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

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  • Micha Feigin
    On Mon, 05 Oct 2009 16:25:51 +0200 ... I find that to generally be seriously broken
    Message 1 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 2 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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