Reading PDF - a cry for help

Richmond Mathewson richmondmathewson at gmail.com
Thu Sep 29 09:18:24 CDT 2011


Well. . . I just set up a new stack (on Linux!) and imported a PDF as a 
text file, and ended up
with a text field of gobbledegook . . .

BUT, at least the ting imports PDF files; ALL (!!!!!!!) one has to do 
then . . . [rather you than me, mate] . . . is knock together a set of 
algorhythms to convert the PDF file into readable text, strip out 
control chars, read formatting signs, and so on.

This is probably total crap; just a thought based on the realisation 
that Livecode can import any file as TEXT.

On 09/29/2011 05:01 PM, Graham Samuel wrote:
> Folks, for some months now (it seems even longer) I have been seeking a solution to the problem of reading PDF-formatted images into Livecode stacks. What I'm looking for is solution that  looks like an 'import paint' command: in other words, I want to be able to load a small subset of the possible contents of a PDF - just bitmap images - into a stack via script. Sadly I want to do this on a PC, running at a minimum Windows XP. My users want a simple solution that makes reading from a PDF no more complicated than reading a JPG.
>
> I have explored several possibilities, including using a 'free' PDF reader that is somehow hidden from the user of my app, and using say 'shell' to control it and to pass an image to LiveCode. However I have not found a realistic way of doing this, particularly when I include the need to have a very simple installation process - the user should not see any additional application, nor be obliged to provide substantial additional resources, as would be true for example if one used ImageMagick in this way in a PC context.
>
> Short of RunRev itself extending input formats to include PDF (not impossible, but not likely in the short term), the solution would seem to be to licence a third-party library component and integrate it into my app by the use of bridging ('glue') code. I got pretty near with this one, having identified a component with suitable licensing terms and functionality (Sorax DLL). RunRev suggested that I could do the gluing with the aid of a 'C' programmer. It turns out after a lot of research by Thierry Douez, who has been helping me, that what I need is a person familiar with Visual Studio to accomplish this - but I despair of finding such a person who would also be familiar with the externals interface of the LiveCode engine. Maybe I will find such a person, but the trail does seem to have gone cold.
>
> Has anyone any suggestion as to how I might proceed? My app works so nicely with JPG and PNG files, and I have (a little) belief that I could make it work with TIFF files, but without PDF input I am dead in the water.
>
> TIA
>
> Graham
>
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