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General info on iText

 
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Before asking a general question on iText, please read the free chapters that were made available by Manning Publications.
Above all, it is important to understand that iText is a library for developers, it is not an end user tool like Word, Open Office; iText is the PDF engine that is built in into other products such as Eclipse/BIRT and JasperReports. Whereas those higher level libraries give you a solution for a specific problem, iText gives you speed and the flexibility to create a PDF file exactly the way you want it.
 
blacksmith
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Originally posted by Bruno Lowagie:
...iText is the PDF engine that is built in into other products such as Eclipse/BIRT and JasperReports. Whereas those higher level libraries give you a solution for a specific problem, iText gives you speed and the flexibility to create a PDF file exactly the way you want it.



Eclipse/BIRT and JasperReports are pretty impressive products, but
I'll probably need to step over to iText for my humble project

Somewhere I saw the api can just be used from servlets, this is still
the case I guess?

Kind regards,

Gian
 
Bruno Lowagie
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Originally posted by Gian Franco Casula:
Somewhere I saw the api can just be used from servlets, this is still
the case I guess?


No, you can use iText from any Java or .NET application. As a matter of fact, most of the examples that come with the book are small standalone Java examples.
 
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Hi Bruno,
I have used (and promoted) itext on several projects. Indeed, it gives speed and flexibility to the pdf's. The only drawback has been that the documentation was not finished, so I am actually glad you did finish it and even published it as a book. Good luck on sales !
friso
 
Bruno Lowagie
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Originally posted by frisode jonge:
The only drawback has been that the documentation was not finished, so I am actually glad you did finish it and even published it as a book.


Some areas are still not documented very well (for instance: the book doesn't talk about generating RTF with iText), but for the moment I have very little time. I'm also writing different articles providing more examples similar to the Foobar examples in the book.
 
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Dear Bruno,

Is your tool helpful in creating PDF's in other languages?

We have the need to create PDFs in Arabic, Farsi, Chinese, Russian, Spanish and English.

Thank you,
Skip
 
Bruno Lowagie
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Originally posted by Skip Cole:
Is your tool helpful in creating PDF's in other languages?



Yes.

Originally posted by Skip Cole:
We have the need to create PDFs in Arabic, Farsi, Chinese, Russian, Spanish and English.



iText supports all these languages.
There are two chapters in the book about this: 8 and 9.
Chapter 8 explains how to find the right font. In the examples, I print movie titles in their original language: English, French, Russian, Greek, Chinese, Japanese, Korean,...
Chapter 9 explains how to use the font: for instance when writing in vertical columns organized from right to left (Chinese, Japanese), when printing in horizontal lines from right to left (Hebrew, Arabic), and how to deal with diacritics and ligatures (Arabic).
Chapter 9 also explains what to do if you want to mix all these languages in one document.
There is however a problem with Indic languages: the ligatures aren't made correctly. Chapter 12 explains how to work around this problem.

For an example, see: http://itext.ugent.be/itext-in-action/examples/chapter09/results/peace.pdf
 
Bruno Lowagie
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Note that the list of languages is ordered alphabetically, but if you look for Farsi, you should look for Persian.
If a word is missing, that is not because iText doesn't support that language, but either because we don't know the translation for the word peace, or because we didn't find a font that has the needed glyphs (and that we could use for free).
[ November 21, 2006: Message edited by: Bruno Lowagie ]
 
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