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[Groff] Displaying PDF slides (was: Colors, PowerPoint and PDFs)

From: Greg 'groggy' Lehey
Subject: [Groff] Displaying PDF slides (was: Colors, PowerPoint and PDFs)
Date: Fri, 21 Oct 2005 10:15:57 +0300
User-agent: Mutt/

On Thursday, 20 October 2005 at 15:37:12 -0600, Clarke Echols wrote:
> I'd like to create the equivalent of a PowerPoint presentation using
> PDF or other reasonable display.  It would be nice to be able to use
> the entire screen instead of a window, like PowerPoint does.  It has
> to run on Windows 98 and newer machines.  [I have trouble justifying
> the cost of Microsoft Office to get a PowerPoint composer.]

... not to mention the pain of having to use it.

I've been doing my slides in groff/PDF for years.  They're
(deliberately) not as brightly coloured as Robert Marks' examples, but
they look the way I want them to, and they're easy to put together.
You'll find one example at,
and others in the parent directory.  For presentations, I create
multiple slides with one more bullet point per slide, in much the same
way that Robert does, but I haven't included them on the web page.
You can also find some impossibly badly documented stuff (I'm working
on it) at

The real reason for this reply is: how do you *display* PDF slide
sets?  I currently use acroread, which renders well, but it's pretty
slow (it can take a second to change to a complicated page, even with
a 3 GHz CPU).  Also, using a laptop it's far too easy to hit "Home" or
"End" instead of "PageUp" or "PageDn", with embarrassing results.
I've tried things like xpdf, but the rendering doesn't stand up.

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