Recently in PDF Portfolios Category


For those of you interested in scripting PDF Portfolios with the new Acrobat JavaScript “Collection” Object, I’ve created a few example utility scripts to demonstrate the features of the new object.

There are now five basic utility scripts bundled into the one, each one demonstrates a different aspect of working with PDF Portfolios or what the API calls “Collections”. To keep things simple, I’ve copied my earlier posts about my Portfolio Utilities to this page. The new feature that allows you to change the initial view of a Portfolio is at the bottom of the post.

Joel’s PDF Portfolio Utilities Updated for Acrobat X


UPDATE: Now works with Acrobat X

For those of you interested in scripting PDF Portfolios with the new Acrobat JavaScript “Collection” Object, I’ve created a few example utility scripts to demonstrate the features of the new object.

There are three basic utility scripts bundled into the one, each one demonstrates a different aspect of working with PDF Portfolios or what the API calls “Collections”.

Introducing the Billboard Layout


The Billboard Layout was created as an example project for my Developing Custom PDF Portfolio Layouts using Flash Builder 4 series but there’s no reason why non-programmers shouldn’t take advantage of it too. I’ve created a PDF Portfolio template with the Billboard layout already applied that you can download and use.

Billboard Layout with Billboard showing Billboard Layout displaying files

For those of you that miss the Acrobat 9 style Welcome Page, you’ll love the Billboard. I’ve also modified the way that folder navigation works – also to make it work more like Acrobat 9.

Take a look at the Billboard Layout page to download the template and read more about what this new layout does. For reasons I won’t go into on this blog, I’m not permitted to supply the .NAV file for this layout. If you want access to the .NAV, you’ll need to download the source code for the project and build it yourself. Don’t worry, it’s easy and I’ll be posting the source code soon.

Special thanks to the guys over at Ensemble for their help on this one.

Get WOWed by the Acrobat Portfolio SDK

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Take a look at this slightly irreverent “commercial” for the Acrobat Portfolio SDK. We showed this during the Tuesday keynote at MAX. It’s surprisingly informative.

Acrobat Portfolio SDK beta Available on Adobe Labs

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Today at MAX 2010 we conducted a full day hands-on lab showing the new Acrobat Portfolio SDK which is now available on Adobe Labs.

The Acrobat Portfolio SDK provides new developer tools for the Adobe Flash® Builder™ and Adobe Flash Professional environments. Using these tools, developers and designers can now leverage their existing ActionScript and Flex skills to create customized PDF Portfolio layouts (navigators) for use in Adobe Acrobat X. Now the Flash community can target their client deliverables to the PDF ecosystem and Adobe Reader platform.

For an in depth look at what the new SDK is all about read my previous post announcing the MAX preconference session.

Download the Acrobat Portfolio SDK beta from Adobe Labs

Jacob Surber’s Perspectives on PDF Portfolios in Acrobat X

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In this video, Jacob Surber, Senior Experience Designer shares a behind the scenes look at the reinvention of PDF Portfolios in Acrobat X. If you’re curious about all that you can do with the new Adobe Acrobat Portfolio SDK, listen to what Jacob has to say then sign up for the “Using Flash Builder 4 to Create Custom PDF Portfolio Layouts” preconference at MAX 2010.

Register Now

What Developers Need to Know About Acrobat X


Note: I’ve updated the content in this post and turned it into a static page. Please see the Developers Guide to Acrobat X in the list of guides to the left for the most current information.

Yesterday, Adobe announced Acrobat X and there are a lot of big changes and a lot of great new stuff for developers to play with. With the help of Leonard Rosenthol, PDF Standards Architect, PDF guru and developer extraordinaire, I’ve compiled a list of the top things developers need to know about the new version.

MAX 2010 Preconference for Flash Builder Developers


For the first time, Adobe Acrobat has a preconference lab at MAX and it’s going to be a great one. Why? Because now Acrobat is even more fully embracing the Flash Platform, Flash Designers and Flash Builder Developers. The preconference lab takes place Sunday, October 24th 2010 – look for the preconference session below then keep reading for a description of what we’ll cover.

Using Flash Builder 4 to Create Custom PDF Portfolio Layouts

Leverage your ActionScript or Flash design skills to build custom PDF Portfolio layouts. This hands-on lab will introduce you to a new set of tools for developing PDF Portfolio layouts in Flash Builder 4. The PDF Portfolio Layout SDK and Flash Builder plug-in support the process of creating, debugging, and packaging these layouts. Clients will be amazed by the rich user experience you can create for assembling content and communications as part of your brand or design services.

Hopefully you already know what a PDF Portfolio is but if not, you can watch this video on Adobe TV to get a good overview of this cool new capability in Acrobat 9.


Acrobat 9 comes with a default set of PDF Portfolio Layouts. These are great for bundling up a set of files and sending them around as a single PDF file. There are some basic features that allow you to customize headers and a welcome screen as well as the ability to apply different color palettes. But, with Acrobat 9.1, we introduced a rich ActionScript API that can be used to create interactive, highly branded custom PDF Portfolio layouts or “Navigators”, as they are referred to in the API.

That was phase one.

Phase Two:

At MAX 2010, well be introducing a beta version of a new set of tools that plug into Flash Builder 4 to support the process of creating, debugging, and packaging PDF Portfolio Layouts that have even more capabilities than previously available. Users will be able to experience your new enhanced PDF Portfolio Layouts in a future release of Adobe Reader 9 that will be available when these tools are released.

The New Project Wizard:
The New Project Wizard is an extension that automates the process of creating a basic navigator project.

After running the wizard, you’ll have a basic navigator with all the code and resources you need to compile, package and deploy for use in Acrobat, it’s basically identical to one of the Layouts that we ship with Acrobat, so you know it’s been tested and is ready to go.

The Debug Launcher:

The Debug Launcher is a Flash Builder launch configuration type that has been customized to support the running and debugging of navigator projects in a Previewer application.

The Previewer Application:

The Previewer Application is a simulation of the Acrobat and Reader PDF Portfolio runtime. It allows you to test your Layout in various flavors of Acrobat and in Reader with a virtual PDF that has different permission bits. It even lets you test your custom properties, metadata and localization strings, all without loading your Layout into Acrobat itself.

The Export Wizard:

The Export Wizard packages all of the needed navigator resources into a single .nav file.

Pushing the Envelope:

Finally, all of the custom components that we use in the Layouts that ship with Acrobat are available for you to either use as-is or extend. This opens up opportunities to customize a PDF Portfolio Layout if you are a Flash Builder expert or just getting started. The image below is a customized PDF Portfolio Layout running in the Preview Application.

What’s in it for Flash Designers?

Because these tools are built on Flash Builder 4 and use the new skinning model, Flash Professional Designers can use their existing skills to create “Visual Themes” or skins for all of the skinnable components in the Acrobat Portfolio SDK. If you know how to skin a video player, you can skin these components – it’s that easy.

Please join us and learn about these great new tools. See the Preconference page at the MAX web site.

The PDF Portfolio Exchange is Open on

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Whether you are a fan of assembling multiple files and formats into a
PDF Portfolio, or even if you haven’t yet tapped into this powerful
capability within Acrobat 9, the just-launched PDF Portfolio Exchange on offers you new opportunities to get more out of PDF Portfolios.

The PDF Portfolio Exchange provides an easy way to upload your
templates and layouts to share with others. And if you are looking for
guidance on how to create your first PDF Portfolio and to understand
the many benefits for you and your users, the Exchange offers free
downloadable templates
and tutorials to simplify the task.

Go to the PDF Portfolio Exchange on

Calling all Flex Developers

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In case you haven’t heard, Adobe Acrobat 9 has an ActionScript API for PDF Portfolios.

Learn it and make yourself stand out from other Flex developers. The Adobe Acrobat PDF Portfolio Navigator Developer Contest may be your opportunity to get your work reviewed directly by some of the top brand agencies and RIA design firms in the world. In the process, you can also win some great prizes.