Re: Word attachment...on linuxtoday


On Sat, 2002-01-12 at 13:34, Franck Martin wrote:


> The drawback of PDF is that you need a proprietary software to convert
> your document into PDF. I think the FSF and GNU should think about a
> display/printing format free of any patent and widely published. I'm not
> sure if the format of PDF is open. Anyhow the limitation is that you
> have to acquire an Adobe licence to convert your files to PDF. In the
> old time in the Unix world many people were using compressed postcript
> to send documents, but this solution didn't make it to the windows world
> due to the obligation of buying a postscript viewer. There should be a
> FREE printer driver on windows and linux that print any document into a
> compressed format that can be viewed in a FREE reader.
> By the way PDF do not understand transparency it seems.

I'm pretty sure it does.

> In the latest technologies for e-books we see coming more proprietary
> format. I think it is time GNU do to documents what ogg vorbis did to
> mp3.
> I think you have a call for volunteers to make....

This may be said in ignorance, but isn't SVG a good substitute for PDF?

What Free Software (and Open Source Software) really needs, IMO, is
a good vector graphics engine.  Time and time again, you hear developers
wanting to use SVG in their GUIs.  (Myself being one of them.)  (Yes, I
know there is "librsvg", but it is not good enough.)

Being able to use a system, that supports the types of features found
in SVG, Flash (SWF), and PDF, would give User Interface designers
a rich set of tools to build applications with greater degrees of 
usability, and better the user-experience.

Not to mention, it would improve the "eye-candy" you'd be able to give 
the user.  (And, yes, aesthetics is a very important part of the UI.)

Many people have been saying Apple is killing any change GNU/Linux has
with the desktop.  Well creating a good vector graphics engine could
put GNU/Linux back in the race.  (Not to mention that it would be easy
to implement Apple's Quartz2D stuff -- the Core Graphics stuff -- once
such a library existed.)

This would also make Linux (more?) source compatible with Apple.
(I.e., grab the GNUStep stuff, the [yet to be implemented] 
Linux-Quart2D-implementation, and some other stuff, and porting should
be a snap.)

As far as I know though, no one is developing a good and fast (Free)
vector graphics engine.  The only thing I know about is the SVG
component for Mozilla.  But I don't think this is a general rendering
engine.  I doubt it supports any kind of hardware acceleration or
assembly-language-optimization needed for a real high-performance
system.  (But correct me if I am wrong though.)

See ya

     Charles Iliya Krempeaux
     tnt @
     ckrempea @

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