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About the contributor
Martin Bailey

More contributions
Talking about electronic documents

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 2.0 interops help vendors

PDF 2.0 interop USA, 2017 June 12-13In mid-June of this year a number of software vendors with products for creating, editing and consuming PDF files came together in Boston, Massachusetts for a couple of days. The goal was to test our products currently in development against each other’s sample PDF 2.0 files to ensure that we caught any issues before letting those products out into the wild for real users to work with.

For any normal product release we have tens of thousands of sample files collected over several years: those created ourselves as well as those sent in with customer queries or purchased as part of formal test suites. But this is different.

This is testing our code for the features in PDF 2.0; features that are so new that nobody is shipping tools to create files yet. So we’ve been making our own sample files. But if we make sample files to test our own code we can miss issues because the same assumptions get made in the sample and in the code. We need a way to break that bootstrap problem.

And that’s why Global Graphics, in conjunction with the PDF Association, organised and hosted the US interop in Boston in June, just as we had in Cambridge, UK six weeks earlier for the first PDF 2.0 interop event.

Between the two events there was a good turn-out of vendors of leading PDF tools, especially those companies who want to make sure that their customers are ready as the rest of the market starts to roll out support for PDF 2.0 over the next year.

For the US event we’d acted on feedback from the UK event and put JIRA in place as a full tracking system for everyone to file sample files, ask questions and report their results. That made it much easier for all of us to follow what was happening, even though quite a few of the US event ‘attendees’ were actually working remotely. That JIRA instance has now been taken off-line, but we’ve backed up everything from both events and we’re hoping that we’ll be able to transfer the data to a JIRA instance hosted by the PDF Association at some point in the future.

The feedback on both events was good, with most participants saying that the information they’d gained had met their expectations and averaging a score of 4.5 out of 5 for overall value.

As to my own products … let’s just say that if you score an interop on the number of niggly little issues that you find while doing the tests … the Boston event scored pretty high! But that’s the point. Each of those issues that we find and resolve before we ship is an issue that our customers never have to see or deal with. And that’s a very good thing!


Tags: interop, workshop
Categories: PDF 2.0