Artifex 2nd Quarter 2017 Newsletter

We’ve just released our 2nd Quarter 2017 newsletter. Read on for an update on some of our latest news on Ghostscript, MuPDF and SmartOffice.

Technology News

Artifex Awarded USPTO Patent for Color Management Innovation
We are proud to announce that Artifex was recently awarded a patent from the United States Patent and Trademark Office for its proprietary object-based color handling technology, Graphic Object Dependent Color Management Technology. This newly patented technology may be integrated into devices designed to render or project images, graphics and texts contained on the same page. This is a significant advancement in color management that will yield a much improved viewing experience that is beneficial to any company producing devices for delivering multiple objects on a page, such as printers, televisions and projectors. We are extremely proud of our engineering team for continuing to improve Ghostscript, serve our customers and demonstrate our technical leadership.

Click to view the patent. For more detailed information on color-handling in Ghostscript, please see these additional resources:

  • Graphic Object Dependent Color Management – A fundamental data sheet on Ghostscript color management.
  • Ghostscript Color Management – A white paper providing more detail regarding the patented color architecture in Ghostscript. The document is suitable for users who wish to obtain accurate color with their output device as well as for developers who wish to customize Ghostscript to achieve a higher level of control and/or interface with a different CMM.

Ghostscript 9.21 Update Release
Artifex proudly released its fifteenth full release in the Ghostscript and GhostPDL 9.xx series. Customers interested in evaluating this latest Ghostscript release can do so by visiting our Ghostscript download web site. Those interested in licensing the commercial version of Ghostscript should contact us at sales@artifex.com. 

This new release includes the following updates and enhancements.

Enhanced XPS to PDF Conversion
Converting XPS to PDF is a useful workflow for some of our customers. While XPS is an important file format in the Windows ecosystem, it has not received widespread adoption elsewhere. This makes the ability to convert XPS to a widely accepted standard like PDF, a natural choice for workflows that include archiving, printing, and interchange, both valuable and desirable.

Artifex has supported this conversion for years, but due to differences in the way text is represented in PDF vs. XPS, preserving underlying content was not supported.  This meant the text can be displayed but it cannot be searched or copied as text. With the release of Ghostscript 9.21, we now support properly conserving the underlying content, enabling search, copy paste, and other high level operations.

Even Toned Screening in TIFF Scaled Devices
Our award winning Even Toned Screening (ETS) has been incorporated into the tiff scaled devices.  These devices will scale down contone output and then apply the ETS algorithm to the scaled result.  We recommend users try out the new screening and compare it with the default error diffusion to see which is best suited for their workflow.

Other Ghostscript Update News
Artifex received several customer reports of very large, complex paths rendering slowly.  We have now designed a new scan converter which is optional in the latest release that addresses the performance shortcoming; we plan to make this the default scan converter in the next release. We look forward to any customer feedback about this new feature, which can be enabled from the command line with (-dSCANCONVERTERTYPE=2).

We continue to improve Ghostscript cross compiling support in this release to ease configuration for embedded and mobile devices.  Better documentation for this development is forthcoming, but if you have questions about cross compiling please send us an email at support@artifex.com.

Deeper Documentation
Customers have expressed interest in developing a better understanding of our MuPDF C library. In response to this interest, we are taking steps to provide more complete technical information for MuPDF. Artifex engineer Robin Watts is authoring “MuPDF Explored,” which will provide comprehensive coverage of the design and implementation of MuPDF. While serving as developer documentation, this writing will also delve deeply into the internals of the library.  A first draft of “MuPDF Explored” is distributed with the latest release of MuPDF 1.11.

Other MuPDF Update News   MuPDF SVG output can now contain actual text instead of paths.  There were also several improvements to accommodate peculiarities of SVG readers.

SmartOffice Releases Track Changes for Word
Early this year we released a significant new feature for SmartOffice, our mobile office productivity app: Track Changes for Word documents. This highly valued feature is used by lawyers, contract administrators, work teams across many industries and organizations to share edits, comments and changes on Word documents.

SmartOffice Track Changes will provide the key functionality a mobile user will need to “mark-up” a Word document and will enable teams to effectively collaborate by exchanging edits and comments on a single shared document.  Key features include:

  • Enable/disable change tracking on your device
  • Author configuration (add your name/initials to accompany your edits)
  • Display changes in the edited document
  • Edit existing changes
  • Add and view comments
  • Previous/next change navigation
  • Reject/accept changes made by others

We currently have versions of this feature-enhanced SmartOffice available for enterprise users, in both SmartOffice branded and SDK customizable versions (app store versions will come later this year). Interested customers can secure a trial version of SmartOffice for evaluation right now by contacting Artifex VP of Marketing Ted Simon at ted.simon@artifex.com.

New Partners

Artifex is pleased to announce the following new OEM partners and customers.

MuPDF

  • Concept Communications
  • Linearity
  • Monitise
  • Wing Lung Bank

SmartOffice

  • BenQ