Mobileread
Inserting right side blank pages for note taking in a PDF
#1  Bob Russell 12-15-2019, 01:18 PM
I have a PDF document with over 1000 pages and would like to add interleaved blank pages on the right hand side for notes, but keeping the file size as small as possible.

The idea is to view in 2 page landscape mode (e.g. on an iPad with GoodReader or equiv). Left is text, and right side page will be blank for stylus drawn notes.

Problems...
1) Manual effort - Inserting pages one by one is a long process for documents with a thousand pages.
2) Printing to pdf with new paper size - works well, but the document filesize grows. E.g. from 30meg to 600meg. I've also tried to print to pdf with lower resolution and have tried the MacOS Preview functionality to shrink, but it doesn't help.

Any suggestions for either adding the blank pages or changing the paper size without adding to the file size?

Thanks!
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#2  willus 12-17-2019, 11:26 PM
I was able to do this with k2pdfopt on a sample of mine. If your page size is 8.5x11 inches, try something like this:

k2pdfopt -mode crop -cbox 0s,0s,1s,1s -cbox 0s,0s,.02s,.02s -w 8.5in -h 11in myfile.pdf

This assumes that the upper left square quarter inch of your document pages are blank. If they are not, you may have to adjust the dimensions of the second "cbox", which is basically a dummy cropbox that creates your interleaved blank page.
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#3  Bob Russell 05-20-2020, 05:21 PM
Thanks willus.

Very positive results...
* Output is exactly as desired. Worked great.
* The new file size is no larger than the original document size
In fact, the new file is only 29meg.
* Looks like there's a lot of power and GUI versions are available also.

For more info...
* https://wiki.mobileread.com/wiki/K2pdfopt
* https://willus.com/k2pdfopt/

I also enjoyed the trip back memory lane seeing the TRS80 Blackbox and Star Trek programs on willus.com. Awesome!
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