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Re: PDF vs. CSS media @ print


From: KNOCK Alistair
Date: Mar 15, 2005 2:55AM

Hi Ed,

> We produce a number of long and complex documents for the public to
download and print.
> Indiana Department of Environmental Management

That's the kind of joined-up thinking I like to see. :(

Produce the files in HTML and PDF, and encourage people to use either
version and print only if they have to. I'm sure it's possible to
create nicely paginated print-media CSS, but just imagine the browser
that ignores the precisely configured line-height you've chosen, and
splurges the bottom line of each page on to a new one... along with the
page break! Goodbye rainforest.

PDFs are OK providing you've presented an accessible version as the
alternative (or better, as the main version). You should also consider
whether it's best to make reference to page numbers at all; a chart with
relevance to the section of text should be situated very close to the
section of text, so that it can be referenced by the chart name / figure
number, and then the user need only flick back/forward one page. Of
course if it's a longer document with several references to the same
chart, then page numbers may be necessary or an appendix may be
preferable, depending on the impact required.