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PDF Association

Mission Statement: To promote Open Standards-based electronic document implementations using PDF technology through education, expertise and shared experience for stakeholders worldwide.
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Participating in the PDF Techniques Accessibility Summit

The PDF Techniques Accessibility Summit’s objective is to establish a broad-based understanding of how PDF files should be tagged for accessibilty. It’s an opportunity to focus on establishing a common set of examples of accessible PDF content, and identify best-practice when tagging difficult cases.

Modernizing PDF Techniques for Accessibility

The PDF Techniques Accessibility Summit will identify best-practices in tagging various cases in PDF documents. Questions to be addressed will likely include: the legal ways to tag a nested list, the correct way to caption multiple images, the appropriate way to organize content within headings.

Refried PDF

My hospital emailed me a medical records release form as a PDF. They told me to print it, fill it, sign it, scan it and return it to the medical records department, in that order. In 2018? To get the form via email (i.e., electronically), yet be asked to print it? Did the last 20 years just… not mean anything! So I thought I’d be clever. I’d fill it first, THEN print it. Or better yet, never print it, but sign it anyhow, and return it along with a note making the case for improving their workflow. The story continues…

Slides and video recordings of PDF Days Europe 2018

You missed the PDF Days Europe 2018? Never mind! Here you can find the slides and video recordings of all 32 stunning sessions!

Using PDF/UA in accessibility checklists

PDF/UA, like PDF itself, is internally complex, but used correctly, actually makes things easier.

Typical uses for PDF/A

The PDF/A standard has proved its suit- ability for a wide variety of tasks. Here we can show you just a few brief practical examples.

Scanned documents for archiving: PDF/A is widely used to digitise paper-based files and records. A document scanner reads the original text, and specially de- signed software automatically converts the data into a searchable PDF/A file.

Archive migration: Solutions exist to help digital archives which are still using older formats to migrate to PDF/A. In most cases, the process can even be automated.

Incoming and outgoing mail: Whether a company receives letters or emails, PDF/A provides a reliable storage format for them. Letters can be automatically scanned and archived as PDF/A files, and emails and their attachments can be stored in PDF/A too. There are also great advantages to storing a copy of all out- going mail in PDF/A format. Outgoing mail data can be retrieved from popular print data streams such as AFP (Advanced Function Presentation).

Office documents: If your presentations, spreadsheets and text documents are likely to have long-term relevance and need to remain available for long periods of time, then PDF/A is the perfect format in which to archive them. The original programme used may directly support this to some extent, or you can use additional software packages. In both cases, the process can be automated.

Documentation and typesetting: Brochures and instruction books are usually created using layout programs and editorial systems. As a result, an archivable PDF can be created at the same time with- out significant extra work. This can either be done using external solutions (rather than using the original program that created the document) or using a print-ready PDF which is often already available in the PDF/X format, the ISO standard for print documents (see page 17).

Creating documents from databases: Many PDF/A files were originally created from databases or were created using XML data. This structured input data of- ten allows you to create PDF/A Conformance Level A documents. You can also convert forms to PDF/A.

Digital document folders: As of PDF/A-3, source documents can also be embedded directly into a PDF/A file in their original format. This eliminates time-consuming hybrid archiving processes in which additional documents (Excel tables, image files, CAD drawings) had to be managed separately from the archived PDF/A file in their original formats. Thanks to PDF/A-3, all relevant information is now contained within a single file.

Team collaboration: PDF/A-3 in particular is exceptionally powerful and flexible when used within modern collaboration frameworks. Its hybrid approach means that each document can contain the current working version of a document and the final – archive-ready – version. As a result, PDF/A-3 provides ideal support for all the most important functions within a Microsoft SharePoint environment, for example. In particular, this includes collaborative work on documents as well as distribution and archiving.


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Tags: E-mail archiving, archival format, archive migration, collaboration, documentation
Categories: PDF, PDF/A