Definition of PDF (Re: A misconception regarding the PDF format (Re: Text processing in Unicode)

rajam rajam at EARTHLINK.NET
Sat Mar 27 03:08:23 UTC 2010

sorry, I meant to say "Portable Document Format" not "Printable  
Document Format" as the expansion of PDF. Please make a note.


On Mar 26, 2010, at 4:27 PM, rajam wrote:

> Just wanted to make sure that we understand the principle behind  
> the acronym PDF ( "Printable Document Format").
> So, if we want to have a searchable PDF, we should ask the powers  
> that are in the IT industry to develop something like an  
> "SPDF" ("Searchable Printable Document Format").
> Hope you can understand what I mean.
> Best,
> --vsr
> (<>)
> On Mar 26, 2010, at 2:33 PM, rajam wrote:
>> PDF documents are searchable--but we have to abide by the rules of  
>> the PDF technology or we should device our own technique to get  
>> around them.
>> We need to respect the technology (PDF or other) which has its own  
>> characteristics as any other software in the industry.
>> I agree with JLC that PDF files are "E-paper" and the format was  
>> not "primarily invented for being a text storage format and it has  
>> never been guaranteed that round-trip conversions is always  
>> possible between PDF files and text files."
>> I'd like to add that expecting something "post-inventional" won't  
>> help us unless we do something about it -- for example, tell the  
>> creators/inventors of the software what we want to see the  
>> software do for us now or in the future. That's why the IT world  
>> has "tech support" departments and "feedback" channels.
>> Most importantly, I feel that our wishes like this one (that PDF  
>> documents should "be searchable") would be more effective if we  
>> direct them to the IT industry (for example to Adobe or any PDF  
>> developers) rather than expressing them only here in an academic  
>> forum as if we are just complaining about technology.
>> --vsr
>> (<>)
>> On Mar 26, 2010, at 7:16 AM, George Hart wrote:
>>> I have been playing around with unicode in both Tamil and  
>>> Devanagari.  On the Mac (Snow Leopard), it is not possible to  
>>> search pdf's in either writing system -- nor is it possible to  
>>> use Acrobat to export such files into rtf or other editable  
>>> format.  Using Nisus on the Mac, searching works perfectly for  
>>> both writing systems, and Rajam's problem does not appear.  Many  
>>> documents are available as pdf's, and it is quite important that  
>>> they be searchable.  Unfortunately, that is not the case at this  
>>> point with at least two important Indic writing systems.  George  
>>> Hart

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