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Don’t risk losing users’ trust: future-proof your PDF implementations

July 2024 by Peter Wyatt (PDF Association)

To avoid confusing and frustrating users, applications can and should be robustly prepared for significant changes to PDF – with end user messaging in mind – well before files start to occur in the marketplace.

As PDF’s technical community continues its work on defining a future version of PDF it must consider the impact of these changes on today’s software, and how implementers can best support end users.

Web browsers offer a lot of relevant experience in terms of how they manage similar incompatibility issues, including missing functionality. For example, “reporting to a user” does not always have to be via a primary user interface dialog or prominent banner but might be via logs, a status bar symbol, or an on-screen widget.

The key point is that an end-user must have some means of learning that an incompatibility has been detected between their software and the document they’ve opened and are (presumably) trying to understand!

PDF has always been and always will be fully extensible; PDF software should always be written to reflect that fact.

Preparing for PDF files “from the future”

July 2024 by Peter Wyatt (PDF Association)
Article


These synthetic files are intended for user experience and human-computer interaction (HCI) specialists to assess the behavior of their current generation of PDF applications to ensure that appropriate user-centric messages … Read more

Peter Wyatt
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June 2024 by PDF Association staff (PDF Association)
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A new members-only resource supports forensic experts tasks with examination of PDF files.

Announcement

June 2024 by PDF Association staff (PDF Association)
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What do “first class companies” do? Japanese media covers the PDF Association in Tokyo. Firefox adds experimental alt. text generation … Read more

PDF in the Wild

June 2024 by Peter Wyatt (PDF Association)
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Peter Wyatt’s latest article focuses on improving the user experience for website visitors needing to access specific content in longer … Read more

Article

June 2024 by PDF Association staff (PDF Association)
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Private data is everywhere is in almost every broadly-adopted file format. This Application Note answers questions about private data in … Read more

PDF Association news

May 2024 by PDF Association staff (PDF Association)
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Microsoft deepens its investment in Tagged PDF. We talked PDF with NISO. Both Android and iOS improve PDF handling. A … Read more

PDF in the Wild

May 2024 by PDF Association staff (PDF Association)
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While PDF/X establishes rules for representing page content for print purposes, it doesn’t describe the specific requirements of the finished … Read more

PDF Association news

May 2024 by Peter Wyatt (PDF Association)
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LOGIN REQUIRED: These synthetic files are intended for user experience and human-computer interaction (HCI) specialists to assess the behavior of … Read more

Article, For members only

May 2024 by PDF Association staff (PDF Association)
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The latest ISO Extension to PDF 2.0 offers backwards-compatible integrity protection via Message Authentication Code (MAC).

Announcement, PDF Association news

May 2024 by Peter Wyatt (PDF Association)
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Accurately understanding the kinds of data that can be in a PDF and how it is stored can be very … Read more

Article

May 2024 by PDF Association staff (PDF Association)
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The second PDF Week event of 2024 arrives May 6-10 in Tokyo! Members can attend remotely if they cannot join … Read more

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