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Old 02-27-2007, 07:08 AM   #1
adinb
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Device: Sony PRS-500, iPod Touch, iPhone
OSX "PDF Chopper" Workflow

I just finished up an automator workflow so that I could read the PDF edition of my local newspaper (12.5"x22"!!) on my eReader.

I found that converting *large* pdfs to JPEG at an aspect ratio at least *close* to that of the eReader means that you can actually read the text--though it means a little scrolling around to read articles. The files usually end up at 2075x1826, which makes for nice reading resolution in picture mode. The processed files all end up numbered in reading order in a "news" directory on the desktop.

The workflow takes a set of single page PDFs, rasterizes & converts them to jpeg at 166 DPI, and then chops the pages in half. (to get the aspect ratio close to the eReader). I use one "external" automator command, called "Propper Cropper" because the Apple supplied one always tries to center and crop.(WTF!?!)

Feel free to take this workflow ("process pdfs") and play with it. I ask that any improvements get posted back here, and if there's any demand I'll tidy it up and make it a proper applescript or somesuch. But if you customize it a bit, it'll work with Biblioskop--so that you can have a "windows free" way to chop and read large size pdf's from your Mac.

One reason I wrote this little ditty is that while I could find all kinds of software to split/combine pdfs (like PDFLab), I couldn't find anything that would do it for multipage or a large number of single page PDFs. If anyone knows of any apps for OSX that do this, please let me know. (Graphic Converter can do page splits/tiles one page at a time, but that's not available in its batch mode).

And an alibi, its late, automator has a lot of bugs, especially in the "make sequential" rename command, so please, no critiques of my script -- I'm a C++ guy just tryin' to read a frickin' newspaper.

note: if you turn on the "show action when run" option, it'll ask you for what directories to use....and I have the JPEG quality turned all the way up.

If there's any updates, I'll post here.

Process PDF .000001 Workflow


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