Well, here's a comparison of Evince 0.6.1 versus Adobe Reader 7. I think you can see the difference in the quality of the line art.
Very nice, thanks. That matches my own gut impressions: Adobe uses some very nice scaling and interpolation algorithms in its PDF viewers, not only on fonts but also on vector lines (as here) and on embedded bitmaps like scanned US patents. And they're reasonably fast at it, too. I can't tell if it's full multitap resampling, but...nice (to quote Borat).
I have no doubts free software will catch up before very long, though I am a little surprised we're not there already. (Different priorities, I guess. :-) )
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