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Inserting two of more graphics in the same paragraph ....

 
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Azlinon
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 11:33 am    Post subject: Inserting two of more graphics in the same paragraph .... Reply with quote

I'm trying to insert graphics into a thesis and have the problem that OO.o 2 always wants to overlap the images when more than one is inserted into the same paragraph. Is there any way to keep the images from overlapping such that inserting a second or third will result in the images just being stacked vertical?

As this is a thesis, I can't just manually position each or the minor inconsistancies will show and I'll have to change it (they measure everything). Just in case it matters, I am using the auto-caption feature and using an illustration index as well. If all goes well, I hope to submitt my template to the university for future students to use (no usable templates are supplied at present).

I've been an avid user of OOo and some of it's more advanced features for a long time, but this is the first one that has completely stumped me. Usually I'm the one getting bugged for offline help in such situations. I have of course google searched a while, plus the OOo documentation (this is not mentioned in the thesis guide or anything else that seemed to apply).

Regardless of whether you happen to know the solution, thank you for taking the time to read this. In the grand scheme of things, the support community is at least as important as the software itself.
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RealGrouchy
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not sure I understand your problem (I haven't tried to replicate it or anything).

Until someone else comes around, have you played around with the anchor settings (right click > anchor)?
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David
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

RealGrouchy wrote:
I'm not sure I understand your problem (I haven't tried to replicate it or anything).

Until someone else comes around, have you played around with the anchor settings (right click > anchor)?


I'd agree with that, and suggest anchoring to the paragraph ...which brings up the question of default anchor.

David.
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Azlinon
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 4:51 pm    Post subject: Tried anchor settings Reply with quote

Yes, I have already tried the various anchor settings. I have tried manually positioning the images from this point as well, and always made myself a mess as a result. That would be workable for just two images in a paragraph, but I have one longer paragraph that needs four figures. As it is a thesis, the graphics have to be consistantly handled as well. It's really hard trying to manually position graphics with appropriate spacing, etc.

For example, when I have paragraph anchor selected (was the default anyhow, but I played with them some trying to solve this):

I insert a figure that I am referencing in that paragraph text. The figure goes to the top of the paragraph auto-centered and everything. This part works great.

I then insert a second figure into that same paragraph. The figure goes into the exact same place that the first did, such that they are overlapping and only one of the images and captions is visible. Depending on the image in question, sometimes I can see parts of the other image sticking out from the edges.

Other than the fact these figures are overlapping and the text is only getting pushed down appropriate to one image (probably due to the overlap), everything is working great.
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thom314
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think what you are seeing is that every graphic you embed is getting automatically assigned your default "graphics" frame style. This puts them all in the same place. Given that you seem to want great consistency for placing your figures on your page, open the stylist, go to the frames styles and create yourself four frame styles, for example, figure1, figure2, figure3 and figure4. You can specify with great precision the size and placement on the page plus the word wrapping. As you bring graphics in to your document, assign the appropriate frame style to put it in your prefered standard location.

If you are writing an important and long document, everything should be controlled by styles from the stylist as opposed to manually moving figures and manually styling text. This gives you the greatest uniformity of appearance and the greatest control when you change your mind and want to re-style things.
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Azlinon
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 11:26 pm    Post subject: Already heavy on styles... Reply with quote

With the current exception of the front page, everything in this document is 100% styles and everything set to the default just to make sure I didn't get something weird in there. It's at 142 pages now, but will be about 200-250 by the time the rest of the appendices and graphics are copied in.

Yes, all of the graphics I am inserting are captioned and the outer frame is using the "Frame" style. I have it set for the text to not wrap text around the sides. I had not tried to switch to using multiple frame styles with fixed positions on the page, but won't that create a situation where I have to keep manually swapping styles depending on which page the graphics anchors happen to land? Also, due to non-uniformity of my graphics, I think I'd end up needing a lot more than 4 styles just to account for the different sizes (some graphics could fit 4 per page easy, but others only 2).

I'm fairly certain I might not be using 100% correct terminology, but perhaps what I want to make it do is vertically flow the graphics like I specified for the text. My prefered standard location would really be relative to the text, not an arbitrary place on the page if that is possible. By fixing the images to certain locations on a page I can see a case where a section gets bumped a bit later in the document by a paragraph or so and that in turn means a frame style for a graphic at the bottom of a page applies to the anchor which is now at the top of the page. This could likely put the image even with unrelated content in the next section if near a subhealer.

I had been using Lotus AmiPro 3.0 from the Windows 3.x days and successors until Smartsuite was discontinued some years ago. The last couple years I have been on OOo exclusively. AmiPro/WordPro had such behavior as standard from the beginning. I also think MS Word behaves similar in this regard, although it's been a while since I was forced to use Word.

Please note that this is in no way personal and I certainly doappreciate the suggestions. That said, I can't help but think there has got to be a better way to do this. This just seems really awkward for such a simple and routine task that other word processors handle reasonably well.

I have made a quick mock-up with a couple lines of text and three images so anyone that cares to take a look can see my problem. I didn't touch anything in this one except for changing the anchor type to to character such that it should flow based on that position if more text was present to give it somewhere to flow to. I have posted this simple example file (about 32k including simple graphics) at http://www.kettering.edu/~hous1441/OOo-graphics-problem.odt . I would certainly appreciate it if anyone can take a look and point out what if any stupid thing I'm doing (or concept I'm missing).
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vinikia
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 12:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am an absolute beginner in using OOo, so my knowledge is slowly building up (mind you, I am not a beginner with word processing, though, since I have used AmiPro 2, 3 and 3.1 and Word for Windows after AmiPro was abonded by Lotus for more than 15 year now), but can you not create one frame, anchor it to the paragraph, and put the three or four images in the frame ?

I just managed to do this, and this seems to work, including with captions and all.

The only drawback I found, is that the frame itself will have a great hight, and if the paragraph is moved to a place where the total of the height of the frame is greater than the remaining place on the page, the frame will fall off the page.

But maybe, someone with more knowledge of OOo can solve this.
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Azlinon
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 10:22 am    Post subject: Actually already tried that.... Reply with quote

The sample images I included were picked because they were small and would be easier on people with slow connections. A lot of the images are much larger before scaling down. By using a frame, the graphics end up farther away from the content (ex. three quarter page long paragraph, page and a half of graphics). So far, the closest thing I have to a solution is actually merging graphics horizontally in gimp and then rewriting the text and captions to try to make it fit.

AmiPro eventually became the wordprocessor WordPro and was released as part of Lotus Smartsuite. It was discontinued with the Smartsuite Millenium release somewhere around 1999 or 2000. If you happen to have old documents to convert to OOo (don't recall OOo having import capability for them natively), Smartsuite copies were quite cheap (~$20) on Ebay even back then. If you get it though, make sure you get release 9.8 or later (might have done another bugfix release after I got mine).

I'm kinda in a similar position as you, vinikia: Longtime AmiPro user and an overall word processing power user, I still haven't got the hang of all the little nuances of OOo. I can say though that I'm learning very fast. It's a little slower to pick up than AmiPro was, but light-years ahead of Word (UI nightmare than changes at each release) and Wordperfect.
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thom314
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think your problems will disappear if you open your stylist, select the "Graphics" frame style, select the Tab folder, and at the bottom enable the "Follow text flow" option. This will keep your figures within the surrounding caption frame.

I suppose you will still have the figure initially on top of each other when you insert them but you will then be able to successfully move them. I hope this helps.
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Azlinon
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 6:34 pm    Post subject: I think this might be usable..... Reply with quote

Ok, I think a combination of much that was said actually might work for my purposes. It's still crude, but after a couple pages seems to be working well enough I think I can get the document to pass inspection.

Once again, thank you everyone for all the help.

To get this far, all this needs to happen:

The "Frame" style appears to be special and does not behave like other styles even if a new style is copied from it. So, the newly inserted picture needs it's style to be set to something (anything?) else. I called mine Captioned Picture.

This style needs to have Wrap set to None, and needs values for the spacing fields. Without the extra spacing, things look inconsistant vertically (inconsistant from one picture to the next). Maybe they still are and that's just enough to hide them, so I'm unsure.

This style needs follow text flow enabled. This is huge. I had tried this before, but I think the fact it was previously on the "Frame" style was causing parts of this to be ignored.

The style needs to be set to center vertically. This might be coincidence, but with it set to top, fromtop, etc the graphics stacked. With follow text flow, not using Frame style, etc this seems at least preliminarily to work fine.

I found it seemed to work better with using paragraph text area for both horizontal and vertical, but didn't look too closely at those.

Once a picture is inserted, the archor needs to be set for "To Character" and placed at the area where it is referenced. At this point, there is a frame of style "Frame" with a caption and the graphic inside (assuming auto-caption is on, assuming it would be if working on a thesis). It needs to be dragged into approximate position and once there the style applied to auto-center it, etc.

Sometimes I still had to fudge the position a little by dragging and then hitting center though, so it's not 100% perfect. I'll see if I can add the majority of my images now and will post back if I find out anything more about this.
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Azlinon
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 8:59 pm    Post subject: Working..... kinda, sorta, sometimes Reply with quote

Well, it's working, but not completely. It still occasionally snaps the images onto one another, but randomly adding some blank lines somewhere before the paragraph and then removing them seems to take care of the problem temporarily for the most part. Other than that, I'm still seeing somewhat weird behavior in places such as OOo writer randomly deciding to place an image almost two pages behind the text reference, even with no other pictures on the same page or between the anchor point and the graphic. I've been trying to build 2.0.2.1 for most of the day to see if this flaky positioning might already have been addressed.
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