What software am I supposed to use?

This desktop publishing adventure has turned into a ridiculously expensive folly. And I’m beginning to wonder if I’m not trying to swat a fly with a cannonball. Not only is something like FrameMaker hideously expensive but it’s so damn complicated it’s a wonder anyone can actually use it. Whatever happened to the idea that software should be intuitive?

Indesign is quite a bit easier to work with but I can’t see ever justifying its cost. I think it would do what I want but again I don’t want to spend weeks learning to use a piece of software and the hit to the bank account is staggering.

I started checking out apps like Serif Page Plus and Xara Designer Pro. Both are pretty useful but again the cost is so damn high. So I have to ask am I even going about this the right way?

Here’s the gist of the project. Let’s say I have 10 Microsoft Word documents and each one of those Word files is about 10 pages. I want to combine these 100 pages into a single document which contains a Table of Contents, has page numbering and a header across the top of the page. Once in my DTP app I want to be able to add images and links to website. I want the images to have captions and also link to a website where additional images can be found. It would sort of be like how a magazine is laid out.

The end result is for the file to be exported as a PDF file. It would also be great to export certain pages or groups of pages as HTML files to post on the web.

It seems MS Word can actually do a great deal of this. It has the text formatting and headers but unless I did it completely wrong the image layout is pretty weak. I can’t seem to move the graphic around the page and place it where I want. Word can certainly do the PDF export portion but the export to HTML doesn’t instill me with confidence. Corel Draw does a lot of what I want, but it doesn’t really handle that volume of text very well and there are no headers or indexing capabilities. I’ve thought about Microsoft Publisher but I can’t get over the idea that it’s just for making awards and certificates. Plus, I don’t feel it has multi-document management either.

So what am I left with? What software do people use to combine several files together add some graphics and then export it all as PDF? Can this really only be done with $600 software?

Other articles of interest:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Comments
  • How to Block games by Title and Tag on Steam (1)
    • JACK: Thanks, same just wanted to block anime games in my discover
  • How To Disable the Quicken Registration Prompt (25)
    • Greg: For me, holding the *LEFT* CTL + Shift then clicking Online, One Step Update worked. I originally tried holding the right CTL + Shift, and it didn’t work. I’m using Quicken 2006, so I don’t know if it will work...
    • Joe SR>: My monthly income is deposited into my Credit Union account. I use debit whenever possible. I write checks manually and mail them. I use Quicken 2012 off-line only. I have entered all my money and investment accounts. I...
    • Prtet: Never say never….every time I swear I will never use Quicken again, I discover that there are still no viable alternatives. Amazing that there is no decent personal finance software.
    • Joe D.: Holding CTRL + Shift keys and selecting On Line | One Step Update from the main menu worked for my Quicken 2004. I’m grateful that you wrote a synopsis (“Simply put, …”) just beneath the link to the blog...
    • Susan Long: I bought my quicken disc in the beginning and it came with a registration number. I rang the helpline and they gave me the code to put in and talked me through it. It you downloaded your version then you don’t own it...
    • Peter: You might consider running your old version of Quicken on an ancient computer. This is what I have done for years. The newer versions are fraught with problems- criminal, in my opinion. One version made mathmatical errors when...
    • Roslyn Chamberlain: Can I stop the countdown in quicken 2001 says only 8 sessions left. and what will happen after?
  • Parsing Strings in Katalon – Split, Substring and Readlines (1)
    • Ellen: Thanks for sharing!! I like your contributions to Katalon topics.
  • Working with Dates and Date Formatting in Katalon Studio (6)
    • Ajoo: Thank you for the details. How do i remove leading “0” from dates. i.e. while formatting i receive 04/21/2019, but i need 4/21/2019. (same applies for date)
  • What is Katalon Studio? A Distro of Selenium, Groovy and Eclipse (1)
    • Mahesh: Looking for more posts on katalon studio.your katalon stuffs are always exiting
  • Simple wildcard searches for pattern matching (2)
    • Don Pedro: For that scenario it seems .contains would be your choice. For example, variable.contains(‘amazo n.com’) to see if the url had amazon.com. In that case, www.amazon.com, forum.amazon.com, retail.amazon.com would all...
    • Jony: Hi, How can I use a wild card to assert a URL is the one I want. I just want to verify the domain ==expected but not anything after it. Tried * but not working and only works when I have full URL.
  • Create a Dynamic Object at Runtime (2)
    • Saish: How to add shadow root parent to this runtime object..
    • Jeremy Brien: I appreciate this! I saw this post on LinkedIn this morning and was able to find a use case for it! I found that defining my xpath with an iterable variable allows me to loop through and capture text from tables created...