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Re: [BOAI] Formats for electronic dissemination
From: Mike Brown <M.Brown AT liverpool.ac.uk>
And I have to strongly disagree ;-) >They can always use them as GIFs or JPEGs which is much handy and >easily downloadable and there is no special advantage being a PDF by >itself, Have you ever tried to assemble a journal article for dissemination using just GIFs or JPEGs? Take a look at this article: An investigation on filariasis in the Berau region (Inanwatan District, North-West New Guinea) (1.4MB pdf) http://filariasis.net/library/media/report_pdfs/spc/1957/spc_tpn_105.pdf and tell me it would be easier for non-IT literate people (99% of the auidence - unless it's an IT one :-)) to view it as a series of individual GIFs/JPEGs - rather than click on the link and for it to open in Acrobat Reader - just like a facsimile of the original printed report - across *all* platforms (UNIX, Mac, WinPC). Furthermore if the article is still protected by Copyright using PDF allows (should you desire) you to control access to the document - something you cannot do with GIFs/JPEGs. >there is no special advantage being a PDF I would suggest spending sometime with the PDF specification and an application such as Adobe Acrobat to see what you can do with PDF - did you know, for example, that the windowing system in Mac OS X uses PDF as the basis of its imaging model? http://www.apple.com/macosx/features/quartz/ >these are virtually impenetrable by data mining tools. This is not the fault of PDF - but the person who applies the technology - see my last e-mail on this subject. >Moreover, the print quality of many of these scanned PDFs are equally poor. Again, this is not the fault of PDF - but the person who applies the technology. The report I link to above (and all of the articles I have converted on filariasis.net) prints out a high quality - why? because it has a DPI of 300 - and not screen DPI of 72. Many Journals when converting their archives to PDF simply choose a low resolution either at the scan stage or conversion to PDF stage as it lowers the final size of the PDF - why? I think because: 1) smaller frootprint (less cost to produce and store) 2) smaller bandwith to transmit across a network (less costs to transmit) It's down to economics. The result, often, is poor quality printing. A further problem is that image quality in these pdfs is often very poor - making the images unreadable - and for us in the world of medicine - useless. So in short, it's not often the fault of a technology - is mostly the fault of a human using the technology inappropriately or being constrained by economic factors. Best wishes, Mike On Mon, 20 Oct 2003, Dr.Vinod Scaria wrote: >I agree to Radu's views. >I have always wondered why they convert page scans to PDFs. >They can always use them as GIFs or JPEGs which is much handy and easily >downloadable and there is no special advantage being a PDF by itself, as >Radu notes, these are virtually impenetrable by data mining tools. >Moreover, the print quality of many of these scanned PDFs are equally poor. > >kind regards >Vinod > > >Dr.Vinod Scaria >WEB: www.drvinod.netfirms.com >MAIL: vinodscaria AT yahoo.co.in >Mobile: +91 98474 65452 > > > >----- Original Message ----- >From: Radu >To: BOAI Forum >Sent: Wednesday, October 29, 2003 12:07 AM >Subject: Re: [BOAI] Formats for electronic dissemination > > >At 11:55 AM 10/27/03, Dario Taraborelli wrote: >>(I confess that I don't thoroughly understand the problem with pdf's, >>since pdf documents can be indexed by search engines as easily as html >>documents: it doesn't look like an insuperable technical problem). > >There's something else about archived pdfs, much worse than the relative >inaccessibility of the semantics for their content, and that's image-based >text. > >I have seen many journal archives which simply dump page scans into pdf >format. The resulting documents are huge and totally impenetrable by >current classification/data mining tools. It's even impossible to >copy/paste text out of these 'archives'. > > >Yours, >Radu >-- >Eastcree.org project >Carleton University >www.monicsoft.net/proj/creeTime.html >(613) 520-2600x2174 > > >
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