Bug 94699 - Freehand tool: turning off smoothing activity
Summary: Freehand tool: turning off smoothing activity
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Draw (show other bugs)
(earliest affected) release
Hardware: x86 (IA32) Windows (All)
: medium enhancement
Assignee: Not Assigned
: 139372 (view as bug list)
Depends on:
Blocks: 105618 138293
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2015-10-02 13:15 UTC by Piteur
Modified: 2023-11-05 19:59 UTC (History)
7 users (show)

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:

Freehand drawing having 'edit points' enabled to illustrate sampling (15.40 KB, image/png)
2015-10-06 16:07 UTC, Heiko Tietze

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Description Piteur 2015-10-02 13:15:32 UTC
DRAWING TOOL : freehand tool. (LibO - Windows XP HOME SP3)

There should be an option to set the level of smoothing activity, like increasing/decreasing and even turning it off, as that would make the tool much more flexible and would introduce a basic handwriting option.

Comment 1 Buovjaga 2015-10-06 11:21:59 UTC
UX: what do you guys say? Is handwriting out of scope or in?
Comment 2 Heiko Tietze 2015-10-06 11:32:33 UTC
Beluga from comment #1)
> Is handwriting out of scope or in?
Do we have defined a scope?

@Piteur: The freehand drawing does pretty much what it is supposed to do, at least for me. Could you please show an example what you expect.
Comment 3 Buovjaga 2015-10-06 11:52:06 UTC
I like to pretend we have a scope.
Fake it till you make it, you know..
Comment 4 V Stuart Foote 2015-10-06 14:36:49 UTC
Not out of scope, but would be new functionality.

IIUC the "smoothing" that occurs now is a result of the freehand poly line or freehand filled poly line being a constructed of spline curves between "control" points. This is the same code used for freehand interpolating curves on charts.  There are simply too few points laid down to support hand lettering. 

To support freehand lettering in current the point density of the polyline drawing would need to be increased exponentially and refactored considerably for this special case.

More likely this should be handled with a new draw/impress module to support letting. And might be integrated from another FOSS project.


Comment 5 Heiko Tietze 2015-10-06 16:05:13 UTC
(In reply to V Stuart Foote from comment #4)
> Not out of scope, but would be new functionality.
If LibO is understood as full-featured graphics tool...

And of course I understand what the OP requests. But the current implementation works perfectly for me. It has enough sampling points to make it look smooth when I try to draw a circle and snappy in case of scratch-out movements. However, my artistically skills are limited and maybe an illustrator with a pen tablet has different requirements. IMHO that needs specifications on the one hand, and our decision if it's in-scope of an office suite.
Comment 6 Heiko Tietze 2015-10-06 16:07:45 UTC
Created attachment 119359 [details]
Freehand drawing having 'edit points' enabled to illustrate sampling
Comment 7 Buovjaga 2015-10-06 17:53:02 UTC
Yep, my personal proposal for a LibO product vision defined by negatives:
- not for artistic illustration
- not for image manipulation
- not for web authoring

There is room for more negatives :)
Comment 8 Robinson Tryon (qubit) 2016-08-25 05:39:13 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 9 Heiko Tietze 2016-10-05 09:54:12 UTC
While I still believe the freehand tool is well suited for its purpose following Stuarts argumentation is also good. Setting to NEW.
Comment 10 Heiko Tietze 2018-01-12 10:36:56 UTC
As stated above a parameter under tools > options makes sense, if possible. However, it will likely always remain a vector (bezier curve) rather than exact pixel information as known from raster graphic tools.
Comment 11 Regina Henschel 2018-01-12 17:38:52 UTC
Corel Draw has a "Reduce Nodes" slider and spin-field in the property bar, which is mainly designed for freehand curves. In Corel Draw you can set the tool before you start drawing or use it with the finished drawing. Corel Draw has in newer versions an additional local "Smooth" tool with automatic, which is designed to be used to correct the result of the Power Trace tool, which converts bitmap to vector graphic.

Inkscape has a spin field to set the amount of smoothing before drawing, if you select the freehand tool. It has a menu item to reduce nodes in automatic mode on the finished drawing.

My suggestion: If a node reduction tool is introduced in LibreOffice, then it should be in the "Edit points" toolbar. That would require, that the toolbar will be already opened, when you choose a line tool. Currently it opens only in edit point mode of a finished drawing.
Comment 12 Joe Simon 2019-11-22 12:14:21 UTC Comment hidden (spam)
Comment 13 V Stuart Foote 2021-01-02 18:01:17 UTC
*** Bug 139372 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Comment 14 Hannes Damm 2023-11-05 19:59:01 UTC
Would it be possible to add some option to increase the number of vectors/points for the free form tool? The amount of disc space/computing power invested should be a decision of the user imho and nowerdays isn't a real limit any more if it comes to a hand full of Bezier curves in a document. 

Maybe one could try it in a fork of the LO project and later integrate this into the main branch if its appreciated? I was waiting for this feature in LO since almost 10 years now and I think many users do as well, given the numerous bugreports similar to this one. I am even thinking of spending money to some (more decent) developer (than myself) to implement it into LO...