Jump to content

 
Photo

SVG tools?

- - - - -

  • Please log in to reply
6 replies to this topic

#1
Holograph

Holograph

    Contributor

  • Validated Member
  • PipPip
  • 20 posts
  • United States

I'm a rank amateur who has been playing with Manifold to create a few maps. One of the things that I'd like to do is generate SVG files, but I don't know of any way to do that within Manifold, and am unaware of tools that might take some output format from Manifold and generate an SVG file.

I've seen here that a number of people seem to use Adobe Illustrator as a kind of post-processor for labeling and other purposes, but I can't justify its expense just for casual use. Does anyone know of open-source or low-cost tools that might do the job?

Thanks in advance.

#2
benbakelaar

benbakelaar

    Ultimate Contributor

  • Associate Admin
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 658 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:North Brunswick, NJ
  • Interests:maps, information, technology, scripting, computers
  • United States

This one looks promising: http://www.svgfactor...umentation.html but I've never tested it before.

I was surprised that IrfanView and GIMP (the two kings of free image editor/viewers) both don't seem to natively support export/save as SVG.

#3
Holograph

Holograph

    Contributor

  • Validated Member
  • PipPip
  • 20 posts
  • United States

I tried a number of free solutions, and none of them are entirely satisfactory. Manifold can export a layout as .ai, .pdf, .ps, or .emf files. Unfortunately most of the formats seem to have compatibility problems with various tools that convert to SVG, so the result is both huge and improperly rendered. I tried using the .ai format with an evaluation copy of Illustrator, and Illustrator complained about an invalid code in the file. Perhaps my map is just too complex to work properly with the tools that work with SVG, or perhaps Manifold just doesn't export properly.

#4
Hans van der Maarel

Hans van der Maarel

    CartoTalk Editor-in-Chief

  • Admin
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,868 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:The Netherlands
  • Interests:Cartography, GIS, history, popular science, music.
  • Netherlands

I tried a number of free solutions, and none of them are entirely satisfactory. Manifold can export a layout as .ai, .pdf, .ps, or .emf files. Unfortunately most of the formats seem to have compatibility problems with various tools that convert to SVG, so the result is both huge and improperly rendered. I tried using the .ai format with an evaluation copy of Illustrator, and Illustrator complained about an invalid code in the file. Perhaps my map is just too complex to work properly with the tools that work with SVG, or perhaps Manifold just doesn't export properly.


Hmmm, as far as I know, Manifold exports an older version of the Illustrator format, but new versions should be able to open it just fine. It does produce pretty complex files, with clipping masks and so on, so maybe you have to release them before trying to export to SVG.
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
Red Geographics
Email: hans@redgeographics.com / Twitter: @redgeographics

#5
Holograph

Holograph

    Contributor

  • Validated Member
  • PipPip
  • 20 posts
  • United States

I don't think there is anything particularly strange about the Manifold map, and I didn't create any clipping masks, and if Manifold creates them automatically for any reason, I wouldn't know how to find them or release them.

The error in Illustrator CS2 appears when opening the AI file created by Manifold. The error has very little information: "Can't open the illustration. The illustration contains an illegal or misplaced operator. Offending operator: "Q" Context:

B
*U
Q
LB
%AI5_EndLayer
Q

The file does open, but much information is missing and the various rendering choices are corrupted. All the solid colors are replaced with one of 4 fill patterns that I had used in a few areas of the Manifold map. The Manifold layout contained an inset map and a inset drawing for a custom scale bar, and neither of those insets survived in Illustrator. I can hand edit most of the layers and objects within the layers to apply the proper colors and opacity, but the work involved is roughly equivalent to the work I did in Manifold in the first place.

It's probably a viable option, but not a pleasant one since it involves repeating almost everything done in Manifold, without having Manifold's ability to use themes to control rendering.

edit: Ah, it looks like the problem was with layers that had areas rendered thematically with area patterns. When I hide those layers before exporting, Illustrator can read the file just fine. I can export the problematic layers separately and get the errors, but the results can then be manually fixed and inserted into the main map. Thanks for giving me the encouragement to keep trying.

#6
Hans van der Maarel

Hans van der Maarel

    CartoTalk Editor-in-Chief

  • Admin
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,868 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:The Netherlands
  • Interests:Cartography, GIS, history, popular science, music.
  • Netherlands

edit: Ah, it looks like the problem was with layers that had areas rendered thematically with area patterns. When I hide those layers before exporting, Illustrator can read the file just fine. I can export the problematic layers separately and get the errors, but the results can then be manually fixed and inserted into the main map. Thanks for giving me the encouragement to keep trying.


Yeah, I was wondering about those area patterns when I first read your post. Illustrator doesn't always like those...

As for the clipping masks, that's "Objects - Clipping Masks - Release" (off the top of my head, I'm using a Dutch version of Illustrator)
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
Red Geographics
Email: hans@redgeographics.com / Twitter: @redgeographics

#7
BEAVER

BEAVER

    Master Contributor

  • Validated Member
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 185 posts
  • Location:Middletown, NY
  • United States

Manifold does a great job exporting to AI. I've had 100+ MB files, all vectors without any rester images and they open without any problems in AI with correct layers, colors, groups. The only problem is labels. Mapublisher and Canvas X takes care of that.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

-->