The file format is not to blame. Morons who scan text-based documents into PDF files, saving each page as an image are to blame. Even in 1995 or so, when I was first exposed to OCR technology, it worked "fairly well." Anyone converting text to PDF by scanning pages in as images these days is a complete moron, and a huge variety of applications now support exporting text-based documents directly to PDF format with full text search and indexing capabilities intact, along with fancy formatting like gasp italics, bold script, superscript, subscript, numbers, fairly complex mathematical expressions, etc. Hell, images can even be embedded in PDF docs that are largely textual content (holy wow, the technology!), along with alternate text and hyperlinks. In other words, "WTFMATE."