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Re: [Groff] Getting a background color

From: Miklos Somogyi
Subject: Re: [Groff] Getting a background color
Date: Sat, 22 Oct 2005 18:57:32 +1000

On 22/10/2005, at 4:21 PM, Clarke Echols wrote:

Thanks to all who responded to my question about building a
presentation using groff instead of PowerPoint.  The ideas were
very good, and I may still pursue them.  As for now, I was looking
for a way to do what I needed to do using groff, going to PS or

I discovered a way to create a background color, over which I
can create colored patterns and text.  The result is a solid,
constant color over the entire page.

1.  Draw a box that borders the entire page by using the polygon
    solid draw escape sequence (\M[color]\D'E...'\M[]).

2.  Draw any other figures and fill with desired colors.

3.  Draw the text for the page.

Begin next page.

Whether this gets me what I want for a presentation remains
to be seen, but at least I can create a page with colored background
and put things exactly where I want them, without using PowerPoint.

If I want them as paper slides, I can send the pages to a color

Now, if I could find a way to transition colors from one to another
across the space, either top-to-bottom, side-to-side, or
corner-to-corner like one package does (I didn't download and try
it, but the demo pages look fascinating)...



Groff mailing list


I'm an old troff user and I'm just getting acquainted with groff.
As I can see groff's supports the inclusion of PostScript code, even into macros. What you are after is a pretty trivial PS job and, though I haven't tried it yet, I imagine that it can be put into a macro, to be called first thing after new page.

Filling with solid colour is perhaps a one or two-line code. If you have a Level 3 PS printer then gradient fill is done directly by the interpreter. If you only have an older Level 2
printer, you can do it by organizing a cycle (2 more lines perhaps).

You can do very fancy things by defining an image (randomly or not) and ask PostScript to interpolate. This way you can imitate natural materials (linen, marble, glass, wall-to-wall carpet, shrubs, etc.). Not much work to type, quite a bit more to learn how to. The image is generated on the fly very fast, it's nothing like including a photograph.

There is a lot one can do to dazzle. Whether one should dazzle the audience with
fancy background, is another question.
I believe that the fancier secondary things are the more they distract from concentrating on what one
would like to say.

Personally I'd rather use solid colour or even white background but would do my graphical best to draw attention to the raison d'etre of the slide. Sometimes it is easy to do the right thing,
sometimes it is not.



Currently I am doing other things but in a few weeks time I'll be back at learning and using groff.
Then I'll be able to help you in more detail.

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