Monday, June 14, 2010

Why not create a PDF of your own?

My first project at IFS was about applying PDF/A standards to IFS reports. This project involved a conversion of PDF version. For that I needed a some kind of Java library which will provide me a set of functionality to perform a conversion.

While searching for few hours I found this wonderful Java library called iText. It has both Java and C# .NET versions.

You can use iText to:
  • Serve PDF to a browser
  • Generate dynamic documents from XML files or databases
  • Use PDF's many interactive features
  • Add bookmarks, page numbers, watermarks, etc.
  • Split, concatenate, and manipulate PDF pages
  • Automate filling out of PDF forms
  • Add digital signatures to a PDF file
  • and much more...

You can download iText binaries and source files from here.
 iText API from here.
An excellent tutorial on iText can be founded in here.

Create a small PDF file and enjoy seen it's working, if you like to do more work using this that would make my effort even more success.

Introduction to PDF/A Standards

Most of you may not familiar with PDF/A standards, neither me, before four months. So I decided to make a post on this to share what I know about PDF/A.

What is PDF/A?
I am sure at least some of you might got into some troubles if you tried to open PDF documents which are in different fonts,and if matching fonts not installed in your computer.This is because that PDF file does not contain embedded fonts. You can embed fonts that are used in the file at the moment of the creation of the file.
Not only fonts but the colour profiles used, and etc.
PDF/A standards ensure the documents can be reproduced in the exact same way, at any place and even after a long time. Current version is PDF/A-1.

DOs and DONT'S in PDF/A-1

PDF/A-1 files must include:
• Embedded fonts
• Device-independent color
• XMP metadata

PDF/A-1 files may not include:
• Encryption
• LZW Compression
• Embedded files
• External content references
• PDF Transparency
• Multi-media
• JavaScript

Levels of Standards
1.       PDF/A-1a: All the requirements of PDF/A-1b + additionally requires that document structure be included being "tagged
2.       PDF/A-1b: ensuring reliable reproduction of the visual appearance of the document


I hope to put a post on PDF creation, as soon as I got some time. These days I'm busy with my work at IFS and GSoC.