Read, display, modify, and write Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) files


Screen dump

Sample documents: digital document lectures (converted from PowerPoint), an early paper scanned in and converted with Adobe Capture (try the Lens / Show OCR), JavaOne slides, pdfTeX manual (generated by pdfTeX, without Adobe tools), Aida (generated by txt2pdf, without Adobe tools), link to named destination (similar to an HTML anchor).


Adobe's PDF has emerged as a extremely popular document format, a de facto standard alongside HTML. The Multivalent Browser can display PDFs like Acrobat and xpdf, with a couple limitations and some interesting differences.

PDFs can be annotated without Acrobat. These annotations are the same open-ended set of Multivalent annotations that are available on all document types (and thus they aren't written into the PDF). Some Multivalent annotations incrementally reformat the PDF to open up whitespace in the middle of text.

PDFs that were generated from scanned paper, such as the early paper mentioned above, which have OCR run on them can have be annotated and have the text copied out as in Acrobat. You can also use the Show OCR lens (under the Lens menu) to see the OCR translation in situ.

PDF named destinations, which are like HTML anchors, are supported. Furthermore, each page has an implicit named destionation called page=n. For example, click to directly view page 5.

A full screen slide show (under the Go menu, when viewing a PDF). (This slide show runs on all paginated document types, including TeX DVI and XDOC.)


Most features described in the 1021-page PDF Reference 1.5 manual (which corresponds to Acrobat 6) is supported, except for a few high-end, usually printing industry-oriented features. In general the random PDF document should look great.

Note that no use is made of the following features: linearization, thumbnails, article threads, slideshow settings, outline, structure / tagging.

See Also

Last update: $Date: 2003/12/18 11:20:11 $