Viewing Pages documents in Linux
Fri 10 Sept 10
As part of my job I end up viewing a lot of documents created in Pages and on my Linux box that is a pain. It turns out though that Pages documents are just zip archives containing an XML file which is the actual document, a PDF preview of the rendered document and a few other files. As all I need to do is to view the document the PDF does me fine.
I did the manual process of unzipping the file and viewing it a few times then wrote this simple script to do it for me, it basically creates a temporary directory with a unique name in /tmp then extracts the PDF to that directory and finally opens the file in my PDF viewer.
#!/usr/bin/env bash tmp_dir=`mktemp -d` unzip -q "$1" -d $tmp_dir QuickLook/Preview.pdf evince $tmp_dir/QuickLook/Preview.pdf &
I don't know how up-to-date the PDF is, I assume that it is re-created every time the document is saved but I haven't checked that out. So far it has always been accurate for me and until it stops being I'll be happy working like this.
 Pages is the worst word processing package I've ever used, it might be OK for doing DTP work in but as a word processor it blows.