Academic Acrobat – Tips and tricks for getting more done

Chances are that in schools and universities these days you are reading and generating more PDF documents than ever and there’s a good chance that many of these documents are being printed out to paper like they have been since the dawn of the digital publishing age. As creatures of habit, hitting the print button works well for many situations, but that’s so 20th century. Why are you  re-using, citing, re-keying, and editing, much like our parents did back in the day when they were in the hallowed halls of academia? It doesn’t have to be that way especially with Adobe Acrobat X.

SInce Acrobat X Pro was released one year ago,  It has received numerous awards across the knowledge worker industries.  I have been working with several university departmental initiatives on moving towards a more green and sustainable approach with respect to printing to paper. These faculty and students were also interested in becoming more efficient in the process of gathering and digesting more and more PDF content and want to improve the quality of their work.. PDF preserves the integrity of the original source file while making it easy to exchange and distribute information. Using Acrobat’s powerful toolset, you can do more in less time.

Based on these requests and trends, I have put together some video tutorials showing some of the top “tips and tricks” that are sure to improve your academic efforts and make you a more efficient “knowledge worker.” I have started posting them on YouTube for easy access and reference. Here’s a summary of these available now. In these videos, I have focused on the use of acrobat for annotation and mark-up as well as re-use and combining content from different sources.  There will be more to come in the new year. I hope these tips and tricks help you recover more time in your academic pursuits for doing all those other things on your list this holiday season!

Here you go.

  1. An overview of Acrobat Note Taking and mark-up tools. Check out the different ways you can mark-up and annotate a typical document for improving your organization and productivity.
  2. Academic Productivity with Acrobat – Learn how to enhance a PDF document with Adobe Acrobat Professional to streamline your workflow using highlighting, document snapshots, comment summary, and page combining tricks.
  3. Note taking made easy part 1 – working with the essential markup tools in Acrobat. Learn about the useful markup tools that you can customize for use in your note taking and annotation of PDF documents.
  4. Note taking made easy part 2 – more useful mark-up tools - Acrobat has even more tools for use in note taking such as the attachment tool, the recording tool, and the stamps tool; all great for your academic research and collaboration.

If you have any comments or requests for upcoming tips and tricks, please leave a note. In the meantime be sure to check out the Acrobat User community website.

 

Acrobat X.1 update. Get yours now!

The long awaited update to Acrobat X is finally here. Why should you update? No matter what your role in your institution; whether administrative, instructional, IT support, or student, there is something for everyone who uses Acrobat in education. Here are some compelling reasons:

Peace of mind: Acrobat is one of only three applications in the world that are “sandboxed”. This is a protected mode that dramatically reduces exposure from viruses and malware that may be lurking in files. Acrobat Professional X, Adobe Reader X, Google Chrome, and Microsoft Office 2010 are the only applications that offer this. This helps reduce the need for unscheduled security patches, and reduces the amount of time that you and your IT team spend on damage control in the field.

Microsoft Office 2010 64 bit support: Now Acrobat Pro X.1 supports MS office. Why is this important? Whether you use the 32 bit or 64 bit version of Office, the PDFMaker that is installed by Acrobat Pro X in the MS Office Application toolbar ribbon is the ONLY way you should be converting your Office docs into PDF. This will dramatically improve the richness of your PDFs ensuring that your documents and workflow efficiencies contain the most intelligence and are compliant with the latest PDF specifications.

Support for the latest browsers: View PDF documents directly in the most popular browsers for maximum viewing convenience and interactivity. Acrobat X.1 supports the latest versions of the most popular browsers. Supported browsers on Mac are Safari. Supported browsers on Windows are, IE, Firefox, and Google Chrome.

In conclusion: Acrobat X.1 can save you tine and money. How?

  • More secure PDF viewing.
  • Complete support for the Adobe Dynamic PDF environment
  • Productivity gains when working with Microsoft Office Applications (Windows only).
  • Easier deployment that lowers the total cost of ownership

For a detailed list of Acrobat support for PDFMaker and Web Browser support visit this link http://kb2.adobe.com/cps/333/333504.html

Get the latest Adobe updates at http://www.adobe.com/downloads/updates/

If you already own Acrobat Pro X, you definitely want to update to X.1. If you don’t own Acrobat Pro X, check out all the new features and get a free 30 day trial at http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat.html

If you are using an older Adobe Reader, or a free or third party PDF reader, get peace of mind and compliance with the latest PDF specifications to take full advantage of Adobe Acrobat’s  Dynamic PDF environment. Download the Free Adobe Reader X.1 at http://get.adobe.com/reader/

To learn more about Acrobat be sure to visit AcrobatUsers.com at http:// www.acrobatusers.com

 

Coming January 25, 2011: “Ask The Xpert” Twitterviews and win a free copy of Acrobat X!

Join us for Acrobat’s first #Twitterview ‘Ask the Xpert’ series on 1/25 at 10am w/product managers Dave & Chris http://adobe.ly/ik4idY

With all the great questions you have been asking about Acrobat here and via Twitter, we wanted to dedicate some time to answer your questions with a new Twitterview Q&A series we are launching. The first kicks off next week: “Ask The Xpert,” on Tuesday, January 25 from 10 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Pacific, our hosts are the Acrobat team’s own Chris French and Dave Stromfeld.

What are Twitterviews? It’s simply an interview conducted in Twitter, where you are the interviewer, and our special guests will answer your Acrobat product-related questions. Are you wondering about how to use Action Wizard? Curious about creating PDF Portfolios? It’s fair game here. We have a dedicated hashtag, #Acroview, that you can use when asking your questions in our Twitter page (@Acrobat ). As an added incentive, all users who ask a question for Tuesday’s Twitterview will be entered into a random drawing to win a free copy of Acrobat X Pro!

Acrobat X is Here!

The wait is over. Acrobat X is available now. You can begin right away to be more innovative, to create and share higher quality, dynamic content, and drive tighter collaboration and productivity across your institution. And you won’t be alone. Already customers in a variety of businesses are extolling the power of Acrobat X and how it’s helping them get more done.

Try out the new powerful new Acrobat X features like guided Actions, which simplify multi-step document preparation and publishing processes. Save PDF files as Microsoft Word documents. Create amazing content using the completely new customization capabilities in PDF Portfolios to unify multiple file types into compelling presentations. And now that collaboration has been enhanced further with Microsoft SharePoint integration, institutions can be sure of the consistency of their PDF documents across their businesses. And the new, intuitive user interface is making Acrobat X a tool for everyone.

Sign up now for the Nov 4 Adobe Acrobat X Pro eSeminar for education

Acrobat 10 PrefessionalI will be presenting an eSeminar on November 4 at 10 AM PT (1PM ET) that will highlight the new features that make Acrobat Pro X invaluable in educational settings. Whether you are in K-12 or Higher Education, the new streamlined interface and amazing new features will improve the way you teach, collaborate, share, and present. The new PDF portfolio environment in Acrobat X Pro makes integrating rich media and web content as well as posting ePortfolio collections as websites a snap. Acrobat X Pro has features that will save you, your institution, and your students time, money, and resources while improving workflows and building essential 21st century skills. You never knew Acrobat could do so much. Come see what it can do for you!

Sign up here!

Acrobat X is Here!

The New Acrobat X is finally here! Acrobat X image

What can it do for education? Here is a quick list of new and improved features:

New user interface

  • The Interface tool pane brings top user needs out front
  • Customizable Tool Bar
  • Tools Pane reveals most useful tools to improve productivity
  • Tools and Tasks are easier to access
  • HUD display provides more real estate for viewing

Amazing document repurposing

  • New export options allow for Word and Excel options including headers, footers, and worksheets
  • New scanning engine improves accuracy and file size
  • Efficient tagging and reflow ensure viewing and access on a variety of screens

A more versatile collaboration environment

  • Commenting tools are in a convenient location in UI
  • Markup extends to video and 3D in composite PDFs
  • Reader X users can use sticky notes and highlight tools
  • SharePoint is fully supported so PDFs can be checked in and out  as well as part of an Acrobat workflow.

The next generation of PDF Portfolios

  • New Portfolio environment  built on Flex 4
  • New Support for Accessibility and MSAA compliant devices.
  • Easy to customize AX for user – background image, themes, header
  • Developers can create new layouts with plug-in for Flash Builder
  • Creatives can create new visual themes with Illustrator templates and Flash Pro
  • Allow addition of Web content including Embed Code for video to be viewed directly in Portfolio
  • Save PDF Portfolios as websites and placed on web for preview in browser before deciding to download.
  • Perfect compliment to LMS/CMS systems
  • Each PDF’s page can be previewed without opening actual document. When document is opened from portfolio, it is fully dynamic.

Guided Actions - Guided Actions are scriptable batch processes that can easily be made and shared so that groups of users can benefit from improved compliance and best practices

  • Great for group efficiency
  • Supports Java Script
  • Great to ensure best practices across the institution

Enterprise deployment for Windows and Macintosh environments.

  • Windows deployment is made easier with an improved customization wizard
  • Macintosh clients can now be deployed using the popular Remote Desktop application.

In the coming weeks check back for more previews including tips, tricks, and tutorials!

Also be sure to visit www.AcrobatUsers.com for the latest links to everything Acrobat.

Acrobat in Education Webinar – August 18th

Wednesday August 18 at 1PM ET, I will be presenting a special Webinar on using Acrobat in education at AcrobatUsers.com.

If you’re a student, educator, researcher or school administrator, discover the many ways you can use Acrobat workflows in the world of education. Find out how you can benefit from Adobe PDF workflows that simplify the creation of everything from project submissions, course packs and presentations to dissertations and portfolios. You can sign up for this Here

Check out the Free Adobe eSignature Service

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Adobe’s new cloud-based eSignature Service was announced recently as a convenient way to get verifiable digital signatures on PDF documents quickly, securely, and conveniently. This service is based on our LiveCycle server-side technology that supports digital signatures and workflows.

The Service is easy to set up and use. All you need is a free Adobe ID. If you already have one or an Acrobat.com account, you are ready to use the service.

Here’s how it works:

  • Sign in at http:/esign.adobe.com
  • Upload you PDF document to be signed(100MB max)
  • Specify the email addresses of the others that need to sign the document
  • Select a due date
  • Enter a message in the email dialog box
  • Sign the document. Recipients are notified that the document is ready for signature. Each party is able to review the document on the website and then can click to sign.

All parties will be notified when the document has been fully executed and can download a certified copy to archive. This new service has great potential for improving efficiencies and providing certified documents for a wide number of Education-specific requirements.

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Wrap Up Your School Year in an Acrobat 9 PDF Portfolio

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As the school year winds down, its time to get organized and one of the best places to start is with the files on your computer. All that hard work that went into creating and submitting assignments, reports, projects, and just about anything digital shouldn’t be filed away in multiple locations or directories only to be forgotten or lost over time. Chances are you have the tool you need right on your desktop, Adobe Acrobat 9 Professional.

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Use Acrobat 9 Professional to assemble a unified PDF document

Adobe Acrobat 9 Professional has many useful features for Educators and students. One that is perfect for building a unified PDF document from two or more individual documents takes advantage of a little known technique for dragging and dropping pages directly from one document on to another and then adding a unified set of headers and footers.This technique can save valuable time and produce a very useful document that can be updated as needed.

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