n. A groundbreaking Page Description Language
), based on work originally done by John Gaffney at Evans
and Sutherland in 1976, evolving through `JaM' (`John and Martin',
Martin Newell) at XEROX PARC
, and finally implemented in its
current form by John Warnock et al. after he and Chuck Geschke
founded Adobe Systems Incorporated in 1982. PostScript gets its
leverage by using a full programming language, rather than a series
of low-level escape sequences, to describe an image to be printed
on a laser printer or other output device (in this it parallels
, which exploited a similar insight about editing tasks).
It is also noteworthy for implementing on-the fly rasterization,
from Bezier curve descriptions, of high-quality fonts at low (e.g.
300 dpi) resolution (it was formerly believed that hand-tuned
bitmap fonts were required for this task). Hackers consider
PostScript to be among the most elegant hacks of all time, and the
combination of technical merits and widespread availability has
made PostScript the language of choice for graphical output.