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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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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.

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.

Members supporting PDF features!

The typical adoption curve for PDF technologies until approximately 2007 tended to track with that of the original PDF developer. Since then the marketplace has shifted; it’s no longer clear that Adobe drivesPDF feature support worldwide. Accordingly, we are happy to report that adoption of PDF 2.0 continues apace, with new vendors announcing their support every month.

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…

PDF/UA – The technological key to the future of customer communication

Industries which exchange large volumes of documents with their customers – financial services, insurance, energy and others – are currently making extensive changes to their communications processes. The emancipated, mobile, highly networked customer of tomorrow demands powerful, personalized customer dialog through a wide range of channels. This can include sending brief updates by SMS, securely mailing digital documents, or storing and editing them using a firm’s cloud-based portal. For maximum user-friendliness on mobile devices, text must be dynamically formatted and displayed using word wrapping and dynamic reflowing. And, in the interests of inclusivity, users with disabilities should be equally able to participate – and where necessary, with the use of assistive technology such as screen readers.

PDF/UA – tagged and barrier-free
Forward-looking businesses are currently redeveloping their communications processes to allow them to produce this new generation of dynamic, accessible business documents, tailored to the customer’s needs, in any volume. The PDF format plays a central role here, with PDF/UA in particular – the internationally certified, verifiable format for universal accessibility (UA) first adopted in 2012 – taking center stage. AIIM and Adobe Systems initiated the PDF/UA project some time ago in order to develop clear technical requirements for the creating universally accessible PDFs, PDF software and assistive technology (such as screen readers). When it comes to digital documents, the PDF format has always been associated with portability and reliability. PDF/UA expands upon these principles to include all users, including those with disabilities – as well as applications that intelligently reuse PDF-based content. This is because, as well as allowing universal access to documents, PDF/UA also provides the “tags” essential to the next generation of digital documents, including all required metadata. Screen readers and smartphones alike can use this information to correctly display multi-column text, tables, images and more.

It’s all about document processes
“Serie M/” from kühn & weyh is one of the first text and output management systems on the market to create valid PDF/UA files – as well as formats such as HTML, AFP, PCL, PDF/A, Postscript, XML and others. The system automatically anchors metadata within the document, describing its structure, paragraphing, headings and so on. Metadata which can only be defined by humans – a content summary, for example, or an image description – can be entered as part of the document or template design process. This proves to be the only practical approach: marking up documents after they are finished is often impossible or far too time-consuming to be reasonable for large volumes of business documents. Forward-looking businesses have already identified the potential that this approach offers and are now integrating it into their document processes, allowing them to lay the foundations for the next generation of mobile documents and position themselves ahead of their market competitors.

Klaus Ganter, CEO of kühn & weyh Software GmbH, said, “When it comes to letting as many people as possible reap the benefits of modern digital communication, PDF is a key technology.”


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Categories: PDF/UA