[OS X TeX] PDF rendering bug in macOS 10.14.5

Ross Moore ross.moore at mq.edu.au
Sun May 19 23:22:05 CEST 2019

Hello Justin, and Alun

On 20 May 2019, at 6:52 am, Justin C. Walker <justin at mac.com<mailto:justin at mac.com>> wrote:

> On May 19, 2019, at 11:51 , Alun Carr <alun.j.carr at ucd.ie<mailto:alun.j.carr at ucd.ie>> wrote:
> This doesn't relate to using TeX to produce PDFs, but it relates to an Apple PDF display bug, which might impact on TeX use.

No, not really.

The problem is that this PDF did not embed the main fonts that it uses for textual content.
In this case it is  TimesNewRomanPSMT encoded as  WinANSI  which is not really standard
in the Apple world.

So the PDF display software has to pick an available font to use, from what is in the system.
If it is not encoded the same way, then yes you can expect characters placed into non-standard
positions to be skipped, even though widths are available (in the PDF itself).

Furthermore, there is no /Charset entry, and no  /ToUnicode  resource.
So there’s not much to go on, to deduce the correct character to use.

Adobe gets it right in Acrobat Pro and Reader, presumably because it does know the encoding,
but other software may not.

BTW, I experience the missing  fi  characters using MacOS 10.13.6  with Safari,
but it is fine in an early version of iOS.

> I downloaded a PDF, "The History of Worcestershire Sauce" (don't ask!):
> http://www.soyinfocenter.com/pdf/152/Worc.pdf<https://protect-au.mimecast.com/s/PatmCq71jxfX68GpUMUNmt?domain=soyinfocenter.com>
> and found that within Safari and Preview, the fi and fl ligatures are rendered as blank spaces (see, e.g., page 5). In Adobe Reader, muPDF, and xpdf, they display perfectly. The PDF claims that it was produced using Acrobat Distiller.
> Does anyone know I can report this to Apple? I apologise in advance if anyone thinks that I'm wasting their time.

If you have an Apple ID, you can use it to sign on to
and fill out a bug report.

If you don’t, the are easy to get. Go to (e.g.) System Preferences -> iCloud on your mac. There’s a link to create one.



PS: your problem sounds like an issue with PDFKit, used by Safari, Preview, Skim, and others.

Blame the PDF creator software first.
The Metadata says this is   Pstill5.dll .

Justin C. Walker, Curmudgeon at Large
Institute for the Absorption of Federal Funds
If it weren't for carbon-14, I wouldn't date at all.

Justin C. Walker
Institute for the Absorption of Federal Funds
186,000 Miles per Second
Not just a good idea:
it's the law!



Dr Ross Moore
Department of Mathematics and Statistics
12 Wally’s Walk, Level 7, Room 734
Macquarie University, NSW 2109, Australia
T: +61 2 9850 8955  |  F: +61 2 9850 8114
M:+61 407 288 255  |  E: ross.moore at mq.edu.au<mailto:ross.moore at mq.edu.au>
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