About the contributor
PDF Association

Mission Statement: To promote Open Standards-based electronic document implementations using PDF technology through education, expertise and shared experience for stakeholders worldwide.
More contributions
Interview with Dietrich von Seggern for PDF Days Europe 2017

Who: Dietrich von Seggern Company: callas software GmbH Position: Managing Director PDF Association: The PDF Days Europe will be held in Berlin again. Do you have any personal relationship with Berlin? Dietrich von Seggern: Yes, definitely. I first cam …

Interop workshops: building a test matrix

How will the PDF 2.0 interop workshops work? This article explains the process of building the test-matrix to establish possibilities for pair-wise testing.

PDF Days Europe agenda looks to the future

Berlin. Those interested in the PDF format can now register for this year’s PDF Days Europe in Berlin. A comprehensive agenda awaits, with over 35 contributions on 15 and 16 May covering all aspects of PDF technology. The focus will be on the PDF Assoc …

SHA-1 is gone… and it’s deprecated in PDF 2.0 as well

As we reported yesterday, those in the crypto world are well-aware that Google and others have proven that SHA-1, the venerable cryptographic hash function standard, is dead. The consequences, however, are yet to be determined. Somewhere, it is safe to …

PDF Days Europe 2017 – Secure your ticket now!

With over 35 informative sessions across a wide range of topics, including the dramatic new “Camelot2” project, this year’s PDF Days event is especially relevant as we look forward into the future of PDF technology.

PDF/UA becomes an American national standard

Cover of the ANSI version of PDF/UA.The ISO standard for accessible PDF files is just 24 pages. Until now, this short document was available from the ISO and its member bodies at a cost of 88 Swiss Francs (about USD $90), or from individual ISO member organizations at some similar price.

As of March 28, 2016, PDF/UA is available from AIIM for USD $15.

PDF/UA conforming files make PDF content accessible to users with disabilities in compliance with federal and state regulations. When documents conforming to PDF/UA are supported by the user’s viewer software, the standard enables enhanced use of PDF in smart phones, desktop applications, search engines, taxonomy systems and more.

Although Portable Document Format technology is now 23 years old, and an ISO standard, vendors still differ substantially in terms of their attention to the format’s various features, including the “Tagged PDF” feature necessary for accessibility. PDF/UA solves this problem.

PDF/UA was created to provide a common, technically-specific understanding of what constitutes accessible PDF documents Since the specification’s original publication almost four years ago we’ve seen a remarkable degree of investment in tagged PDF by software developers, accessibility professionals and organizations worldwide. Mandates to produce accessible documents are proliferating in government and government-contractor organizations in North America, Europe, Australia and beyond. In the larger economy, accessibility best-practices for websites and electronic documents increasingly specify WCAG 2.0 for HTML/CSS/JavaScript content and video, and PDF/UA for electronic documents.

Based on the Access Board’s 2015 draft, it’s reasonable to expect that new Section 508 and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations in the United States will leverage PDF/UA to drive development of accessibility solutions for line-of-business content across the economy.

PDF/UA is consistent with WCAG 2.0, but far more technically specific, and provides a clear-cut means of affirming that a given PDF document meets high standards for accessibility.

Now available from AIIM as a PDF/UA-conforming document for just $15, the new ANSI edition of PDF/UA is just 17% the cost of the ISO original. It is anticipated that reducing the cost in this manner will serve to promote awareness of PDF/UA, and the development of technically consistent, standards-based approaches to the accessibility challenge in the years to come.

Going forwards, both document creation and consumption vendors are likely to hear more requests about their support of PDF/UA.

Purchase ANSI / AIIM / ISO 14289-1:2016 from AIIM.org.

Categories: PDF/UA, Standards development