[texhax] Request for advice on figures for on-line and printable book.

Thomas Vaughan tevaughan at gmail.com
Wed Mar 9 20:25:31 CET 2011

On Wed, Mar 9, 2011 at 13:00, William Adams <will.adams at frycomm.com> wrote:
> Your project cuts to the chase of the dichotomy of printed and electronic
> texts.

Yeah, I'm afraid that it does.

> Unfortunately, the ebook standards haven't been keeping up, so I believe that the
> electronic equivalent of a deluxe ``coffee table book'' is going to be the
> customized stand-alone app

I've been thinking about this project for years and waiting for
technology to mature.

Early on, I discarded the idea of a stand-alone application because I
want the printed book to be a sufficient presentation of the material.

It seems to me that a PDF file, together with some javascript files,
should be able to do the job. The PDF can be read on-line by itself or
printed with high quality on paper. If a user's browser supports
WebGL, then clicking on the PDF file will bring up the dynamic figure
in the Web browser.

In this approach, the hard part is to figure out how to write a single
description for a figure so that a high-quality static image is
generated for the figure and so that an interactive, dynamic version
of the figure is generated in javascript.

> Wish I could be more helpful --- I will note that there is a really neat on-line
> presentation of Euclid's _Elements_ --- Joyce's Java version which is along the
> lines of what you're planning:
> http://aleph0.clarku.edu/~djoyce/java/elements/elements.html

I'd indeed like to be able to do something similar to that, but there
must also be a high-quality printable version whose static images are
sufficient for presenting the material.

Thomas E. Vaughan

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