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September 20, 2010 /How-To's /

Acrobat in a “Flash”!

Earlier posts here have covered cool capabilities in Acrobat 9 such as PDF Portfolios and redaction, so I’d like to spend some time talking about one of the other great features introduced in Acrobat 9—native support for Flash, our multimedia platform used to build animation, video and interactivity with the Web. We’re also gearing up for a great preconference lab at Adobe MAX on Sunday, Oct. 24, which will take a look at using Flash to create PDF Portfolio layouts, so this is a great opportunity to fill you in on the basics!

So what’s Flash in Acrobat all about? Instead of calling out to an external player in your browser or desktop, you can add Flash content (.swf files) in a PDF, play it via the built-in Flash Player for Acrobat and share it with anyone who has Adobe Reader 9. Also, it doesn’t matter what video format you’re working with; Acrobat 9 Pro Extended can convert a variety of video formats to Flash Video so there’s no need for a separate player.

A number of savvy Acrobat users have taken these capabilities a step further and created mini-applications or “Flash Widgets”, to deliver content such as interactive maps and games that play within a PDF document; I think of them as portable applications. Lori DeFurio offers up a great overview of Flash Widgets inside PDF documents on Adobe TV.

Recently, I wrote about a YouTube widget I created for Acrobat that allows you to stream video from YouTube directly into PDFs. Be sure to check out this article for directions on how to download the YouTube widget and how to add YouTube videos to a PDF.

How have you been using Flash in Acrobat? We’d love to hear about your projects and success stories! Again, for you Flash enthusiasts, developers and newbies alike, we hope to see you at the Acrobat/Flash Builder 4 preconference lab at MAX. More info here!

Joel Geraci, Acrobat Technical Evangelist

Categories: How-To's