Doing Linuxy Things in Mac OS X (Unix)

It’s a terrible title to describe something too few people realize: that Mac OS is a pretty face on top a really nice POSIX-compliant operating system. That is, Mac OS X is a UNIX.

As such, much of the geeky goodness available to those Linux folks is also available to Mac users: you’re just going to have to roll up your sleeves a bit and brave doing things like digging out the Terminal application that is sitting in your utilities folder (directory). (The shortcut to get to the Utilities folder while you are in the finder is CMD + SHIFT + U.)

What can you do once you have a terminal session open? Well, of course, regular readers of this logbook know that it’s where you can play with MacPorts and Python, but if you also read William Turkel’s blog (and you should), you can follow along as he works with PDFs, getting the text and images out and doing other such things.

Where Turkel directs his readers, which he assumes to be Linux users for the sake of the post, first to find out if they have things like xpdf installed by looking for a manual entry:

man xpdf

and then using a Linux package manager to install the software:

sudo aptitude install xpdf

Mac users with MacPorts can first find out if xpdf is installed by running man xpdf just like Linux users, and then they can install it, first by seeing if a port is available:

port search xpdf

And then you can select from the following options:

pdftohtml @0.40a (textproc)
    pdf to html converter based on xpdf.

poppler @0.24.1 (graphics)
    Poppler is a PDF rendering library based on the xpdf-3.0 code base:

xpdf @3.02pl5_1 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf is a viewer for PDF files.

xpdf-arabic @2003-feb-16 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for Arabic

xpdf-chinese-simplified @2004-jul-27 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for simplified Chinese

xpdf-chinese-traditional @2004-jul-27 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for traditional Chinese

xpdf-cyrillic @2003-jun-28 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for Cyrillic

xpdf-greek @2003-jun-28 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for Greek

xpdf-hebrew @2003-feb-16 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for Hebrew

xpdf-japanese @2004-jul-27 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for Japanese

xpdf-korean @2005-jul-07 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for Korean

xpdf-latin2 @2002-oct-22 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for latin2

xpdf-thai @2002-jan-16 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for Thai

xpdf-tools @3.02 (graphics, print)
    Wrapper port for xpdf CLI tools

xpdf-turkish @2002-apr-10 (graphics, print)
    Xpdf character mapping for Turkish

Found 15 ports.

(Isn’t it nice to have options?)

I would just install the main xpdf, which it the third item in the list above:

 sudo port install xpdf

Do the same for the other packages Turkel discusses and you can follow along with the rest of his post. Enjoy!

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