Vortrag: Editable PDF
An Open Standard to Replace Word, InDesign and PowerPoint
Application-native file formats such as Word, InDesign and PPT have always made it difficult to collaborate with others, particularly when using free software. But PDF could replace them all. It is the only visually robust format and is fully open. This talk presents some of the research carried out in making PDF more intelligent with embedded metadata so that it could one day become the standard for all documents, not just those in final form.
Despite the efforts of the Free Software community, formats such as Word, InDesign and PPT are still the de facto exchange formats for non-final documents in business applications. Open formats have not managed to change the status quo, as the argument for businesses to switch has not been convincing enough. At the same time, both open and proprietary editable document formats have a significant weakness: They are not portable, and do not guarantee that a document will look the same when you send it to someone else.
PDF, on the hand, just works. It is the standard for final-version documents in business. It is open and fully documented, which puts Free Software on a level playing field with the competition. It is also powerful enough to represent any content that can be printed. Furthermore, recent developments such as Tagged PDF have begun to add structure to the format to meet the demands of today’s applications.
The Editable PDF Initiative takes this concept one step further and also embeds a layout description of the content, making it possible to fully recreate the visual presentation according to an openly defined specification, which my talk will present in more detail.
We are looking for collaborators to help take this initiative further, promote it by supporting it in common Free Software applications and, in cooperation with the PDF Association, propose it as a future ISO standard.
As an editable format with guaranteed robust visual presentation, Editable PDF will finally provide a convincing argument to encourage users to switch from proprietary formats.