Subject: RE: On PDFs
From: "Dick Margulis " <margulis -at- mail -dot- fiam -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 24 Apr 2003 14:20:38 -0400

Watson, that is a misunderstanding on your part, thanks to some confusing language from Adobe. (Hey, Acrobat is a great tool, but nobody ever said the documentation was usable.)

Reader plus Search is a version that allows you to do full-text and attribute searches of cataloged PDFs. This is what you need if there is a collection of PDFs in a directory structure and you need to search across documents.

What we have been talking about today is the standard Reader functionality of simple text searching with the binoculars tool (or with Ctrl-F if you are outside of the browser plug-in).

Both of these functions can fail for a variety of reasons. In some cases documents are created with fonts that are not encoded properly and cannot be searched. High-quality composition that involves ligatures and other expert characters cannot always be searched, because there are font changes within words. Some applications still"double-strike" characters (Word used to do this--maybe still does--if the Shadow attribute is turned on), resulting in aa pprroobblleemm for Acrobat. Some documents have text converted to images 9or just scanned images to begin with, with no actual text). Acrobat is not good with anything funky. But for the majority of documents, simple text searches work okay.


Watson Laughton <WLaughton -at- orphan -dot- com> wrote:

>If, as I have been told, the freebie AcroReader viewer (at least the _base_
>version; I understand that you can specify to add onto the download the
>ability to search PDFs, but this is not the default, and doesn't seem to be
>what most people have if they're using the free reader), that limits the
>utility of the format, no?

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