[texhax] TeX -> PostScript, but in a resolution-independent manner

Randolph J. Herber herber at dcdrjh.fnal.gov
Wed Jun 4 18:42:56 CEST 2003

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|Date: Wed, 04 Jun 2003 16:24:26 -0400
|From: William Adams <wadams at atlis.com>
|Subject: Re: [texhax] TeX -> PostScript, but in a resolution-independent manner
|To: texhax at tug.org
|Reply-to: wadams at atlis.com
|	<mailto:texhax-request at tug.org?subject=subscribe>
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|Because PostScript files require a PostScript interpreter, and can be
|quite complex, or dependent on things which aren't included in them.

|> Is there any reason for using PDF for things, which PostScript was
|> invented for?

|PostScript was created to describe pages to print. .pdf == ``portable
|document format'' and is more suited to display on screen or general
|use. It's also far easier to examine a .pdf for completeness &c.

|Take a look at www.planetpdf.com or www.pdfzone.com for more details on
|this sort of thing.

	There is a simpler, more practical reason.

	Adobe has consider revenue from selling licenses for their fonts.

	PostScript files very frequently incorporate the generotor's
	font preferences by including the Adobe font definitions.
	These definitions normally are extracted easily.  Adobe was
	losing money.

	PDF reduces the operations to a very simple low level which
	is sufficent to draw letters and images.  In this process,
	the font definitions are reduced to a form from which it is
	extremely difficult to recreate the original font definitions
	(similar to reconstructing a commented source program complete
	with reasonable variable names from a compiled object file
	without a debugging section).  In the process of doing this
	and a translation to a binary format (PostScript is basically
	ASCII text), the print files usually shrink by 50 to 75%.  Since
	the files have the _necessary_ information to draw the letters
	and images, the file is more portable than Postscript files
	which might assume the presence of the appropriate font
	definitions in the printer or other imaging device or program.

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Randolph J. Herber, herber at fnal.gov, +1 630 840 2966, CD/CDFTF PK-149F,
Mail Stop 318, Fermilab, Kirk & Pine Rds., PO Box 500, Batavia, IL 60510-0500,
USA.  (Speaking for myself and not for US, US DOE, FNAL nor URA.)  (Product,
trade, or service marks herein belong to their respective owners.)

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