PostScript is a page description language and programming language used primarily in the electronic and desktop publishing areas.
John Warnock and Chuck Geschke founded Adobe Systems in December 1982. They created the simplified page description language PostScript, which went on the market in 1985. At about this time they were visited by Steve Jobs, who urged them to adapt PostScript to be used as the language for driving laser printers, which was added to a Canon printing engine to create the LaserWriter.
In March of 1985, the Apple LaserWriter was the first printer to ship with PostScript, sparking the desktop publishing (DTP) revolution in the mid-1980s. The combination of technical merits and widespread availability made PostScript a language of choice for graphical output for printing applications. For a time an interpreter for this language was a ubiquitous component of laser printers, into the 1990s.
Once the de facto standard for electronic distribution of final documents, PostScript has effectively been succeeded by PDF in this area. By 2001 there were fewer printer models which came with support for PostScript, largely as a result of the increasing power of the built-in printing systems supplied with most operating systems. The use of a PostScript laser printer does, however, significantly reduce the CPU workload involved in printing documents, and does allow typeset-quality printing without the need for printer-specific drivers.
- PostScript Language Reference, third edition is the de facto defining work, known as "The Red Book" on account of its covers. The first edition covered PostScript Level 1, the second edition covered a greatly expanded language known as PostScript Level 2, and includes documentation for "Display PostScript" as well. The third edition covers PostScript 3 (with this version, Adobe dropped "level" from the name) but no longer includes DPS.
- PostScript Language Tutorial and Cookbook is the corresponding introductory text, known as "The Blue Book" on account of its covers.
- First Guide to PostScript is an introduction to the PostScript system.
- Mathematical Illustrations: A Manual of Geometry and PostScript — a book by Bill Casselman.
- Thinking in PostScript, 1990 by Glenn Reid, Addison-Wesley — available online courtesy of the author. A thorough tutorial.
- PS-to-PDF converter
- Wikipedia - PostScript