Symbol edition and reuse

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Symbol edition and reuse

Xaviju Julián
Hi,

As suggested in the new features section I'd like to see the community opinion on a possible feature suggestion.

As a heavy user of the symbols feature for web design I tend to save many UI portions of my design as symbols and reuse them across many different documents.

Sometimes I need to edit one of those symbols and I'd like all documents that are referencing that symbol to update. Same behavior as when I update the original symbol SVG code, all references will keep using that symbol, but updated.

Right now, the only way I found the inkscape UI has to edit a symbol is to `unplug` (sorry don't know the english word) it from its reference, but that does not allow me to reuse and update.

Do this make sense to you? Am I missing something?

Thanks,
Xavi

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Re: Symbol edition and reuse

Eduard Braun
Am 22.10.2017 um 01:28 schrieb Xaviju Julián:
Hi,

As suggested in the new features section I'd like to see the community opinion on a possible feature suggestion.

As a heavy user of the symbols feature for web design I tend to save many UI portions of my design as symbols and reuse them across many different documents.

Sometimes I need to edit one of those symbols and I'd like all documents that are referencing that symbol to update. Same behavior as when I update the original symbol SVG code, all references will keep using that symbol, but updated.

Right now, the only way I found the inkscape UI has to edit a symbol is to `unplug` (sorry don't know the english word) it from its reference, but that does not allow me to reuse and update.

Do this make sense to you? Am I missing something?

Thanks,
Xavi

In principle you can do that already:
<svg width="800" height="600" xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg" xmlns:xlink= "http://www.w3.org/1999/xlink">
    <image xlink:href="symbol1.svg" x="0" y="0" height="50px" width="50px"/>
    <use xlink:href="symbols.svg#symbol1" x="0" y="0" height="50px" width="50px"/>
</svg>
  • The first example uses the <image> tag to embed a whole SVG document (as you could do with any raster image).
  • The second example uses the <use> tag to re-use a single object referenced via an ID but loading that object from another SVG document instead of the current document.

In both examples your document will update when the linked resource changes.

Only downside: I don't think Inkscape offers to do this via UI right now (I might be wrong), but I just tested the example (which I prepared in a text editor) in Inkscape 0.92.2 and it worked flawlessly.

In principle it also shouldn't be too hard to make the symbol dialog link symbols instead of embedding/copying them in the <defs> section.

Best Regards,
Eduard


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Re: Symbol edition and reuse

Martin Owens-2
On Sun, 2017-10-22 at 02:13 +0200, Eduard Braun wrote:
> Only downside: I don't think Inkscape offers to do this via UI right
> now (I might be wrong), but I just tested the example (which I
> prepared in a text editor) in Inkscape 0.92.2 and it worked
> flawlessly.

There may be some memory leaks still kicking around but glad it still
works.

> In principle it also shouldn't be too hard to make the symbol dialog
> link symbols instead of embedding/copying them in the <defs> section.

There's a whole rainbow of options:

 * Link directly from one document to another (has file reference
issues)
 * Copy the clone into the document's clones list and create link <- we
do this
 * Copy the clone into the document to make an editable version

I think fixing editability would be a big win, if we can somehow treat
clone links like groups it would open up a bunch of functionality.

Best Regards, Martin Owens

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