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The joys of Free Software

I just had a moment, preparing some business cards for print, and I was exclusively using Free Software. I wanted to share this small moment of joy with you to describe some of the tools I used.

I just had a moment, preparing some business cards for print, and I was exclusively using Free Software. I wanted to share this small moment of joy with you to describe some of the tools I used.

Grow Digital business card front

First up was the Inkscape vector drawing program (probably the finest drawing program in the world). Need to expand the page to include the 3mm bleed? Not a problem, simply Page > Document Properties... > Resize page to drawing or selection. Alas you can't put paragraph spacing in Inkscape, but to align discrete text blocks? Oh yes, Object > Align and Distribute > Make vertical gaps between objects equal. Then Save As > PDF and we're away.

Inkscape Document Properties

Inkscape Align and Distribute

However, the printer wants the business cards as one PDF file, and I have front and back as two separate PDF pages. The answer, PDF Chain, a GUI front-end to pdftk, "the PDF toolkit". Add the two files to the Merge tab and click Save. Simpler than simple.

PDF Chain

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