[LINK] PDF isn't all bad (was Estens report posted)
Mon, 11 Nov 2002 23:04:08 +1100
On 11 Nov 2002, Carl Makin wrote:
> On Mon, 2002-11-11 at 11:56, James Pearce wrote:
> > My complaints on PDF are the stupid size of the document, the inability to
> > cut and paste, and the inability to search the entire document. That may be
> > just a result of the system I'm using, but as far as I know it's universal.
[ Snip helpful sutff ]
> It also has a File->Find menu option letting you find within the
> document. Decent search engines like HTDIG do index inside PDFs if
> configured correctly.
However, it is possible to build PDFs that break this. Two examples off
the top of my head:
- PDF supports document level encryption, which will only encrypt the
text / image portions of the document, not the entire structure
- Because you can define your own characters sets, you can do evil
character remapping things to make life much harder. I.e map the 'A'
bitmap to the character 'Z', and then encode the PDF.
> Also, a PDF should be smaller than the corresponding word document in
> most situations unless lots of additional gumpf has been included such
> as large high quality images (ie 300dpi+) or fonts. Unfortunately a lot
> of this is enabled by default, especially in the windows versions of the
> acrobat distiller.
And PDF supports compression of all the interesting big bits...
Having written Word document, and PDF parsers, PDF is much sexier and more
sensible. Your word documents embed marshalled ActiveX documents, which is
why some embedded data doesn't always work, and you need to upgrade all
the time. I've heard rumors of an XML .doc file format coming to a machine
near you soon?
> PDF has lots of problems, but word documents have many more.
Michael Still (email@example.com) UTC +10 hours