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The Grumpy Editor's Guide to PDF Viewers

The Grumpy Editor's Guide to PDF Viewers

Posted Dec 9, 2004 10:19 UTC (Thu) by boson (guest, #23807)
Parent article: The Grumpy Editor's Guide to PDF Viewers

I am surprised that Grumpy Editor didn't notice (or am I getting functionally illiterate?) that xpdf supports hyperlinks in PDF files, while gv/ggv don't. This is a major issue in, for example, PDF presentations.

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The Grumpy Editor's Guide to PDF Viewers

Posted Dec 9, 2004 14:25 UTC (Thu) by forthy (guest, #1525) [Link]

Yes, using a PostScript viewer really doesn't count as PDF reader. Links
and bookmarks are important features of PDF. Hm, come to think, the way
LaTeX generates bookmarks and links through ps2pdf, you should be able to
have a PostScript viewer that has exactly the same features. Even features
like the yellow notes or annotations within the text (Acrobat) should be
possible with free software (and PostScript - at least the annotations,
not the yellow notes).

Things that also are important is how good it handles Type3 fonts. LaTeX
PDFs often come with these fonts (though cm-super provides all the EC
fonts). Acroread does a very poor job on these fonts, Ghostscript and xpdf
are much better. xpdf however has troubles with lineart graphics (no
antialiasing, looks very ugly).

The next on my list of issues is CJK handling. Acroread can only handle
CJK well in the 6.x version (i.e. not on Linux - and you have to
deliberately download the Chinese version), xpdf does it quite well, and
Ghostscript, too (once you have the -cjk tools installed). Why is this
important? Well, pdfs come from all over the world, and these Chinese guys
manage to put at least the one odd sign into their PDF. If this causes the
page to be rendered totally white (like in Acroread 5 or Ghostscript
without -cjk), it's not acceptable.

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