Sunday, July 11, 2010

Security first - pdfs and embedded files

A short posting with an example of the screenshot from a pdf reader ( Okular )

Pdf generators sometime include some of the settings for how the pdf was generated into the final pdf itself.

A security conscious pdf reader should give the user some information, rather than just rendering the embedded file:


When generating the pdf using a very feature rich Pdf Writer, there are many, many, options such as the CMYK profile.

Adobe Distiller likes to include a file named 'folder.options' (or similar) that contains entries like the following:
  • CompatibilityLevel 1.3
  • PDFXCompliantPDFOnly false
...and so on.

There is just one advantage I can see from having a copy of the embedded folder.options ...
...to see for yourself the compatibility settings which the author thought were
appropriate for the distribution of their published pdf.


Hybrid PDF/ODF export from OpenOffice:


Whilst on the subject of embedded files, I am running a recent version of OpenOffice (3.2) and noticed that pdf export has a new checkbox labelled 'Create hybrid file'

If you want maximum compatibility with people using open source AND adobe readers, then be wary of ticking 'Create hybrid file'.

Whilst it might seem convenient for yourself, I suggest you do some thorough testing with Adobe reader software before creating hybrid PDF/ODF files for wider distribution.


OpenOffice version 3 prior to version 3.2 and ColorSpace:

 If you have sent a pdf to a colleague and they have reported back they were unable to read it and their reader software reported 'invalid ColorSpace', then
consider running OpenOffice 3.2

( OpenOffice 3.2 was released in February 2010 and has better compatibility with the latest versions of Adobe reader )

OpenOffice 3.2 is the default version for the upcoming Debian Squeeze release.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Protein and Carbohydrate balance

Some web articles describe a "High Protein Diet", here I draw your attention to a "Low Protein Diet", an easy trap for some ready meals.

Here is an example of Cauliflower Cheese Grills ( grassingtons.co.uk ):

Cooked per 100g breakdown for Protein and Carbohydrate:
  • Protein 6.1g
  • Carbohydrate 25.3g
So in those Grills the Carbohydrate is 4 times the protein.

Nothing much wrong with that, although if you are in the muscle building phase of your cycling regime, you might want to be wary of that '4 times' factor and seek something higher in protein.

You might like to add half a tin of Tuna chunks (27% protein) if you want to tip the balance back a bit in protein's favour :)


Tuna, Chickpeas, Beans and misconceptions about Protein levels:

People often wrongly think that Chickpeas are around a quarter protein. They are when they are raw, but things change when looking at a supermarket tin of Chickpeas.

Quoting directly from this Wikipedia page:
One hundred grams of mature boiled chickpeas contains 164 calories, 2.6 grams of fat (of which only 0.27 grams is saturated), 7.6 grams of dietary fiber and 8.9 grams of protein.
Which fits with what I read on the back of the tin (6% to 8% protein).

( If you see a figure of 23% or higher protein for Chickpeas then I would be thinking that these were raw Chickpeas perhaps. )

However If your supermarket tin says 23% or more protein, then post the brand name in a comment to this article and I'll gladly stock up :)

Here is a useful link for protein content of beans.

Most beans in that list are in the 6% to 8% protein range so Chickpeas seem to be pretty typical in terms of their protein level.


Tuna, at roughtly 25% protein, is something that you can use to boost the protein content of a bean meal, if you are unhappy with the protein level.

How much protein do I need?:

There are lost of answers (and the links provided later are a good place to start)

One simple answer...
The only people who should be getting less than 40g per day of protein are children
( If you are an adult and getting less than 40g per day then do read the section "Protein links" below to understand why this is not great )

Quote from bbc.co.uk/health:
Health professionals suggest men should eat 55.5g protein a day and women 45g.


Bean links:



Protein links:

Tuna Baked Potato - where it all goes wrong:

You can eat Tuna Baked Potato and still be living a "Low protein diet"

Because people who diet tend to cut out some starchy foods and greasy foods,
there is a temptation to hide behind a "Tuna Baked Potato" as proof of diet regime.

Firstly if you want a high protein meal then it needs lots of Tuna, rather than a meagre sprinkling
on the top.

Secondly, if Ian Botham wouldn't bowl your Jacket Potato then it is too big.
Most people have idea of the size of a cricket ball. The chef in your canteen might think they are doing you a favour by ordering in 'oversize' potatoes for Jacket Potato meals, but perhaps it is not such a great idea.

Thirdly, try half fat Mayonaise and/or a better oven cooking method if your Potato is too dry.
Avoid the temptation to reach for a packet* of butter and grease things up.

*If you thought two packets here then I rest my case.

Taking a Tuna Baked Potato with a huge Potato, tiny sprinking of Tuna, and two sachets of butter, is kidding no one. You might aswell have queued at the chips counter.


Final tip - look to Lentils:

Apparently cooked lentils are 18% protein, so pick up a Lentil cook book and you have a great way of getting high protein meals as an alternative to Tuna :)


Note: I am not a fan of Atkins diet or Low Carb diets generally. This article is about equipping myself with the knowledge of how much Protein is recommended, and how to get it at mealtime.