I've decided to write my few thoughts in this thread because of two reasons:
1. I think that what I want to write about is pretty SPECIAL,
2. Even if I have plenty of time I am not in the mood to write a big review lately.
The thing I want to discuss is something I built up by my own which I call "fenix platform"
The main idea was to have nice set of tools related to general design and Information Architecture work which I would like to do in the future. The basic goal was to have good compatibility between various application and of course: for free. The best way to achieve that was trying to look for some ready answers in the Internet or building something from puzzles. And that is what I have already did. I've realized that XML (and files formats created using this mark-up language) is something worth to be investigated. After that it wasn't hard to find out what I should be using:
- office suite (documents, spreadsheets, presentations, drawings),
- vector graphic editor,
- raster graphic editor,
- DTP tool,
- 2D vector animation.
Wide range of open source tools with possibilities to use XML (SVG) files as formats for export or import. They allow to design almost everything in any way you want to. Easy to learn, easy to use, easy to download. Imho the only way to have "suite" with similar possibilities is to buy whole packages from Adobe or Corel but it would rip off my pocket for sure.
I don't want to write detailed description for each tool because many of these are already known but I want to share an idea for setting up small "design studios" for free, for your owns only.