sharing documents: in praise of PDF

Dominik Wujastyk ucgadkw at UCL.AC.UK
Sun Jan 13 01:48:13 UTC 2002

If a word processor can print to a PostScript printer, that is as good as
PDF.  If you "print to file", you get your document on disk as a .PS file.
Be sure to set the appropriate "print to file" option to "download soft
fonts" or the equivalent, so that all the fonts you use get included in
your file.

That file should faithfully reproduce what you get when you print your
documents normally.

The .PS file can be shared with colleagues in very much the same way as
PDF files.  To view a Postscript file on your screen, you need Ghostview
(Gsview, which itself needs Ghostscript).  This is available free, and
works on a wide variety of computers.  It is very similar to the Adobe
Acrobat Reader, but for Postscript.  Actually, Ghostview displays PDFs
too.  And it can also read in a PS file and "save as" PDF.  So you can, in
fact, make your PDFs this way, if you want to send a file to a colleague
with Acrobat, but no Ghostscript.

Gsview etc. are at

In short, if your equipment can print Postscript, they you can make files
that look exactly as you print them locally, with your diacritics, Nagari,
Tamil (hi, George!), etc., that and will be displayed as such on your
colleagues' screens and printers.  All this can be done with free


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