[XeTeX] XeTeX 0.995: large PDFs from excessive Tm (text matrix) operators?

Jonathan Kew jonathan_kew at sil.org
Mon Feb 12 11:14:00 CET 2007

On 12 Feb 2007, at 4:27 am, James Devenish wrote:
> If I typeset a phrase like "Hello there!", I get good behaviour from
> Apple Text Edit Print-to-PDF, pdfLaTeX and XeTeX (-no-pdf option).
> Basically, all these tools produce one "move to" command and
> one "text" command.
> However, xdv2pdf splits the words into individual characters and
> issues a "move to" every time. I wonder if this causes the PDFs to be
> so large. (The move-to co-ordinates probably don't compress well).
> Is there a way to avoid it? Since Text Edit gives a good result, I
> assume this is a problem wiht xdv2pdf, not Quartz.

I guess this happens because xdv2pdf uses a very low-level Quartz API  
(CGShowGlyphsWithAdvances) to draw the glyphs, as it wants precise  
control of the position of each. Where there is no kerning or other  
positional adjustment between adjacent glyphs, CGShowGlyphs might  
generate more compact output -- but by the time xdv2pdf is drawing  
glyphs, it doesn't know whether they are at their "natural" spacing  
or require adjustments, all it knows are the final positions to be used.

This could be changed, I guess, at the expense of doing extra work to  
figure out the default positioning of the glyphs and therefore  
whether any explicit positioning is needed.

What OS version are you running, incidentally?

> Also, I recently discovered xdvipdfmx but it usually crashes with my
> documents, so it cannot solve my problem yet.

It shouldn't "usually crash", and AFAIK it works well for some  
people; can you be more specific about the problems you've seen? In  
general, I'd rather put effort into further development of xdvipdfmx  
than xdv2pdf.


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