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Old 12-26-2006, 11:47 PM   #1
alex_d
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PDFrasterFarian Development Thread

Editor's Note: These files have been blocked from being downloaded because it has been brought to our attention that the application as it currently exists includes an expired trial version of commercial software.


NOTE:

The latest version can be found here:
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10402

--------------------------------------

This is a sister thread to this one. I'm posting the beta here to get feedback before putting up the full version on the other thread. Please don't be shy about any comments, suggestions, or frank explanations about how it's all crap.


Features:
v2.0.0:
+Much better boldness enhancement (see pics in other thread)
+Quarters-of-a-page mode for even more readability
+UI overhaul
+Multithreading/multicore support
v2.1.0:
+Big speed improvement (...not really saying much...)
+Customizable defaults
+Better text quality using 'simple' processing
+No need for password stripping

Known issues:
+Currently, AutoImager must be installed for the new image enhancement to work. A copy of the installer is attached.
+Incompatible with some filename characters ( ')' and '&' )
+When autocropping, the original cropbox is ignored. If something is revealed that was hidden, autocropping will include it leading to a larger page than with autocropping disabled.
+Lastly, the color-reduction step doesn't quite output grayscale values 0, 85, 170, 255. Instead, it produces four palletized colors which merely come close. The Reader reinterprets these and the result sometimes is white backgrounds with slight dithering and (possibly) a slight reduction in text quality.


Todo (short and long term):
One-click profiles
Promptless batch operation
Support for rendering djvu and other formats
Somehow increase text weight at the PDF level not as an image filter
Ability to run several pdfrasterfarian instances at once
Improve performance (currently... 4 to 15 minutes per 100 pages on my 1-core athlon 64)
Make a gui (with manual cropping, and zoom fragments)

Suggestions on fixing any of these or other issues are, of course, greatly appreciated. (Note to the hackers: the image-processing steps are all neatly isolated in the kernel-*.cmd files.)

Last edited by alex_d; 08-10-2007 at 02:51 PM.
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Old 12-27-2006, 10:49 AM   #2
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Alex_d, could you please take a look to http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=9146 ? I think JAP doing the same but with few additional features ;-)
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Old 12-27-2006, 03:12 PM   #3
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lol. you could have REALLY told me about this a little sooner.

I must say i'm very impressed with the interface (something I put a lot of value in), but the program is missing all the boldness and sharpness enhancements to text of PDFrasterFarian. Second, the images it produces do not have the right resolution. Third, it keeps rotating "portrait" mode the wrong way so you can't really use portrait at all and it splits up landscape into multiple pages, which is unnecessary. Fourth, you're using lossy jpeg, aren't you? Lastly, it doesn't seem to autocrop each page individually. It crops one page and then makes every other (even/odd) page the same (not true autocropping).

For now, PDFrasterFarian gives MUCH better results, but I really hope our two efforts could be combined!


P.S. I'm russian speaking myself, but have been living in america for a while. Could I ask why does it seem that the biggest community of Sony Reader hackers is in Russia? You guys cant even order them, and I'd guess all but the noviye ruskiye wouldn't want to spend as much as on a computer on a device that only reads books. Then again, I don't have much money either and felt this was the right purchase.

Last edited by alex_d; 12-27-2006 at 04:18 PM.
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Old 12-27-2006, 03:28 PM   #4
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I can't wait till this is a bit more mature and easy to install/run. Not being able to read PDFs has been one of the disappointments about the Sony Reader, so to hear that it can be remedied is awesome.

Was wondering about a few things in terms of the program so far:
(Forgive me if these are repetitive because I've missed the answers in the threads somewhere.)

1) When splitting into Landscape mode 2 pages per pdf page, what happens if a line falls exactly at the split point? Is there an overlapping portion in the middle?
2) Are there simple install instructions somewhere, and what needs to be installed in addition to the program? I saw AutoImager mentioned... is there anything else?
3) Is this is for Windows?
4) Is the average pdf page readable (albeit pretty small, so I'd have to use my glasses) in landscape mode now?

BTW, that would be awesome if the two of you could find a good way to combine efforts and get the best of both worlds! Thanks for the great contribution you are making for all of us!
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Old 12-27-2006, 03:38 PM   #5
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Bob, could you please elaborate on the problems have with installing/running? I know v1 was quite confusing, but what are your impressions of v2? I really hope you could give feedback so that I could clear up any confusions in the UI.

ok, to answer your questions
1) Landscape mode gives a generous overlap of almost 20%. This is the same as if you rotated a pdf file. Quarters mode lets you adjust the overlap.
2) You need AutoImager and Adobe Reader (which I'm sure you already have). I plan that AutoImager won't be needed soon. The install instructions are very simple. Double-click 'install'. It explains a few things. What it says is that after installation, you can right-click any PDF in Explorer and there'll be a 'PDFrasterFarian' option.
3) Yes, it only works on Windows (2k/xp/vista).
4) Yes. With the new image enhancement of v2, the average page is even readable in portrait. Landscape you should find very comfortable.

Last edited by alex_d; 12-27-2006 at 05:48 PM.
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Old 12-27-2006, 04:45 PM   #6
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Thanks for the info Alex!

Sorry, I wasn't being clear enough - actually, I'm trying to avoid being the early adopter on this one... I haven't tried to install. So as far as I know at this point, it works perfectly! ;-)

But looking forward to doing that install, I was wondering how that works, but your answers clear that up for me.

In fact, that additional info makes me all the more interested in trying it. If I get a block of time when I'm feeling adventurous, I may go ahead and try it. It would be really great to get this improved readability of pdfs. It's quite exciting actually.
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Old 12-27-2006, 09:59 PM   #7
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PDFRasterFarian 2.0.1 beta 1

Alex,

I have been using earlier versions of PDFRasterFarian. I appreciate very much your continuing development of the program. For version 2, I came across the following problems:

1. I used all defaults in the conversion and tried to preview the first page, but there was an error message saying that
C:\Program Files\PDFRasterFarian 2.0.1 beta 1\temp\preview.png not found

2. I then ignored the error message and continued the process. Subsequently, the program hang when it rasterized the second page.

Hopefully, you can locate the problem and fix it. Thank you.

KSC




Quote:
Originally Posted by alex_d
This is a sister thread to this one. I'm posting the beta here to get feedback before putting up the full version on the other thread. Please don't be shy about any comments, suggestions, or frank explanations about how it's all crap.

New features:
Much better boldness enhancement (see pics in other thread)
Quarters-of-a-page mode for even more readability
UI overhaul
Multithreading/multicore support
One-click profiles (not yet implemented in beta 1)
Promptless batch operation (not yet implemented in beta 1)


Known issues:
Currently, AutoImager must be installed for the new image enhancement to work. Tips for another (free) program that can do grayscale dilation (or something better) are appreciated. My good friend ImageMagick is failing me here.
Also, only choice 1 works in the installer as of beta 1
Lastly, the color-reduction step doesn't quite output grayscale values 0, 85, 170, 255. Instead, it produces four palletized colors which merely come close. The Reader reinterprets these and the result sometimes is white backgrounds with slight dithering and (possibly) a reduction in text quality.

fixed (from 2.0.0):
Issue with ToC

Todo (short and long term):
Get the one-click/promptless thing to work
Support for rendering djvu and other formats
Somehow increase text weight at the PDF level not as an image filter
Bundle an applet for manual cropping
Ability to run several pdfrasterfarian instances at once
Somehow make things faster (on my 2.4ghz 1-core athlon pc, it takes 10-35 minutes per 100 pages, depending on options)

Suggestions on fixing any of these or other issues are, of course, greatly appreciated. (Note to the tweakers: the image-processing steps are all neatly isolated in the kernel-*.cmd files.)
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Old 12-27-2006, 10:27 PM   #8
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kschan, did you install AutoImager? (link in op) You'll need this to use the new imaging mode, or else it'll give that error. You can also try going into Advanced mode and using 'simple' post-processing, which works the same as v1.0 and doesn't need anything. Let me know if either of those two things work. p.s. could you remove the enormous quote?

I'm happy you've found my script useful Thanks for the feedback.

Last edited by alex_d; 12-27-2006 at 10:55 PM.
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Old 12-28-2006, 03:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alex_d
P.S. I'm russian speaking myself, but have been living in america for a while. Could I ask why does it seem that the biggest community of Sony Reader hackers is in Russia?
Alex, come down. I'm not from Russia, I live in Boston for... nn years :-) But actually I'm Russian & speak Russian. You could join a Russian ebook-community (if you want) at www.the-ebook.org and we should talk about some progress in eBook-ing the World :-) (sorry, admins, it's not a "braindrain"; I think we should cooperate) Nevermind :-)

P.S. Alex, pics will come tomorrow...
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Old 12-28-2006, 04:28 AM   #10
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i'm russian speaking... not quite russian writing, lol

still, i'm sure most people from that site do live in russia. and that site almost seems bigger than mobileread. i just find it odd.
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Old 12-28-2006, 06:26 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeNS
You could join a Russian ebook-community (if you want) at www.the-ebook.org and we should talk about some progress in eBook-ing the World :-) (sorry, admins, it's not a "braindrain"; I think we should cooperate) Nevermind :-)
No worries, SeNS.. we feel the same way. Cooperation is good for everyone.
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Old 12-29-2006, 02:12 PM   #12
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file output error

Running Windows XP


: c:\inetpub\law.lfr
Too many arguments in command line.


!!!!ERROR: Output file cannot be written to!

c:\inetpub\law.lfr.lrf


Possible causes include:
invalid filename
the file is already open
insufficient permissions
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Old 12-29-2006, 02:35 PM   #13
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simple mode issue

in simple mode

Preparing...
Too many arguments in command line.

this section appears to be responsible:

ECHO.
ECHO Preparing...
"%relpath%software\pdftk.exe" "%inputFile%" dump_data output "%relpath%temp\doc_data.txt"
FOR /F "tokens=1-9" %%A in ('call more "%relpath%temp\doc_data.txt"') DO IF "%%A"=="NumberOfPages:" SET numPages=%%B
"%relpath%software\pdftk.exe" "%inputFile%" burst output "%relpath%\temp\stage1\%%04d" drop_xfa
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Old 12-29-2006, 04:40 PM   #14
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Alex, thanks for making this, it is truly the most useful tool for this device.
I had been trying to take roughly the same steps in acrobat pro to increase legibility, but this is certainly much better.
some observations: I was getting an error while doing the preview step and it was halting while rasterizing the second page, but lack of AutoImager explains it.
Parenthesis and some other characters in the file name cause the command window to close immediately after launching.
Version 2 with the autoimager option is a big improvement and I have had success with some difficult documents, including those converted from djvu to pdf, and those with cyrillic text (which is usually smaller and less legible than latin characters)
Thanks all for a great site
j
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Old 12-29-2006, 06:14 PM   #15
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Alex,

Many thanks for your hints. Indeed, I forgot to install autoimager. I'm on travel now and it is hard to download autoimager via phone line (which is what I have now!) I'll try it again after getting a fast link to internet.

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