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Inkscape

Inkscape

Inkscape is an Open Source vector graphics editor, with capabilities similar to Illustrator, Freehand, CorelDraw, and Xara X. The interface is designed to be comfortable and efficient for skilled users, while remaining conformant to GNOME standards so that users familiar with other GNOME applications can learn its interface rapidly. It uses the W3C standard Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) file format, which is an open, industry-standard XML-based format for vector graphics developed by the W3C organisation. The popularity of this format is growing fast.

Supported SVG features include shapes, paths, text, markers, clones, alpha blending, transforms, gradients, patterns, and grouping. Inkscape also supports Creative Commons meta-data, node editing, layers, complex path operations, bitmap tracing, text-on-path, flowed text, direct XML editing, and more. It imports formats such as JPEG, PNG, TIFF, and others and exports PNG as well as multiple vector-based formats.

Inkscape natively supports opening only SVG and SVGZ (gzipped SVG) formats.

Inkscape can natively save as SVG, SVGZ, Postscript/EPS/EPSi, Adobe Illustrator (*.ai), LaTeX (*.tex), and POVRay (*.pov).

With the help of extensions, Inkscape can open/save as PDF, EPS, AI, Dia, Sketch and some others.

Inkscape can natively import most raster formats (JPG, PNG, GIF, etc.) as bitmap images, but it can only export PNG bitmaps.

Although Inkscape does not have all the features of the leading commercial vector editors, the latest version provides a large portion of basic vector graphics editing capabilities. People report successfully using Inkscape in a lot of very different projects (web graphics, technical diagrams, icons, creative art, logos, maps).

Translations available in Belarusian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, French, Galician, German, Greek, Hungarian, Irish Gaelic, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Lithuanian, Norwegian, Panjabi, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovene, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese.

 Inkscape 0.48.4

Price
Free to download

Size
19.7MB

License
GNU GPL v2

Developer
Over 100 developers

Website
www.inkscape.org

System Requirements
GTK+ version 2.8.x

Other dependencies include:
gtkmm2 => 2.4, boehm-gc Garbage Collection Libraries =>6.4

Support Sites:
FAQ, Tutorials and Help, Planet Inkscape, Inkscape Wiki, Inkscape Manual, Inkscape Tutorials Blog, LinuxPlanet Tutorial

Selected Reviews:
Softpedia

Features

Object Creation

  • Drawing: pencil tool (freehand drawing with simple paths), pen tool (creating Bezier curves and straight lines), calligraphy tool (freehand drawing using filled paths representing calligraphic strokes)
  • Shape tools: rectangles (may have rounded corners), ellipses (includes circles, arcs, segments), stars/polygons (can be rounded and/or randomized), spirals
  • Text tool (multiline text, full on-canvas editing)
  • Embedded bitmaps (with a command to create and embed bitmaps of selected objects)
  • Clones ("live" linked copies of objects), including a tool to create patterns and arrangements of clones
Object Manipulation
  • Affine transformations (moving, scaling, rotating, skewing), both interactively and by specifying exact numeric values
  • Z-order operations
  • Grouping objects, with a way to "select in group" without ungrouping, or "enter the group" making it a temporary layer
  • Layers, with a way to lock and/or hide individual layers, rearrange them, etc; layers can form a hierarchical tree
  • Copying and pasting objects
  • Alignment and distribution commands
Fill and stroke
  • Color selector (RGB, HSV, color wheel)
  • Color picker tool
  • Copy/paste style
  • A gradient editor capable of multi-stop gradients
  • Pattern fills
  • Dashed strokes, with many predefined dash patterns
  • Path markers (e.g. arrowheads)
Operations on paths
  • Node editing: moving nodes and Bezier handles, node alignment and distribution, etc.
  • Converting to path (for text objects or shapes), including converting stroke to path
  • Boolean operations
  • Path simplification, with variable threshold
  • Path insetting and outsetting, including dynamic and linked offset objects
  • Bitmap tracing (both color and b/w)
Text support
  • Multi-line text
  • Uses any installed outline fonts, including right-to-left scripts
  • Kerning, letterspacing, linespacing adjustments
  • Text on path (both text and path remain editable)
Rendering
  • Fully anti-aliased display
  • Alpha transparency support for display and PNG export
  • Complete "as you drag" rendering of objects during interactive transformations
Miscellaneous
  • Live watching and editing the document tree in the XML editor
  • PNG and PostScript export
  • Command line options for export and conversions
  • Perfectly compliant SVG format file generation and editing

Return to Graphics Home Page | Return to PDF Tools Home Page | Return to Vector Graphics Home Page

Inkscape also features in our 'Linux Equivalents to Windows Software' section. The category selector below allows you to filter the different types of software included in that separate article.

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Last Updated Saturday, April 19 2014 @ 05:34 AM EDT


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