[tex-live] Re: incremental pdf (was: Please enable ipc in tex)

Gerben Wierda Gerben.Wierda at rna.nl
Mon Aug 2 14:48:30 CEST 2004

> This might be a little off-topic.
> Pdftex is a widely used program, which clearly meets the
> need to generate pdf files from tex sources.
> However, I never understood why pdftex was written, rather
> than a dvi to pdf translator.
> This may be a failing on my part, I simply don't remember
> seeing the reasons for this choice.
> The current wish for incremental pdf raises this question
> again, in my opinion.

It does not. If there was a dvipdf program (akin to dvips) one still would
have to compile the whole document to DVI before you woul dbe able to view
page one, if you use PDF as your viewer format (instead of DVI). Using PDF
as the viewer format is the natural choice on Mac OS X where PDF is the
native display format.

> Could anyone inform me, as to why pdftex rather than a
> dvi to pdf translator.

The above in case of some sort of per-page PDF. Or the dvipdf translator
would have to be able to read DVI page per page and produce PDF page per
page (in a pipe).


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