Date: Mon, 18 Jun 2001 10:28:50 -0600
Reply-To: Jack Hamilton <JackHamilton@FIRSTHEALTH.COM>
Sender: "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From: Jack Hamilton <JackHamilton@FIRSTHEALTH.COM>
Subject: Re: OT: Re: Excessive use of PDF files
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"Karsten M. Self" <kmself@IX.NETCOM.COM> wrote:
>Postscript, by contrast, *is* an open standard, is
>largely uniform across platforms, and is widely supported (though, of
>course, not natively on Legacy MS Windows though apps are freely
>available, see below).
You must have an editor shortcut for "Legacy MS Windows".
>PDF provides additional features such as searchability
At one time (and maybe still), that was dependent on the creating app. So PDF documents created by well-behaved apps could be searched, but Microsoft Word did its text justification by inserting spacing rather than using the native justification capabilities in PDF. So searching sometimes wouldn't work. Word also handled multiple columns in a way that I would call incorrect, so searching often wouldn't work in multi-col documents. Both of those problems might have been fixed.
>can point me to a postscript viewer offering text search), hyperlinks,
>thumbnails, etc. However, in balance, I find that only one of these
>features (search) is a benefit, and the default navigation and display
>of PDFs is worse that that of PS documents. The processing overhead of
>PDF is significantly higher than for reading a postscript document.
I'm surprised, since the PDF language is much simpler than PostScript.
>Note that the document "locking" features of PDF are largely bypassable
>by users. Conversion to a postscript file (a precondition to printing)
>will allow extraction of text from the postscript file if not from the
>source PDF. I generally question the intent of those who do attempt to
>do this in the first place -- it's a largely misguided effort.
I don't think conversion to PostScript is necessarily part of the printing process; what if you're not printing on a PS printer? PCL printers are probably common enough to have their own driver. And it's possible to specify that a document can't be printed, either. There are workarounds for that, of course - if it can be viewed, the text can be extracted somehow.
Development Manager, Technical Group
METRICS Department, First Health
West Sacramento, California USA