Date: May 30, 2012 12:42 PM
Author: Jim Hokanson
Subject: layered vector support for exported figures

Hi all,

I tend to export my figures to Adobe Illustrator for tidying up, resizing,etc. I have been thinking for some time about creating a library that exports figures the way that I would want them to be exported to Illustrator. Currently I use a mix of exporting to the old Adobe Illustrator 5 format or eps. The problem with these formats tends to be the poor layering, excessive masking, and redundant presence of certain objects. For any given figure this results in a good 10 - 20 minutes of cleaning the figure. Before it is in the format I would have expected it to be exported in.

Requirements are:
- layering of objects - (In the Illustrator/Adobe sense)
- grouping of objects
- text support
- shapes with outer stroke
- path support

My question is, before and IF I begin on this adventure, if anyone has any advice. Specifically:
- code that already does this
- export format, I think Adobe Illustrator 5 can do what I want, I'm not sure if eps can, I think pdf can
- external libraries that support this functionality

Also, if anyone is interested in helping I'd be interested in knowing that as well.

Thanks,
Jim