Thursday, August 24, 2006

The loneliest adobe

I feel a rant coming up.

Many months ago I was running Adobe Acrobat Reader 6.0 - and I never liked it because of long load times and such. I then tried out the real thing, Adobe Acrobat. This was even worse - apparently the professional editing program didn't even come with a quick PDF-viewing interface...I could almost see the little chunks of data running around in circles shouting "Why the bloody hell do we need to wake up the entire village just because a shoddy postcard needs reading?!!"
Anyway, after Adobe Reader 7.0 came out many have been over the moon about how efficient it is, how quickly it reads in PDFs, and how well it handles ActiveX viewing.

I beg to differ.

Back then I tried and now, for the past 2 hours, I've tried. Tried what, you ask? Tried to run the program..! I install and it just sits there...the first time you execute the Reader after installing it you hear the machine getting into gear...and then nothing happens. If you shoot directly from a PDF file, nothing happens. If you try to drag a PDF into a browser to witness the amazing efficiancy of version 7.08, nothing happens. The Task Manager shows the process "AcroRd32Info.exe" in action...for about 30 seconds at least...then it shuts down silently.

The weirdest thing is that almost nothing similar to this shows up when I do a search on Google. I usually pride myself on being quite good at digging out obscure online information that can get technical glitches eliminated - my technologically inept family have provided hours and hours of information-sifting fun. But this time...nothing. I find this fairly strange, since Acrobat Reader must be one of the top 5 installs worldwide (not counting the minions of Monopoly Microshaft).

Actually, I did find one nice match...but that was on Expert's Exchange, and I'm not paying $10 for advice that could very probably be useless. Why don't they do micro payments...that would bring in so many more customers and potential members.

The agony of looking at what might be a solution, yet not having access, drove me to find alternatives. There are several PDF viewers popping up out there. Still, it seems that they are somewhat emulator-like and need to carry their own interpretation of PDF. I finally chose Foxit, mostly because of its rating on - time will tell how well it performs. Their homepage looks awful but I guess that's the only real quality assurance you can get these days...

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