This section describes how to work with RasterMaster’s vector display technology. The VectorPDF sample demonstrates how to use vector PDF.

Information about RasterMaster Java’s Vector Display Technology

Vector display technology gets its name from the fact that it was originally designed to display, convert, and manipulate bitmap or raster graphics. These are files that contain just an array of bytes that form a grid of pixels or dots. Anything can be contained in the array, such as color images or plain text. There is no way to easily tell. Vector graphics such as PDF, MS Word, and MS Excel files contain commands that tell the viewer to display text or graphics at specific positions. Graphics could be lines, circles, or other shapes. In the past, RasterMaster would rasterize or draw the text and graphics commands into an off screen buffer which would then be imported into the main code as a bitmap image.

The main problem with this approach is one of resolution, or fidelity of the image being displayed. Bitmap images contain a finite array of pixels. When zoomed enough, the display just makes each pixel bigger. An image then becomes pixelated or blocky, sometimes referred to as the jaggies.

The new vector display technology will no longer rasterize the image, but instead it will store the list of graphic commands for an image. At display time, the image is drawn directly to the monitor screen, and each time the image is displayed it is redrawn. This can be a little slower than displaying a bitmap image, but the benefit is infinite resolution. The new display is no longer making pixels bigger, but instead it redraws text and graphics at a larger size. Lines, circles, graphics, etc. remain smooth since they are continually redrawn to match the appropriate zoom level. Text remains at a perfect quality since a larger font is selected for each successive zoom level. An example benefit would be for large engineering drawings, which can contain thousands of graphic commands. They can continually be zoomed to provide more and more detail.

Implementing RasterMaster’s Vector Display Technology

If you are an existing customer, implementation is simple. Just set the public variable as follows:

Simage.decomp_vect = true;

The decompress and display methods listed below will work the same:

  • IMG_decompress_bitmap(String, int) reads in a document in any format and converts it to a valid RasterMaster image.
  • IMG_display_bitmap_aspect(java.awt.Graphics,java.awt.Container, int, int, int, int, int) or IMG_display_bitmap(java.awt.Graphics, int, int, int, int)

Note: Currently, RasterMaster Java’s vector display technology is only available for PDF images. Other formats such as MS Word, MS Excel, PowerPoint, and AFP are currently in development.