[OS X TeX] psfrag troubles/PostScript in 10.4.4

Ross Moore ross at ics.mq.edu.au
Thu Jan 12 18:15:54 EST 2006

Hi Tom, Bruno
    and others following this thread.

On 13/01/2006, at 6:57 AM, Thomas Schröder wrote:

>> Thus it seems using single-letter strings is the only way to use  
>> psfrag reliably, which limits its usability severely. For this  
>> reason I've given up on it. Have you tried WARMreader?
> I don't have Illustrator, so. PLus, I had psfrag working on the  
> other computer.

WARMreader doesn't need the full functionality of Illustrator.
It just needs a way to mark positions in an image, and allow
one or more strings to be associated with each marked position.
This information then needs to be saved into a .bb  file, using
a well-defined format, analagous to what Illustrator's MO plugin

An interested clever Mac programmer should be able to write an
application that does this. One feature would be to add visual
markers in a layer above the image, so that it is clear where
points have been marked already.
This layer does *not* get added to the graphic itself.

It's this latter point that makes WARMreader superior to the
  psfrag  approach, and allows it to work with arbitrary
graphics, not just .ps  or  .eps  files.

Besides, the first front-end for WARMreader was a little
MacOS 7 application, named Zephyr, which did just what
was described above --- see the URL below --- as well as
many other (unrelated) things.


>> And yes, the absence of EPS export in KaleidaGraph is really  
>> annoying, especially after all its years of existence and its  
>> successive updates.

Any difficulties of this kind are quite irrelevant with
the WARMreader approach to labeling graphics.

> But there's no pdffrag to enhance PDF files.

No, and there cannot be --- at least not easily.
This is because PDF has indexed tagging of byte-positions.
Anything that worked like  psfrag  would have to parse
a good portion of the PDF so as to adjust all these byte-counts
after inserting your labels.
And that is after having decompressed streams, add the labels,
then recompress.

>> By contrast, printing to a PS or PDF file from KaleidaGraph  
>> creates a PS or PDF graphic with the bounding box of a full A4 or  
>> Letter page (depending on your setup), and is then inadequate for  
>> a figure to be included in a LaTeX document.
> Oh, I set up a new paper size with which I create my graphs, so no  
> problem there. It's basically A6 landscape but the height is  
> smaller by 2cm or, so I can fit two graphs on one page. They look  
> really nice, actually :-)

Yes. Keeping to a fixed size is a good idea when writing a book
or series of books. However, sometimes you may want to use
the same images in a different setting;
e.g. at a different size for a presentation.

With WARMreader, you can use the same underlying graphic
and  .bb  file. Just change the size at which the image
is shown with   \includegraphics[scale=...]{....} .
Then use  \Large, \Huge, etc.  with the labels.

> Bye, Thomas

Hope this helps,

  and maybe it will inspire someone to write a simple utility
to make WARMreader more accessible, without Illustrator.



Ross Moore                                         ross at maths.mq.edu.au
Mathematics Department                             office: E7A-419
Macquarie University                               tel: +61 +2 9850 8955
Sydney, Australia  2109                            fax: +61 +2 9850 8114

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