Automatically generated PDFs have always been around, but the quality has generally not matched those created by a skilled operator, using a dedicated pagination system. Well, our pagination “engine” is TeX, which can be triggered to run automatically, and on a server.
An exciting development in August of 2014 has been RVFormatter, allowing the generation of beautifully typeset PDFs, automatically from a master XML document. This means that publishers can now generate PDFs on the fly, and as requested by readers. The advantage is that up-to-date information (annotations, comments, etc) can be embedded in the PDF as “layers”.
Watch this space for more information!