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Books > Computers & Technology > Databases & Big Data > Data Processing > B00IV3J23O
  1. Developing with PDF: Dive Into the Portable Document Format
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  2. Developing with PDF: Dive Into the Portable Document Format

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PDF is becoming the standard for digital documents worldwide, but it’s not easy to learn on your own. With capabilities that let you use a variety of images and text, embed audio and video, and provide links and navigation, there’s a lot to explore. This practical guide helps you understand how to work with PDF to construct your own documents, troubleshoot problems, and even build your own tools.

You’ll also find best practices for producing, manipulating, and consuming PDF documents. In addition, this highly approachable reference will help you navigate the official (and complex) ISO documentation.

  • Learn how to combine PDF objects into a cohesive whole
  • Use PDF’s imaging model to create vector and raster graphics
  • Integrate text, and become familiar with fonts and glyphs
  • Provide navigation within and between documents
  • Use annotations to overlay or incorporate additional content
  • Build interactive forms with the Widget annotation
  • Embed related files such as multimedia, 3D content, and XML files
  • Use optional content to enable non-printing graphics
  • Tag content with HTML-like structures, including paragraphs and tables

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Leonard Rosenthol
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Kindle eBook
O'Reilly Media
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O'Reilly Media
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

I found this book a very useful introduction while writing my first PDF code.

Even with this book, I found it occasionally necessary to consult the PDF specification. There's a free copy of that on Adobe's website (at [...] However, the complete specification is not a good introduction.

The sample code in this introduction uses PDF operators. These operators are named for brevity rather than readability. If you're trying to understand the code, sometimes it's necessary to back up in the text until you find where the operator is first used and described. The book would be improved by a table of these operators mapped to descriptions. The index includes items for the operators. However, the index requires two steps: finding the operator in the index, amidst many other items, and then finding the page it references.

There is such a table in the PDF specification on Adobe's website, in Annex A. Printing that and having it next to this introduction can be... Read more
This book gives a clear and concise overview of the PDF format and it's internals: how it's structured, what you can do with it, and how you do these things, all illustrated with example PDF snippets.

The level of detail of the book is just right, explaining just what you need to know to get a decent understanding of how things work, and even how you would go about writing applications that use PDF. Had it had one level more of detail, the book would probably be close the ISO standard, be too boring to read, and only of interest to a very limited set of people writing PDF consumers and producers. I'm very glad the author did not fall into the trap of rewriting the PDF reference.

One thing that felt missing to me (and which was explicitly mentioned as omitted) is how fonts are embedded in PDFs. The author may have good reasons for not including this (maybe it's tedious and uninteresting), but it would have been nice to have the reason listed. That said, the text... Read more
Just by looking at the Table of Contents of Developing with PDF, I knew I didn't know didly squat about PDF. Oh sure, I've used it to read PDF documents, as well to save Word documents in this particular format. But I didn't know how to create a new PDF document, even though I have Adobe Acrobat Pro, which is part of the Adobe Master Collection CS4, which I acquired while attending school at ITT-Tech.

Mr. Rosenthol covers it all; syntax, imaging model, images, text and navigation to mention just a few items from the Table of Contents. I didn't know, for instance, that you can embed files such as multimedia and 3D into a PDF document. I didn't know about annotations, acroforms, metadata or standards. Looks like I have a lot of reading and catching up to do.
I truly appreciate Mr. Rosenthol's effort to teach us what we need to know about PDF documents. Regardless of whether you use Adobe Acrobat for professional reasons, for reading and just want to know more about it... Read more
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