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Background Information - Getting Started

I. Background Information. Before you can begin using Compass and Inkscape together, there are a few things you need to do.

A. Latest Version Of Compass. To take advantage of the SVG export features, you must have the latest version of Compass. You can download the latest version here: ..\..\downloads\download.htm

B. Getting Inkscape. To use Inkscape, you will need to install a copy on your computer. You can download a copy here: Download Inkscape. I would recommend that you use Inkscape 0.47 or better. Inkscape 0.46 has bugs when copying and pasting objects. Inkscape 0.47 is due to be released in September of 2009. If you can't get Inkscape 0.47 or better, I would recommend that you get the latest development snapshot. They may not be as stable as a final released version, but it won't have the paste bug which will cause problems with some of the mapping tasks.

C. Learning Inkscape. This tutorial will teach you to use many aspects of  Inkscape but it is still useful to have a general idea of the capabilities of the program. There are also many features of Inkscape that are not covered in this tutorial. They may turn out to be very useful creating and beautifying you maps. For this reason, it is useful to read through the on-line Documentation. Also, lots of interesting and useful tricks can be found here: Tutorials.

D. Learning Cave Mapping With Inkscape. It takes time to learn to use any program, particularly when trying to do something as complicated as cave mapping. If you are just starting out, you probably want to begin by making small practice maps of say 10 shots or less. Pick something that you don't care about and don't try to make a perfect finished map. This will allow you to practice and make mistakes without pulling your hair out.  This way you can start over if you make mistakes and gradually learn the tools and tricks.

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