 16th, 2007 · Tags: · · 1 Comment

The Institute of Network Cultures published an insightful study on the culture of new media work by Sociologist Rosalind Gill. Technobohemians or the new Cybertariat? New media work in Amsterdam a decade after the web, is based on 40 ‘semi-structured’ interviews with practitioners (designers, developers, artists, information architects, …). Her study reveals the often precarious […]