PDF to HTML5 – choosing the best fontsize

One of the interesting ‘issues’ in writing a PDF to HTML5 convertor is choosing the correct fontsize. In theory this should be easy. If it is 8pt in the PDF we use that for the PDF.

So what happens if we have a value of 8.5pt? This is perfectly possible in PDF (where it can be any double value) but HTML5 only allows 8 or 9. In Maths you would round 8.5 but in HTML5 the answer is it depends… Neither is perfect and you are also limited by the fact that Word spacing and Char spacing are also more limited than in PDF.

You also need to consider any Word Spacing and Text Spacing. I’ve been adding some heuristics this week to improve this in some cases. It makes some definite improvements but it is early days. So if you have any particularly interesting layouts which you think could be improved, let us know.

This post is part of our “Fonts Articles Index” in these articles we explore Fonts.

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Mark Stephens

System Architect and Lead Developer at IDRSolutions
Mark Stephens has been working with Java and PDF since 1999 and has diversified into HTML5, SVG and JavaFX. He also enjoys speaking at conferences and has been a Speaker at user groups, Business of Software, Seybold and JavaOne conferences. He has a very dry sense of humor and an MA in Medieval History for which he has not yet found a practical use.
Markee174

About Mark Stephens

Mark Stephens has been working with Java and PDF since 1999 and has diversified into HTML5, SVG and JavaFX.

He also enjoys speaking at conferences and has been a Speaker at user groups, Business of Software, Seybold and JavaOne conferences. He has a very dry sense of humor and an MA in Medieval History for which he has not yet found a practical use.

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