We’ve done PDF Day events and technical conferences across Europe, in the US, in Australia, and elsewhere. This Electronic Document Conference is the first PDF Association event that’s open to all technologies pertaining to documents. It’s about explor …Happy new logo!
2006: The PDF/A Competence Center A new year brings new things, and 2019 is no exception! The “four red blocks” logo was first created for the PDF/A Competence Center in 2006. When that organization became the PDF Association in 2011, the design was ad …Save-The-Date: PDF Day France, Toulouse, April 4, 2019
PDF Day France will be the first French-speaking event of the PDF Association, organised by our member ORPALIS. It will take place in Toulouse which is the home ground of Airbus and we are very happy that Airbus will present a case study around its usage of PDF in their document management environment!Electronic Document Conference: Call for Papers
Prospective presenters at the Electronic Document Conference 2019 are invited to submit high-quality original proposals for 25-minute presentations on subjects of interest to developers and technical product managers concerned with electronic document implementations.Have we passed ‘peak PDF’?
How do we gain insight into how users’ views of documents are shifting? Google Trends is an increasingly interesting source of high-level marketplace data. By aggregating Google’s search data over time, reporting a term’s popularity as compared with all other searches.
PDF/UA is the ISO standard published as ISO 14289 in July 2012 defining the creation and processing of accessible PDF. This article is directed primarily at implementers, quality assurance (QA) and technical product managers interested in supporting accessibility in PDF. It describes the purpose and function of the Matterhorn Protocol, and explains how developers may use this document to address PDF/UA conformance in a systematic and reliable manner.
As a format, PDF was designed to provide reliable, high-quality visual representation of any two-dimensional content, regardless of peculiarity of design, source format or viewing environment. PDF does this better than any other technology; indeed, it has no serious competition.
Accessibility, however, is a broad and complex subject. In addition, the flexibility of PDF forces developers to cover an exceptionally wide range of use-cases. At the same time, the relative vagueness of Tagged PDFs definition in ISO 32000-1 has not encouraged third-party development.
The PDF/UA standard provides developers with a clear road map to understanding how to do Tagged PDF right, but nonetheless requires substantial research for those who arent already familiar with accessibility requirements. Most major PDF software developers are willing to implement Tagged PDF, but they want to know whats really important. Thats where the Matterhorn Protocol fits in.
A PDF Association publication, the Matterhorn Protocol specifies all possible ways to fail PDF/UA. As such, its a set of algorithms providing the practical rules for implementing software that creates, processes or presents accessible PDF.
The Matterhorn Protocol helps set priorities in both research and execution. It enables developers not yet fully familiar with every detail in PDF/UA to get to work right away, accelerating all aspects of code and product development.
The basic approach for implementing the Matterhorn Protocol is to map the Failure Conditions to the various tasks implied by the specific word-processing, content extraction or other context.
PDF creation is the ideal place to implement PDF/UA conformance for many reasons, not least because so many checkpoints requiring human validation may be inferred from the structures created by the author. The PDF generator must ensure that semantic tables in the source, for example, are properly tagged with table tags and attributes in the output PDF.
Organizations that adopt accessibility standards want the capacity to check the accessibility status of their websites and PDF files. Implementers will need to consider how to make the human validation component as streamlined as possible while accommodating the variety of cases the software may encounter. See Access for Alls PDF Accessibility Checker, PAC 2.0, for the first software implementation of a PDF/UA validator based on the Matterhorn Protocol.
Its always preferable to re-create a PDF than to edit an existing file to ensure good tagging, but its not always possible. In many cases, existing tagged PDF files that fail human validation must be corrected rather than re-created from the source application. Depending on the precise design objectives, this sort of implementation can range from trivial to challenging. Its relatively easy to allow users to efficiently check and correct alternative text attributes in Figure tags. Its much less easy to produce a graphical user interface (GUI) allowing users to easily and reliably change the set of content enclosed within Figure tags.
Perhaps the most challenging task in the world of accessible PDF would be that of bringing untagged PDF files into conformance with PDF/UA. For such cases, human validation of logical reading order and valid structure type selection is difficult to avoid. Here, the Matterhorn Protocol provides both a means of verifying conformance and a way to document the human effort required to achieve it.
When PDF viewing implementations can rely on files validated by the Matterhorn Protocol end-users may be assured of a high-quality result in applications that use Tagged PDF. These include, besides the obvious case of Assistive Technology (AT), mobile devices, context extraction, search engines, business intelligence systems and other applications utilizing semantic information.
Designed by and for developers, the Matterhorn Protocol is a practical guide to achieving PDF/UA conformance you can start implementing today. Download the Matterhorn Protocol now.
Download this article as a PDF/UA file.