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16. PostScript > Designed to Last

Designed to Last

How do you define PostScript?

Charles Geschke: PostScript is a programming language whose primary purpose is to provide a high-level description of the content of (printed) pages in a device-independent representation.

John Warnock: PostScript is an interpretive programming language that emulates a simple, stack-oriented virtual machine. In addition to the normal operators found in most programming languages, PostScript has a very rich set of image, graphic, and font rendering operators. With PostScript, an application can emit PostScript commands in a resolution-independent manner that will define the appearance of a printed page (or display).

I think PostScript was successful because it is so flexible and has a well-defined underlying imaging model. Other printer protocols of the time attempted to statically define pages with data structures. These protocols invariably would fail at describing some intuitively simple pages.


  

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