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Chapter 2. Overview

Chapter 2. Overview

Adobe PDF is a file format for representing documents in a manner independent of the application software, hardware, and operating system used to create them and of the output device on which they are to be displayed or printed. A PDF document consists of a collection of objects that together describe the appearance of one or more pages, possibly accompanied by additional interactive elements and higher-level application data. A PDF file contains the objects making up a PDF document along with associated structural information, all represented as a single self-contained sequence of bytes.

A document's pages (and other visual elements) can contain any combination of text, graphics, and images. A page's appearance is described by a PDF content stream, which contains a sequence of graphics objects to be painted on the page. This appearance is fully specified; all layout and formatting decisions have already been made by the application generating the content stream.


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