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Corrupted symbols

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Kevin Pearson

Kevin Pearson


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I have had several situations where I saved a map from Illustrator in a PDF format and after emailing the file some of the symbols were altered and did not display as I intended. Of course I found out after the fact because the person I emailed the file to did not know how I intended for them to look. For instance a north arrow displayed as a large J and a star displayed as a small rectangle. One of the files was zipped up, but I am not sure about the other one. Has anyone else run into this? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.



    Jacques GĂ©linas

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Hi Kevin,

Not sure (actually I am never sure :) ) but this could a case of missing fonts that is if the north arrow is a glyph (character from a font).
Take a look at the fonts used in the pdf. If some are unique to your machine that could be the underlying reason.



David Medeiros

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Most likely they do not have the same font installed on their machine and a default symbol is being inserted. Embedding fonts in the PDF used to take care of this but recent updates treat this function differently I belive.

The solution is to create outlines (under the Type menu) before exporting to PDF.
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I often get into problems with PDf''s sent to others, and in many cases I send as a jpeg or image they can read and print.

Obviously if they need to edit or add then that's not helpful.




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I had a similar problem years back when building a website. I couldn't understand why my amazing looking website looked so crappy on everyone else's computer. Turns out it wasn't a common font and most people didn't have it installed on their machines by default.

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