[texworks] Commenting pdfs?

kap4lin kap4lin at gmail.com
Sun Jan 10 20:21:20 CET 2010

On Fri, Jan 8, 2010 at 1:00 PM, Stefan Löffler <st.loeffler at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi,
> this is a call for comments.
> I recently found out that it may be possible to add comments to pdf
> documents without going through poppler (which currently doesn't support
> this feature). What I'd like to know now is if this is a feature the
> community would like.
> Here are a few pros/cons to get the discussion started:
> Pros:
> * Facilitates cooperation
> * There are few to none apps on Linux that support this
> Cons:
> * This would be a pdf-viewer-only feature. There's no way to keep such
> comments between runs of latex, for example. As such, it's not really a
> feature expected of a TeX editor. Equivalently, there a numerous other
> apps out there (at least on Windows, I don't know about Mac) that
> provide this feature.
> * It's would essentially work around a deficiency of the poppler library
> (but I don't know enough about their internals to submit a patch to the
> poppler people).
> * It would be a rather simplistic approach - just adding comments (and
> perhaps, one day, modifying/deleting them as well). No fancy
> strike-outs, markups and the like for the time being.
> What do you think? Killer-feature or absolute waste of time?

My personal opinion:
Although this could be a useful feature (not sure about "killer") but
I somehow don't think it is worth the amount of effort needed. The
developer man-hour can be utilized on the 'editor' end.

And again, will this be portable? (Eg: a comment made using Tw in
Linux will it be readable/editable by adobe reader on Windows?) [See

Here is another view: if cross platform collborations are of interest
(which I am sure each and every one would agree) then doing something
fancy on the editor end would be excellent. LaTex (editors, to be
precise) sorely lacks this. (But again that is what Tw is not trying
to be.) Almost always I've seen people going back and forth between
office suites (again, 99% MS Office) for these.

[*] I can see two ways to use such comments - (1) I (who is writing
the latex file) want to make a quick note for myself knowing that it
will go away when I typeset the document again - - short lived utility
(-- why will I not make a comment in the source file then?) and (2)
after finishing a draft I want to send the pdf to a collaborator for
review and want to make some visible comments in the pdf file itself
-- relatively longer life span for those comments.

http://counter.li.org  #402424

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