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Re: [hackers-il] Digital Whisper issue #1

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  • Omer Zak
    In my opinion, PDF format is a fine choice, and I d advise it to be first choice for fully sighted people. For people with special needs, do provide also a
    Message 1 of 13 , Oct 4, 2009
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      In my opinion, PDF format is a fine choice, and I'd advise it to be
      first choice for fully sighted people.
      For people with special needs, do provide also a HTML/XHTML version, as
      suggested by Shlomi.

      --- Omer


      On Sat, 2009-10-03 at 20:02 +0200, Shlomi Fish wrote:
      > On Saturday 03 Oct 2009 18:09:30 Moshe Ben Abu wrote:
      > > Thanks for the feedback, I've sent it to the authors.
      > > What kind of format you suggest the magazine should be..?
      > >
      >
      > HTML or XHTML preferably. Possibly with some help from CSS, MathML, SVG, PNG,
      > etc.
      >
      > Note that you can create the magazine in various formats (including XHTML ,
      > PDF and even MS Word) using such technologies as:
      >
      > http://www.shlomifish.org/philosophy/computers/web/choice-of-docs-formats/
      >
      > Regards,
      >
      > Shlomi Fish
      >
      --
      "Kosher" Cellphones (cellphones with blocked SMS, video and Internet)
      are menace to the deaf. They must be outlawed!
      (See also: http://www.zak.co.il/tddpirate/2006/04/21/the-grave-danger-to-the-deaf-from-kosher-cellphones/ and http://www.zak.co.il/tddpirate/2007/02/04/rabbi-eliashiv-declared-war-on-the-deaf/)
      My own blog is at http://www.zak.co.il/tddpirate/

      My opinions, as expressed in this E-mail message, are mine alone.
      They do not represent the official policy of any organization with which
      I may be affiliated in any way.
      WARNING TO SPAMMERS: at http://www.zak.co.il/spamwarning.html
    • Dotan Cohen
      ... I actually think that PDF is great. It is freely available, preserves formatting across OS / applications, and is contained in a single file ([X]HTML is
      Message 2 of 13 , Oct 4, 2009
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        > 1. Why are the articles in PDF format? PDF suffers from poor accessibility,
        > inconvenience, low ability to be hacked and re-used, and other problems.
        > I don't have a PDF viewer configured in my browser, and when clicking on the
        > link, one of them was downloaded to my hard-disk, and I am too inconvenienced
        > to open it using a PDF viewer.
        >

        I actually think that PDF is great. It is freely available, preserves
        formatting across OS / applications, and is contained in a single file
        ([X]HTML is not). Is is searchable and the text is extractable. Is is
        also accessible to the disabled, though Linux support for that feature
        may be missing (a problem with Linux applications, not with PDF
        itself). There are RTL issues with PDF though.


        >> If anyone is willing to contribute, submit an article or give a feedback,
        >> contact Digital Whisper crew here - editor@...
        >>
        >

        When I get around to it!

        --
        Dotan Cohen

        http://what-is-what.com
        http://gibberish.co.il
      • Shlomi Fish
        ... Why? Show me your reasons! In the previous message, I ve given several reasons for its problematic nature:
        Message 3 of 13 , Oct 4, 2009
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          On Sunday 04 Oct 2009 09:42:06 Omer Zak wrote:
          > In my opinion, PDF format is a fine choice, and I'd advise it to be
          > first choice for fully sighted people.

          Why? Show me your reasons! In the previous message, I've given several reasons
          for its problematic nature:

          <<<<<<<<<<<<<
          1. Why are the articles in PDF format? PDF suffers from poor accessibility,
          inconvenience, low ability to be hacked and re-used, and other problems.
          I don't have a PDF viewer configured in my browser, and when clicking on the
          link, one of them was downloaded to my hard-disk, and I am too inconvenienced
          to open it using a PDF viewer.
          >>>>>>>>>>>>>

          Please offer a rebuttal for them.

          > For people with special needs, do provide also a HTML/XHTML version, as
          > suggested by Shlomi.

          I am not sight-impaired but I also prefer HTML/XHTML due to the advantages
          above. A PDF version unnecessarily inconveniences me.

          Regards,

          Shlomi Fish

          >
          > --- Omer
          >
          > On Sat, 2009-10-03 at 20:02 +0200, Shlomi Fish wrote:
          > > On Saturday 03 Oct 2009 18:09:30 Moshe Ben Abu wrote:
          > > > Thanks for the feedback, I've sent it to the authors.
          > > > What kind of format you suggest the magazine should be..?
          > >
          > > HTML or XHTML preferably. Possibly with some help from CSS, MathML, SVG,
          > > PNG, etc.
          > >
          > > Note that you can create the magazine in various formats (including XHTML
          > > , PDF and even MS Word) using such technologies as:
          > >
          > > http://www.shlomifish.org/philosophy/computers/web/choice-of-docs-formats
          > >/
          > >
          > > Regards,
          > >
          > > Shlomi Fish
          >

          --
          -----------------------------------------------------------------
          Shlomi Fish http://www.shlomifish.org/
          Optimising Code for Speed - http://shlom.in/optimise

          Chuck Norris read the entire English Wikipedia in 24 hours. Twice.
        • Shlomi Fish
          ... The latter can be solved using solutions such as .zip or tar.gz or a CHM : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Compiled_HTML_Help Also, you can always
          Message 4 of 13 , Oct 5, 2009
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            On Sunday 04 Oct 2009 13:09:51 Dotan Cohen wrote:
            > > 1. Why are the articles in PDF format? PDF suffers from poor
            > > accessibility, inconvenience, low ability to be hacked and re-used, and
            > > other problems. I don't have a PDF viewer configured in my browser, and
            > > when clicking on the link, one of them was downloaded to my hard-disk,
            > > and I am too inconvenienced to open it using a PDF viewer.
            >
            > I actually think that PDF is great. It is freely available, preserves
            > formatting across OS / applications, and is contained in a single file
            > ([X]HTML is not).

            The latter can be solved using solutions such as .zip or tar.gz or a CHM :

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Compiled_HTML_Help

            Also, you can always put the HTML you want under a certain path on the server
            and use mirroring tools. So it's a solved problem.

            > Is is searchable and the text is extractable.

            It is not as searchable as HTML or XML is, and the text is not easily
            extractable if there is fancy formatting or layout. And not all FOSS PDF
            viewers have adequate mechanisms for it.

            > Is is
            > also accessible to the disabled, though Linux support for that feature
            > may be missing (a problem with Linux applications, not with PDF
            > itself).

            It's much less accessible to the disabled than XHTML is.

            > There are RTL issues with PDF though.
            >

            Big RTL issues.

            Nevertheless, by using DocBook/XML and other tools one can easily generate
            both XHTML and PDF output. And you can convert XHTML to PDF too using the
            print-to-file function of the browsers.

            Regards,

            Shlomi Fish

            > >> If anyone is willing to contribute, submit an article or give a
            > >> feedback, contact Digital Whisper crew here -
            > >> editor@...
            >
            > When I get around to it!
            >

            --
            -----------------------------------------------------------------
            Shlomi Fish http://www.shlomifish.org/
            Parody on "The Fountainhead" - http://shlom.in/towtf

            Chuck Norris read the entire English Wikipedia in 24 hours. Twice.
          • Budilovsky Evgeny
            Guys, I think we should take the phrack approach and publish our issues in plain text. Images can be replaced by ascii-art or in
            Message 5 of 13 , Oct 5, 2009
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              Guys,
              I think we should take the phrack approach and publish our issues in plain text. Images can be replaced by ascii-art or in special cases encoded in base64 and embedded in the text. This will probably solve the formats wars since no one can argue that simple ascii text is not supported by it's system.

              P.S.
              Thanks for the great issue. In case you stick with the pdf format is it possible to make links click-able from the pdf this will save the copy-paste from the foxit reader to the firefox.

              Best regards,
              Evgeny

              On Mon, Oct 5, 2009 at 4:25 PM, Shlomi Fish <shlomif@...> wrote:
              On Sunday 04 Oct 2009 13:09:51 Dotan Cohen wrote:
              > > 1. Why are the articles in PDF format? PDF suffers from poor
              > > accessibility, inconvenience, low ability to be hacked and re-used, and
              > > other problems. I don't have a PDF viewer configured in my browser, and
              > > when clicking on the link, one of them was downloaded to my hard-disk,
              > > and I am too inconvenienced to open it using a PDF viewer.
              >
              > I actually think that PDF is great. It is freely available, preserves
              > formatting across OS / applications, and is contained in a single file
              > ([X]HTML is not).

              The latter can be solved using solutions such as .zip or tar.gz or a CHM :

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Compiled_HTML_Help

              Also, you can always put the HTML you want under a certain path on the server
              and use mirroring tools. So it's a solved problem.

              > Is is searchable and the text is extractable.

              It is not as searchable as HTML or XML is, and the text is not easily
              extractable if there is fancy formatting or layout. And not all FOSS PDF
              viewers have adequate mechanisms for it.

              > Is is
              > also accessible to the disabled, though Linux support for that feature
              > may be missing (a problem with Linux applications, not with PDF
              > itself).

              It's much less accessible to the disabled than XHTML is.

              > There are RTL issues with PDF though.
              >

              Big RTL issues.

              Nevertheless, by using DocBook/XML and other tools one can easily generate
              both XHTML and PDF output. And you can convert XHTML to PDF too using the
              print-to-file function of the browsers.

              Regards,

                     Shlomi Fish

              > >> If anyone is willing to contribute, submit an article or give a
              > >> feedback, contact Digital Whisper crew here -
              > >> editor@...
              >
              > When I get around to it!
              >

              --
              -----------------------------------------------------------------
              Shlomi Fish       http://www.shlomifish.org/
              Parody on "The Fountainhead" - http://shlom.in/towtf

              Chuck Norris read the entire English Wikipedia in 24 hours. Twice.


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            • Shlomi Fish
              ... Was that a joke? ASCII Art is very inaccessible too, and usually looks horrible. And plaintext is incredibly non-aesthetic. You can easily convert XHTML to
              Message 6 of 13 , Oct 6, 2009
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                On Monday 05 Oct 2009 22:21:19 Budilovsky Evgeny wrote:
                > Guys,
                > I think we should take the phrack <http://www.phrack.org/> approach and
                > publish our issues in plain text. Images can be replaced by ascii-art or in
                > special cases encoded in base64 and embedded in the text. This will
                > probably solve the formats wars since no one can argue that simple ascii
                > text is not supported by it's system.

                Was that a joke? ASCII Art is very inaccessible too, and usually looks
                horrible. And plaintext is incredibly non-aesthetic. You can easily convert
                XHTML to PDF or plaintext. And if you ask me, even PDF is better than
                plaintext. Plaintext would look incredibly unprofessional, and would indicate
                a bad laziness on your part. Let's not go there.

                Let's not end up with the copper because we cannot decide between the silver
                and the gold.

                Regards,

                Shlomi Fish

                >
                > P.S.
                > Thanks for the great issue. In case you stick with the pdf format is it
                > possible to make links click-able from the pdf this will save the
                > copy-paste from the foxit reader to the firefox.
                >
                > Best regards,
                > Evgeny
                >
                > On Mon, Oct 5, 2009 at 4:25 PM, Shlomi Fish <shlomif@...> wrote:
                > > On Sunday 04 Oct 2009 13:09:51 Dotan Cohen wrote:
                > > > > 1. Why are the articles in PDF format? PDF suffers from poor
                > > > > accessibility, inconvenience, low ability to be hacked and re-used,
                > > > > and other problems. I don't have a PDF viewer configured in my
                > > > > browser, and when clicking on the link, one of them was downloaded to
                > > > > my hard-disk, and I am too inconvenienced to open it using a PDF
                > > > > viewer.
                > > >
                > > > I actually think that PDF is great. It is freely available, preserves
                > > > formatting across OS / applications, and is contained in a single file
                > > > ([X]HTML is not).
                > >
                > > The latter can be solved using solutions such as .zip or tar.gz or a CHM
                > > :
                > >
                > > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Compiled_HTML_Help
                > >
                > > Also, you can always put the HTML you want under a certain path on the
                > > server
                > > and use mirroring tools. So it's a solved problem.
                > >
                > > > Is is searchable and the text is extractable.
                > >
                > > It is not as searchable as HTML or XML is, and the text is not easily
                > > extractable if there is fancy formatting or layout. And not all FOSS PDF
                > > viewers have adequate mechanisms for it.
                > >
                > > > Is is
                > > > also accessible to the disabled, though Linux support for that feature
                > > > may be missing (a problem with Linux applications, not with PDF
                > > > itself).
                > >
                > > It's much less accessible to the disabled than XHTML is.
                > >
                > > > There are RTL issues with PDF though.
                > >
                > > Big RTL issues.
                > >
                > > Nevertheless, by using DocBook/XML and other tools one can easily
                > > generate both XHTML and PDF output. And you can convert XHTML to PDF too
                > > using the print-to-file function of the browsers.
                > >
                > > Regards,
                > >
                > > Shlomi Fish
                > >
                > > > >> If anyone is willing to contribute, submit an article or give a
                > > > >> feedback, contact Digital Whisper crew here -
                > > > >> editor@...
                > > >
                > > > When I get around to it!
                > >
                > > --
                > > -----------------------------------------------------------------
                > > Shlomi Fish http://www.shlomifish.org/
                > > Parody on "The Fountainhead" - http://shlom.in/towtf
                > >
                > > Chuck Norris read the entire English Wikipedia in 24 hours. Twice.
                > >
                > >
                > > ------------------------------------
                > >
                > > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >

                --
                -----------------------------------------------------------------
                Shlomi Fish http://www.shlomifish.org/
                Best Introductory Programming Language - http://shlom.in/intro-lang

                Chuck Norris read the entire English Wikipedia in 24 hours. Twice.
              • Micha Feigin
                On Sun, 04 Oct 2009 17:47:06 +0200 ... With PDF you assure format and don t have math and font issues With a PDF version I can more easily archive the article
                Message 7 of 13 , Oct 6, 2009
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                  On Sun, 04 Oct 2009 17:47:06 +0200
                  Shlomi Fish <shlomif@...> wrote:

                  > On Sunday 04 Oct 2009 09:42:06 Omer Zak wrote:
                  > > In my opinion, PDF format is a fine choice, and I'd advise it to be
                  > > first choice for fully sighted people.
                  >
                  > Why? Show me your reasons! In the previous message, I've given several reasons
                  > for its problematic nature:
                  >

                  > <<<<<<<<<<<<<
                  > 1. Why are the articles in PDF format? PDF suffers from poor accessibility,
                  > inconvenience, low ability to be hacked and re-used, and other problems.
                  > I don't have a PDF viewer configured in my browser, and when clicking on the
                  > link, one of them was downloaded to my hard-disk, and I am too inconvenienced
                  > to open it using a PDF viewer.
                  > >>>>>>>>>>>>>
                  >
                  > Please offer a rebuttal for them.
                  >

                  With PDF you assure format and don't have math and font issues

                  With a PDF version I can more easily archive the article and print it

                  You can always use open with instead of save to open the article in a pdf viewer

                  > > For people with special needs, do provide also a HTML/XHTML version, as
                  > > suggested by Shlomi.
                  >
                  > I am not sight-impaired but I also prefer HTML/XHTML due to the advantages
                  > above. A PDF version unnecessarily inconveniences me.

                  Personally for light reading I like html for serious papers pdf is much better.

                  >
                  > Regards,
                  >
                  > Shlomi Fish
                  >
                  > >
                  > > --- Omer
                  > >
                  > > On Sat, 2009-10-03 at 20:02 +0200, Shlomi Fish wrote:
                  > > > On Saturday 03 Oct 2009 18:09:30 Moshe Ben Abu wrote:
                  > > > > Thanks for the feedback, I've sent it to the authors.
                  > > > > What kind of format you suggest the magazine should be..?
                  > > >
                  > > > HTML or XHTML preferably. Possibly with some help from CSS, MathML, SVG,
                  > > > PNG, etc.
                  > > >
                  > > > Note that you can create the magazine in various formats (including XHTML
                  > > > , PDF and even MS Word) using such technologies as:
                  > > >
                  > > > http://www.shlomifish.org/philosophy/computers/web/choice-of-docs-formats
                  > > >/
                  > > >
                  > > > Regards,
                  > > >
                  > > > Shlomi Fish
                  > >
                  >
                • Micha Feigin
                  On Mon, 05 Oct 2009 16:25:51 +0200 ... I find that to generally be seriously broken
                  Message 8 of 13 , Oct 6, 2009
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                    On Mon, 05 Oct 2009 16:25:51 +0200
                    Shlomi Fish <shlomif@...> wrote:

                    > On Sunday 04 Oct 2009 13:09:51 Dotan Cohen wrote:
                    > > > 1. Why are the articles in PDF format? PDF suffers from poor
                    > > > accessibility, inconvenience, low ability to be hacked and re-used, and
                    > > > other problems. I don't have a PDF viewer configured in my browser, and
                    > > > when clicking on the link, one of them was downloaded to my hard-disk,
                    > > > and I am too inconvenienced to open it using a PDF viewer.
                    > >
                    > > I actually think that PDF is great. It is freely available, preserves
                    > > formatting across OS / applications, and is contained in a single file
                    > > ([X]HTML is not).
                    >
                    > The latter can be solved using solutions such as .zip or tar.gz or a CHM :
                    >
                    > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Compiled_HTML_Help
                    >
                    > Also, you can always put the HTML you want under a certain path on the server
                    > and use mirroring tools. So it's a solved problem.
                    >
                    > > Is is searchable and the text is extractable.
                    >
                    > It is not as searchable as HTML or XML is, and the text is not easily
                    > extractable if there is fancy formatting or layout. And not all FOSS PDF
                    > viewers have adequate mechanisms for it.
                    >
                    > > Is is
                    > > also accessible to the disabled, though Linux support for that feature
                    > > may be missing (a problem with Linux applications, not with PDF
                    > > itself).
                    >
                    > It's much less accessible to the disabled than XHTML is.
                    >
                    > > There are RTL issues with PDF though.
                    > >
                    >
                    > Big RTL issues.
                    >
                    > Nevertheless, by using DocBook/XML and other tools one can easily generate
                    > both XHTML and PDF output. And you can convert XHTML to PDF too using the
                    > print-to-file function of the browsers.
                    >

                    I find that to generally be seriously broken

                    > Regards,
                    >
                    > Shlomi Fish
                    >
                    > > >> If anyone is willing to contribute, submit an article or give a
                    > > >> feedback, contact Digital Whisper crew here -
                    > > >> editor@...
                    > >
                    > > When I get around to it!
                    > >
                    >
                  • Dotan Cohen
                    ... CHM is far from being a universally-available solution. No ebook reader can read it, and the choices for reading CHM files under Linux are slim.
                    Message 9 of 13 , Oct 9, 2009
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                      >> I actually think that PDF is great. It is freely available, preserves
                      >> formatting across OS / applications, and is contained in a single file
                      >> ([X]HTML is not).
                      >
                      > The latter can be solved using solutions such as .zip or tar.gz or a CHM :
                      >
                      > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Compiled_HTML_Help
                      >
                      > Also, you can always put the HTML you want under a certain path on the server
                      > and use mirroring tools. So it's a solved problem.
                      >

                      CHM is far from being a universally-available solution. No ebook
                      reader can read it, and the choices for reading CHM files under Linux
                      are slim. Furthermore, being HTML-based, there is no reference
                      implementation for formatting, so it will look different on every
                      device.


                      >> Is is searchable and the text is extractable.
                      >
                      > It is not as searchable as HTML or XML is, and the text is not easily
                      > extractable if there is fancy formatting or layout. And not all FOSS PDF
                      > viewers have adequate mechanisms for it.
                      >

                      So fix your FOSS software. This would need to be done anyway for CHM,
                      read the previous comment.


                      >> Is is
                      >> also accessible to the disabled, though Linux support for that feature
                      >> may be missing (a problem with Linux applications, not with PDF
                      >> itself).
                      >
                      > It's much less accessible to the disabled than XHTML is.
                      >

                      Please explain. PDF has disability features built into the document.
                      You might also want to read up on reflowing PDF documetns for
                      small-screen devices and screen readers.


                      >> There are RTL issues with PDF though.
                      >>
                      >
                      > Big RTL issues.
                      >

                      I take that back. There are RTL isues with FOSS PDF readers. Acrobat
                      on Vista seems to have all the RTL issues taken care of.


                      > Nevertheless, by using DocBook/XML and other tools one can easily generate
                      > both XHTML and PDF output. And you can convert XHTML to PDF too using the
                      > print-to-file function of the browsers.
                      >

                      This is a good point. Does the author want to give multiple options?


                      --
                      Dotan Cohen

                      http://what-is-what.com
                      http://gibberish.co.il
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