[tex-live] incremental pdf (was: Please enable ipc in tex)

George N. White III aa056 at chebucto.ns.ca
Wed Jul 21 14:05:59 CEST 2004

On Wed, 21 Jul 2004, Martin Schröder wrote:

> On 2004-07-20 13:48:59 -0700, Hans Hagen wrote:
>> incremental would mean something:
>> flush page
>> flush fonts and images
>> add xref section
>> and for the next page overwrite the fonts/images and xref section which
>> probably ends up in an inefficient process.

Why not just emit 1-page PDF's without embedding fonts?  Since the viewer 
would be running in parallel with tex, you can assume the fonts are 
available, so they don't need to be embedded. An existing viewer could be 
adapted to present the pages as if they were part of a single document, 
and a post-processor could be used to assemble a final PDF and embed 
the fonts.

> And needs a new previewer. Your best bet is to convince Adobe to
> add this feature to PDF 2.0 :-(

Why wait for Adobe?  Do it and Adobe will follow.

PdfTeX solves a lot of problems, but it is much more complicated than TeX 
due to all the font/image smarts that are required.  On SGI Irix using 
system (e.g., shared) libraries, the pdfetex binary is 3x larger than tex, 
needs both C++ and C compilers, and is linked to 3x as many libraries (C++ 
runtime, libpng, zlib, libfofi, libGoo, md5.a, and libxpdf).  An ipdfTeX 
could be simplified and made less platform dependent by offloading much of 
the font/image processing that the current pdftex steals from xpdf to the 
viewer and ipdf2pdf converter.  Graphical display and font handling are 
platform dependent -- a platform neutral ipdfTeX with viewers for each 
platform could provide a more reponsive authoring environment and simplify
the work of developers, porters, and maintainers.

George N. White III  <aa056 at chebucto.ns.ca>
   Head of St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada

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