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Halftone Screen Creation Tool. Copyright 2010-2011 Artifex Software, Inc.
This code is designed to enable the creation of clustered dot threshold arrays for halftoning, which can provide high lpi without quantization issues. As the lpi requirements of a halftone screen increases and begins to approach the limits of the printer resolution, the size of the clustered dot decreases and the number of levels that can be represented by the clustered dot decreases. To overcome this, the clustered dots are placed in a larger threshold array, where the threshold values of the individual clustered dots scaled are dithered to enable the representation of more gray levels within the larger screen. The dithering is performed in a manner that is pleasing to the visual system.
The command line and parameters are as follows:
halftone [-r resolution] [-l target_lpi] [-q target_quantization_levels]
[-a target_angle] [-s size_of_supercell] [-ps | -ppm]
resolution: The resolution of the output device in dots/inch. [default 300dpi]
target_lpi: The desired resolution of the screen in lines/inch. [default 75dpi]
target_quantization_levels: indicates the desired number of "gray" levels that you wish to achieve with the screen (e.g. 256). [default 256]
target_angle: The desired screen angle in degrees. [default 0 degrees]
size_of_supercell: The specified size of the supercell will impact the number of achievable levels. If a small size is specified (example 1) the smallest periodic cell will be created, regardless of the setting for target_quantization_levels and it is possible that target_quantization_levels is not achieved. size_of_supercell should not be set to something reasonably large to achieve a specified target_quantization_levels. For example 64. Work is underway to have this value optimally set based upon the desired number of gray levels.
The output of the code is an 8 bit row ordered Width x Height threshold array that is periodic vertically and horizontally. The size of the array is indicated in the output file name. Example Screen_Dithered_WxH.raw.
If the -ps option is specified, the output will be a screen that can readily be brought into ghostscript. For example
gswin32c -r300 -dDisplayFormat=16#20102 -c "(Screen_20x10.ps) run sethalftone (examples/tiger.eps) run"
It the -ppm option is specified, the screen is stored in a ppm image that is readily viewed by most image viewers.
Currently the code is limited in a few features, which will be included in the near future.
1) The dot shape is fixed to be a clustered dot. Other dot shapes will be added as well as the capability to define custom dot shapes.
2) The horizontal and vertical resolution of the output device is assumed to be the same currently. The plan is to fix this so that different resolutions can be specified (e.g. vertical 2400dpi horizontal 600dpi).
3) The code currently only creates 8 bit bi-level threshold arrays. It is planned to enable the creation of 16 bit and multi-level threshold arrays. Due to the manner in which the screens are created, this should be a simple task.
4) Often it is desired to incorporate a tone reproduction curve (TRC) into the design of a screen. While not currently supported, the plan is add that option into this code.
5) Typically screens are designed off line and provided as a threshold array to most applications. In postscript, it is possible that screens can be specified within the document with specific attributes including line frequency and dot shape. This code needs significant optimization before it should be folded into the ghostscript code base for use in this manner.
6) Minimum dot size handling.
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