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goon (3162)

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lives ~ melbourne [], australia.

breaths ~ perl monger [] and LUV []

writes ~ bootload [], groking software, bit by bit into plain english

codes ~ [] and []

Journal of goon (3162)

Tuesday January 27, 2004
12:52 AM

m$word-pdf, maestro and australia day

doc->pdf cont.

looks like I have found a possible quicker path to get word docs to pdf. (wonder if it can handle complex tables and embedded images?).

matts (axkit) just left a message on my use.perl journal reporting that he recommends using HTMLDOC for converting html to pdf. It also has an Axkit plugin. I checked out the man and faq. GNU licensing, perl bindings and end user support available.


downloading maestro (38.5Mb) to check out mars rover data. reminds me of the 3d pathfinder back in 97. posted detailed comparison of rover ground images of opportunity and spirit.

australia day

25 Jan. all I can say is crack a tube! (Sound of cans opening) and Australia, Australia, Australia, Australia, we love you amen!.

philosophers song - monty pythons flying circus - Episode 22
Immanuel Kant was a real piss-ant who was very rarely stable.
Heideggar, Heideggar was a boozy beggar who could think you under the table.
David Hume could out-consume Wilhelm Freidrich Hegel.
And Whittgenstein was a beery swine who was just as sloshed as Schlegel.
There's nothing Nieizsche couldn't teach 'ya 'bout the raising of the wrist.
Socrates, himself, was permanently pissed.
John Stewart Mill, of his own free will, after half a pint of shanty was particularly ill.
Plato, they say, could stick it away, half a crate of whiskey every day!
Aristotle, Aristotle was a bugger for the bottle,
And Hobbes was fond of his Dram.
And Rene Descartes was a drunken fart:
"I drink, therefore I am."
Yes, Socrates himself is particularly missed;
A lovely little thinker, but a bugger when he's pissed.

Saturday January 24, 2004
10:17 PM

complex HTML-->???-->PDF?

the problem

  • but the current Word doc (the catalogue) has tables, graphics and was 'built' with Word templates, so I have no idea how ell it would all convert.

the site that got me interested in pdf was Stas Beckmans site, He gave a talk to the melbourne pm last year. Through the course of his talk on mod_perl 2 he showed the notes from his site in html with pdf downloads of the site.

So I tried to re-create this html->ps->pdf so that I too could have a printable version of a project I'm working on called Ratpile (make a directory that has *stuff* stored in it searchable by stuffing information about it into a relational database - data mining some may call it.) using perl+DBI+TT2. The template I created is a *bare bones* html page sans images. This is the technique Stas is using with his docset.

the point I guess I'm trying to make is I've used text only and not images. I've done a bit of research and this is what I've come up with...

  • graphics are supported in postscript (3?)
  • others better (ybiC) than I, have hacked together html->PS->PDF code and appears to handle images via html2ps but not html tables (Create PostScript and PDF versions of all HTML files in given directory )
  • one approach could be to use Matt Sergeants, PDFLib (load_image method) a oo wrapper around pdflib by but I seem to remember has restrictions for use under OSI (has to be opensource, private use or researcher).
  • or use Alfred Reibenschuhs - Text::PDF::API where I found via an old page PDF-API2-0 which has some image (jpg,png,handleing capabilities
  • logreport has an interesting set of observations about html->PDF generation. Namely problems with html formatting and tables

building html->PDF with images and troublesome html tables

now given what we have found above I would suggest the following (unless anyone has a better idea) of using:

  • extract word document to html
  • extract table data (word document via OLE) or (via html via Html-TableExtract - like latter better.)
  • remove html tables in html documents
  • reinsert data into a simple table using <pre> tags for layout and html tags for bolding, emphasis. Or find some other method by experimentation in html for representing tables (text)
  • PDF-API2 as the PDF renderer. This can all be done in code.

the real problem maybe rendering the tables generated from word. complicated layout in word (re-rendered to html) will have to be modified to the postscript syntax then rendered to PDF. The problem is defined by converting the html tables to pdf.

it is not rocket science to create a bit of code to extract the data from the table, re-create a table using PDF-API (and its child modules).

but is there a shorcut?

of course you could forget all the above and take your chances with Michael Frankl's HTML-HTMLDOC and convert you html files directly to PDF :)

the rocket science bit is trying to get this to work on cygwin or win32


damn I love cpan.

Sunday January 18, 2004
05:09 PM

Iain Truskett RIP 2003-12-29

[ #16893 ]

update: 13JAN2003 Andy Lester (oreillynet) writes ... I never met him, or even spoke to him except through email and IRC, but I feel like he was a friend. He was always willing to help out when possible, and at least discuss an idea when not.

perlmonks today - Iain Campbell Truskett ("Spoon"/"Koschei") RIP 2003-12-29 According to his girlfriend's blog, Koschei passed away from a cardiac arrest at the age of 24. He was a significant contributor to the CPAN, and frequently interacted with us on the Perl IRC channels. His wiki is still up for perusal. He will be missed. Rest In Peace, my friend. -- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker

Iain will be missed. It was only last November that he gave up some time to present a talk on DateTime at the PM.

Iain talked in detail how the development was proceeding on the Datetime modules and how he spent the last 8 months hard work crafting ("hacking" is a poor choice of words. Conceptually DateTime is not for the weak of mind). The talk was well presented, informative and most of all amusing (especially the bit on the evolution of the French Revolutionary Calander)

I will certainly be thinking of him when I'm using any of his modules. His legacy is more than mere code.