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#21 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 11:18 AM

First of all, a PDF file is *NOT* a text file.

We are probably using the term "text file" in a slightly different way.

A "simple text" file in a Windows environment typically would have a TXT extension, would typically be encoded as ASCII text (although UTF-8 and other international encodings are becoming more common), and typically would be opened with a very simple text editor such as Notepad. Such "simple text" files usually have no formatting codes or other meta data. And I certainly agree that PDF files are not "simple text" files.

Files such as RTF, Microsoft Word, WordPerfect, HTML, and (yes) PDF are "rich text" files. Such "rich text" files really are text files rather than graphics files, but they typically include formatting codes and other meta data, and they often include embedded or linked graphics files.

To this end, we can observe that RTF and HTML files can be opened with Notepad just fine. As such, you can see the formatting codes and other meta data as text, but to see the formatting codes and other meta data rendered properly you would have to open an RTF file in a word processor and you would have to open an HTML file in a Web browser or other program that can render HTML.

Microsoft Word documents really can't be opened with Notepad in a way that makes any sense because the formatting codes and meta data are binary, but that doesn't mean that Microsoft Word documents aren't "rich text" files, because they are. Whether PDF's can be opened with Notepad in a way that makes sense depends a little bit on the specific PDF. The text in a PDF is fine in Notepad, as are the formatting codes and other meta data. The only issue you have with opening a PDF file in simple text editor such as Notepad is that embedded images are binary and Notepad can't display binary data in hexadecimal or other format that makes sense. But a slightly more sophisticated text editor than Notepad - and I mean a fairly simple text editor, not a graphics editor - can certainly deal with the binary meta data in a Microsoft Word file or binary graphics images in a PDF just fine, so long only as the binary data can be displayed in hexadecimal.

Way back at the beginning of time, I had to support some applications that created PDF files, and as such I had to learn how to hand code PDF files using a tool just as primitive as Notepad. And to this day, I hand code HTML files on my personal Web page using a tool just as primitive as Notepad. So I'm confident that these are text files rather than graphics files, albeit "rich text" files which include formatting codes and meta data and maybe embedded or linked graphics.

Jerry

#22 Ludlow Bay

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 01:23 PM

We are probably using the term "text file" in a slightly different way.

A "simple text" file in a Windows environment typically would have a TXT extension, would typically be encoded as ASCII text (although UTF-8 and other international encodings are becoming more common), and typically would be opened with a very simple text editor such as Notepad. Such "simple text" files usually have no formatting codes or other meta data. And I certainly agree that PDF files are not "simple text" files.

Files such as RTF, Microsoft Word, WordPerfect, HTML, and (yes) PDF are "rich text" files. Such "rich text" files really are text files rather than graphics files, but they typically include formatting codes and other meta data, and they often include embedded or linked graphics files.

To this end, we can observe that RTF and HTML files can be opened with Notepad just fine. As such, you can see the formatting codes and other meta data as text, but to see the formatting codes and other meta data rendered properly you would have to open an RTF file in a word processor and you would have to open an HTML file in a Web browser or other program that can render HTML.

Microsoft Word documents really can't be opened with Notepad in a way that makes any sense because the formatting codes and meta data are binary, but that doesn't mean that Microsoft Word documents aren't "rich text" files, because they are. Whether PDF's can be opened with Notepad in a way that makes sense depends a little bit on the specific PDF. The text in a PDF is fine in Notepad, as are the formatting codes and other meta data. The only issue you have with opening a PDF file in simple text editor such as Notepad is that embedded images are binary and Notepad can't display binary data in hexadecimal or other format that makes sense. But a slightly more sophisticated text editor than Notepad - and I mean a fairly simple text editor, not a graphics editor - can certainly deal with the binary meta data in a Microsoft Word file or binary graphics images in a PDF just fine, so long only as the binary data can be displayed in hexadecimal.

Way back at the beginning of time, I had to support some applications that created PDF files, and as such I had to learn how to hand code PDF files using a tool just as primitive as Notepad. And to this day, I hand code HTML files on my personal Web page using a tool just as primitive as Notepad. So I'm confident that these are text files rather than graphics files, albeit "rich text" files which include formatting codes and meta data and maybe embedded or linked graphics.

Jerry


Your confidence eludes me :)

#23 APerson

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 04:50 PM

First of all, a PDF file is *NOT* a text file. You can't even read it in a simple text editor. A PDF file is Portable Document Format containing complete formatting and accompanying source file information of its components, which may include text, drawings, multimedia, video, 3D, maps, full-color graphics, photos, and even rules (logic).

RootsMagic doesn't look inside the PDF to see what it contains ... it merely reads the file extension and should supply the appropriate thumbnail icon. Simple.


Absolutely, this was also discussed previously. All RM5 (or RM4) needs to do is supply the appropriate thumbnail - which as is clearly evident by many other programs, that thumbnail includes a representation of the first page in the .pdf.

#24 craigg

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 06:38 PM

The RootsMagic Release 5 Media Properties window should display the full file name to which the media properties apply.

#25 Romer

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 11:30 PM

Full path/filename can be seen by clicking on the Change Media File button in the Media Properties screen.

#26 APerson

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Posted 30 November 2011 - 01:21 PM

I have a hard time seeing how this Wish could be implemented. PDF files are not graphics files. They are text files. The thing that's confusing in this regard is that many text file formats, including PDF, support the inclusion of embedded graphics files. It's especially confusing when there is a text file such as a PDF file that doesn't actually contain any text and which contains only one embedded graphics file. In this case, the text file such as a PDF file looks like a graphics file, feels like a graphics file, smells like a graphics file, and tastes like a graphic file. :) But it isn't a graphics file. It's a text file. How do you create a thumbnail for a text file?

Jerry


.pdf are not text files! Have you ever scanned a document and created a .pdf? That most certainly is not a text file! As I've noted, MANY other programs display a thumbnail of to first page in a pdf. Here's a link to that shows .pdf thumbnails in Windows Explorer.


http://www.pretentiousname.com/adobe_pdf_x64_fix/adobe_pdf_thumbnails_fix_large.png


Other software applications have displayed .pdf thumbnails for many, many years! This is nothing new.

#27 craigg

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Posted 30 November 2011 - 06:15 PM

Full path/filename can be seen by clicking on the Change Media File button in the Media Properties screen.


Why should I go to another window when I am in the properties window to see the full file name? Isn't file name a property of the media item?
Besides in my version, the window that comes up after clicking the Change Media File button does not show the file name. Also the Edit Media window does not show any file name. If I were using that Edit Media window, I would like to be sure what file I am asking to be changed.

#28 Romer

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 10:03 PM

Sorry -- I wasn't necessarily suggesting that you should have to resort to the Change media file button to find the path/name (design matter), but just giving an alternate means of getting to the path/name. I just tried it here on my Vista laptop, and the path/name wasn't displayed in the File name field in the Open dialog box as it was on the XP machine that I was using when I wrote the earlier message a few days ago.

By the way, you can also see the path/name in the Media Gallery screen, from which you click on the thumbnail, then Properties to get to the Media Properties screen.

#29 John James

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 03:45 AM

Other software applications have displayed .pdf thumbnails for many, many years! This is nothing new.

I agree, this is another disappointment for me also.

#30 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 09:42 PM

.pdf are not text files! Have you ever scanned a document and created a .pdf? That most certainly is not a text file! As I've noted, MANY other programs display a thumbnail of to first page in a pdf. Here's a link to that shows .pdf thumbnails in Windows Explorer.


http://www.pretentiousname.com/adobe_pdf_x64_fix/adobe_pdf_thumbnails_fix_large.png


Other software applications have displayed .pdf thumbnails for many, many years! This is nothing new.

This horse has been pretty well beaten and is pretty dead, but let's beat it just a bit more anyway.

  • On the issue of whether PDF's are text files or not, we would probably have to agree to disagree at this point. I would just re-iterate that I can create and look at a PDF file just fine with Notepad. I can even create fancy formatting in a PDF file with Notepad because all the fancy formatting controls are plain ASCII or UTF-8 text. As a matter of analogy, the same thing is true of RTF files. To wit, all the fancy formatting controls in an RTF file consist of plain ASCII or UTF-8 text. I mention RTF files because RM will create RTF files for you if you wish. You would usually open an RTF file that is created by RM with a word processor in order to be able to see the formatted text. But I do occasionally open RTF files with Notepad. In Notepad, you cannot see the fancy formatting in RTF files but you do see the fancy formatting controls that create the fancy formatting. The reason that I occasionally open RTF files created by RM with Notepad is so that I can see the fancy formatting controls and correct bugs in those controls that have been put there by RM.
  • I do agree that Notepad is not up to creating a PDF file with embedded graphics because the embedded graphics are binary rather than plain ASCII or UTF-8 text.
  • I need to stand at least partially corrected on the issue of whether PDF files have thumbnails or not. Sometimes PDF files do have thumbnails (mea culpa). But the situation is considerable more complicated than initially meets the eye.
    • Thumbnails are created for a number of standard graphics file types such as JPG, GIF, etc. I'm not 100% sure, but I believe that such thumbnails are created by Windows itself.
    • For sure, Windows does not create thumbnails for PDF files. Rather, if thumbnails exist for PDF files, the thumbnails are created by Adobe Acrobat Reader. When you first create a PDF file, there is no thumbnail. The first time you open the PDF file with Adobe Acrobat Reader, the thumbnail is created. It's an automatic process, and you don't have to tell Adobe Acrobat Reader to create the thumbnail. It just does it. But if you create a PDF file and never open it with Adobe Acrobat Reader there will never be a thumbnail for that particular file. Obviously, the vast majority of PDF files do get opened with Adobe Acrobat Reader at least once, so the vast majority of PDF files do have thumbnails.
    • After Adobe Acrobat Reader creates a thumbnail for a PDF file, Windows displays the thumbnail just fine. As you say, there are surely any number of other programs that will display such thumbnails as well.
    • For the purposes of creating a thumbnail for a PDF file, Adobe Acrobat Reader does not find the first embedded graphics image it can find in the file and use that to create the thumbnail. Rather, it formats the first page of the file and uses the appearance of the first page to create the thumbnail. The first page could contain one or more embedded images, but the first page could also consist only of text. Either way, what the first page looks like is what the thumbnail looks like.
    • The basic reason that RM will not display thumbnails for PDF files even when such thumbnails exist has to do with the way the Media Gallery imports a PDF file. From the Add Media Item sub-window, RM will import an "Image" or a "File". Well, it will also import "Video" and "Audio", but those two choices are not relevant to our discussion. For those items that are imported as an "Image", RM will display thumbnails when they exist. For those items imported as a "File", RM will not display thumbnails even if they exist. But RM will not import a PDF file as an "Image". A PDF file will only be imported as a "File". As you might suspect, I don't think the solution is for RM to import a PDF file as an "Image" because I don't think a PDF file is an image. Rather, I think the solution is for RM to display thumbnails for all files in those cases where the thumbnails do happen to exist.
    • PDF's are not the only non-image files for which thumbnails may exist. For example, Microsoft PowerPoint files have thumbnails, but curiously Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel do not. I'm not sure why Microsoft would make thumbnails for PowerPoint and not for Word and Excel. However, the thumbnails for PowerPoint files are not created by Windows. Rather, the thumbnails for PowerPoint files are created by PowerPoint, just like the thumbnails for PDF files are created by Adobe Acrobat Reader rather than by Windows.
  • Finally, there is a bug that results in thumbnails not being created for PDF files on computers running 64 bit Windows/Vista or 64 bit Windows 7. I'm running 64 bit Windows 7 on my main machine, and I had to do considerable testing of PDF files and thumbnails on my old Windows/XP machine before I could compose this message. The bug is not in Windows and the bug is not in Adobe Acrobat Reader. Rather, the bug is in the Installer for Adobe Acrobat Reader. In a 64 bit Vista or Windows 7 environment, the Installer sets an option incorrectly in the Windows Registry. The incorrect option in the Windows Registry causes Adobe Acrobat Reader not to create thumbnails for PDF files. Again, this problem is specific to 64 bit Vista and Windows 7. A complete discussion of the problem and the fix may be found at http://social.techne...3-f34ffbdc4001. The upshot is that if you are running 64 bit Vista or Windows 7 you probably don't have any thumbnails whatsoever for any of your PDF files, whether you open them with Adobe Acrobat Reader or not.
Bottom line, armed with all the information above, I am now fully supportive of the idea that RM5 should display thumbnails for PDF files.

Jerry

#31 Renee Zamora

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Posted 07 December 2011 - 02:42 PM

As you might suspect, I don't think the solution is for RM to import a PDF file as an "Image" because I don't think a PDF file is an image. Rather, I think the solution is for RM to display thumbnails for all files in those cases where the thumbnails do happen to exist.

Confirming enhancement request is in our tracking system.
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#32 Vyger

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Posted 08 April 2012 - 04:28 AM

I would like to see previews, thumbnails of pdf files as windows now displays.

I first made this suggestion two years ago (Dec. 13, 2009) - I'd really like to see thumbnails of the front page of .pdf documents in the media, similar to way graphics files are displayed.

RootsMagic doesn't look inside the PDF to see what it contains ... it merely reads the file extension and should supply the appropriate thumbnail icon. Simple.

I feel it's worth reiterating the above point on PDF preview, it was pretty well discussed on this thread when it was pinned but as yet has not come about.

A couple of items I would like to add to the mix.

1. In Media gallery > Edit Media I would like to see Width and Height on the fit Option. This is because I have various media items that are long landscape images and others that are tall portrait images (newspaper clippings etc.). On such images neither Fit nor Actual size do what I want to help view the image.

2. On the same theme when viewing tall portrait images both the cursor buttons and PgUp/PgDn buttons act on the zoom level and not navigation. I would like to see either one or the other used for page navigation.

List View, Targeted Broken Link Search etc have come about and are very welcome - Thx :)

We are all limited by our visions and abilities

Whilst we can borrow from the visions of others we cannot always deliver.

 

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#33 Renee Zamora

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 05:46 PM

Confirming enhancement requests are in our tracking system.
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#34 Vyger

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 08:54 AM

Confirming enhancement requests are in our tracking system.


I was about to post a new wish but as the 2 year mark approaches since this well supported thread was last updated and we have not seen any real changes to Media Gallery I thought I would revive it and it's very good user opinions.

The Media Gallery List view is a useful view for managing Media Items although I believe it could benefit from a few simple enhancements to aid media management.

1. Enable Ascending/Descending sort from the column headers, ascending sort can be achieved now but not descending.

2. Add the Media Path as a column with of course the same sort options. This would be very useful working within collections providing the user has a structured hdd filing system or at the very least would encourage such a system.

Items in this list must really be contained within the RM database, the file creation date would be useful in identifying newer additions to a users media collection but unfortunately that is not currently contained in the database. It is feasible for Rootsmagic to lift information from the Meta data of the original files and include that in an expanded MultimediaTable and whilst I believe lifting creation dates and comments from files, whilst simple, is a long way off it gets my vote.

We are all limited by our visions and abilities

Whilst we can borrow from the visions of others we cannot always deliver.

 

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Excel to Gedcom conversion - simple getting started tutorials here

 

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#35 Renee Zamora

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 06:57 PM

Confirming enhancement requests are in our tracking system.
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