PDF’s mindshare

How significant is PDF in itself? How do people think about PDF? Is PDF a proxy term for “digital document”? In an update to his 2018 presentation on “PDF statistics”, PDF Association CEO Duff Johnson reviews some key facts and statistics about PDF’s utilization, popular awareness and reliance on the format.

Making more sense of PDF structures in the wild at scale

This is a follow-on talk from our 2021 PDF Days presentation on the File Observatory. Our team built the File Observatory to support Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)’s SafeDocs program by enabling parser developers to understand features of PDFs in the wild at scale. In the first part of our presentation, we’ll offer an overview … Read more

Smart Legal Contracts and PDF

Smarter contracts and blockchain technologies are already transforming business processes across commercial, legal and financial sectors and yet “We still approach contracts in much the same way as we have done for centuries. Decades old software such as PDF and Microsoft Word is used to create and store agreements in a digital format, but they … Read more

Facing a pandemic: hit and miss of PDF, how could we have done better?

France had one of the most restrictive laws during the pandemic. Long before vaccine passports were available, people had to fill out, sign, and carry certificates when they left their homes. In addition, while PDF was the electronic file format available by default, the government was using a basic, outdated version of it. The experience … Read more

What’s holding PDF back?

PDF has long become the de facto format for exchanging print-oriented documents on the Web, and for a good reason: it works, and reliably so! However, as the lowest common denominator it is an end-of-line format, and is under constant threat from HTML, which is reflowable, more flexible and, by definition, editable. Enhancements to PDF … Read more

What’s stopping PDF from ubiquitous acceptance?

PDFs have been around for nearly 30 years now and the very ability to ensure perfect representation of graphic content has led the PDF format to become a very powerful ISO standard.  The comprehensive specification of fonts, device-independent colorspaces, transparency, and numerous pre-press features has come to guarantee faithful reproduction of authored content.  When coupled … Read more

All about the PDF Association

How do organizations and individuals using PDF technology benefit from membership in the PDF Association? Subjects covered include: Why the PDF ecosystem matters Technical benefits, including access to ISO draft documents and developer communities Marketing benefits, including articles, products and other content on pdfa.org With staff in Europe, the US and Australia the PDF Association … Read more

A Specification for using PDF to Package and Represent Email

US government and academic preservationists are looking to PDF to take on the fight against email degradation. The EA-PDF (Email Archives in PDF) concept is under development; a document spelling out requirements for archiving email messages, folders or accounts as ISO 32000-2 compliant files. If implemented, EA-PDF would help people preserve email attributes that are … Read more

Automate office files to PDF

Most office files are created with Microsoft Office and quality of conversion is defined by the degree to which it is the similar to what this suite creates – at least for visual appearance. What limitations do alternative converters have for Word, Excel or PowerPoint documents? What about emails created or received with Outlook? What … Read more

PDF and Open Source

PDF is all around us and successfully drives many processes. But there are many circumstances when using a commercial software is not an option – for many possible reasons. What can be done in such situations? There seems to be one simple answer for these situations: just use open source! But those that had to … Read more