|Lots of things are happening with ACM TOPLAS firstname.lastname@example.org (1997-03-31)|
|Re: Lots of things are happening with ACM TOPLAS email@example.com (Henry Spencer) (1997-04-02)|
|Re: Lots of things are happening with ACM TOPLAS firstname.lastname@example.org (1997-04-06)|
|Re: Lots of things are happening with ACM TOPLAS email@example.com (1997-04-18)|
|From:||Henry Spencer <firstname.lastname@example.org>|
|Date:||2 Apr 1997 16:04:45 -0500|
|Organization:||SP Systems, Toronto|
ACM TOPLAS <email@example.com> wrote:
> The full text of almost all ACM TOPLAS articles from 1991 on is
> now on-line in PDF format...
Apologies for venting of spleen in a public forum, but this concerns
all of us...
Couldn't ACM, of all organizations, have the decency and common sense
to use a non-proprietary data format? Even PostScript (Level 1,
please!) is far more widely understood than PDF.
Yes, I realize that PDF is *theoretically* an open format, but its
great complexity, the variety of image formats, and patent issues with
some of its data-compression algorithms make it very difficult to
write software that fully understands it. Even the 200-page PDF
Reference Manual does not tell you everything you need for a full
implementation. There are one or two redistributable PDF readers, but
my experience so far has been very mixed -- they handle some documents
poorly or not at all. The binaries that Adobe hands out are useless
if your working environment isn't one of the handful of systems that
they compile for.
I suppose we should count our blessings. It could have been Microsoft
Word format. Probably next year it will be; after all, if you're
going to use a proprietary format, why not use the most popular one?
Et tu, ACM?
| Henry Spencer
[ACM generally permits copying for non-commercial purposes, so maybe we
should put up a Postscript-ized mirror. -John]
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