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New Enterprise IT Tools for Adobe Acrobat and Reader

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To help IT professionals, we are releasing a number of these resources free of charge, but without an official support program. Like other technologies on Adobe Labs, these tools are not finished products, but rather beta or prototype utilities that may work in your particular environment.

The following list comprises all of the resources that are currently available to download. More tools/utilities are expected to be added in the future.

JavaScript Blacklist Framework for Adobe Acrobat or Reader — This utility allows IT to modify the JS API blacklist for any Acrobat product. It allows simple visual inspection and modification of tBlacklist in the registry’s HKLM hive without opening and editing the registry manually.

Multi-User Reader Desktop (MURD) — The MURD tool allows IT to install multiple Reader versions, create custom file extensions and mime types, and control the version that opens what type of file.

You can find these tools on Adobe Labs

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In the past two weeks, it has come to light that Dutch certificate authority DigiNotar suffered a serious security breach in which a hacker generated more than 500 rogue SSL certificates and had access to DigiNotar’s services, including many that were relied upon specifically by the Dutch government for key citizen and commercial services. The full extent of the attack is still not clear.

Last week, many of the major browser vendors removed DigiNotar certificates from their list of trusted certificates, and in turn, the Dutch government renounced trust in DigiNotar and took over certificate operations at the company.

Read what this means for Adobe customers at the Security Matters blog

This Isn’t Working

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I hear “This isn’t working” from frustrated customers on a fairly regular basis. Most of the time it’s because a particular PDF file isn’t behaving the way that they expect it to. So, with the recent release of the “Compatibility Advisory Regarding Adobe Reader plug-in and Acrobat plug-in with Safari 5.1“, I thought I’d address a few broader compatibility issues that may arise when working with PDF files.


But first… Yes – I’m biased – I work for Adobe. So I’ll try to stick to just the facts in this article and let everyone come to their own conclusions. I’m also not going to cover the obvious compatibility issues that are inherent with PDF Portfolios, Multimedia and other Flash dependent objects in PDF files, but will, instead, limit my discussion to the core of PDF that is in use my most people out there and not the cutting edge stuff that I talk about in my developer blog.

There are three scenarios that are the root cause of most issues around use of PDF files and I’ll address each separately but they can… and do… occur in combination with each other.

This Isn’t Working

OCR Improvenents in Acrobat X

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“What exactly are the OCR improvements in Acrobat X?”

That question came in recently from one of our field people. As a marketing guy, I just take engineering’s word for everything [not really]. If they tell me that the OCR is improved, I say “ok” and move on [again, not really – this is just a rhetorical conceit]. So I asked, they told.

To begin with, there’s a new OCR engine in there and it’s operating at about 1% more accurate than the previous one. Now, I know that one percent doesn’t sound like much but when your already close to 100%, that extra one percent is a big deal. But there are also some process and usability improvements as well.

In Acrobat 9, there was a two step process; import the image and then run the OCR. Because we’d automatically optimize the image for file size, there may have been a small amount of data loss. Optically, this isn’t a big deal but for OCR it can mean the difference between an 8 and a B.

In Acrobat X, we import the image, run the OCR against the lossless version, and then optimize the image for storage in the PDF file. This allows for a smaller file size and we are OCRing the highest quality image. This is true if you connect directly to a scanner or if you drag and drop an image onto Acrobat.

I hope that gives you some insight into the OCR improvements.

MAX 2011 Speaker Profiles: Joel Geraci

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I’m back at MAX this year as a speaker again presenting “Pushing the Envelope with Interactive PDF from InDesign”. I’ll be showing how I put together our interactive success stories using InDesign for the layout and Acrobat Actions to automatically add the interactivity. You can read an in depth article on what I’ll be showing in my article Actions in Action at Adobe and the follow on article Using the “Video Player Plus” with the “Insert VPP JavaScript” Action. I’ll take you through the process step by step and explain my logic behind it all.

My 60 minute session is only scheduled to be delivered once during MAX this year and seating is limited so sign up as soon as possible. In the MAX scheduler, look for this session.

Pushing the Envelope with Interactive PDF from InDesign
Learn how to expand the possibilities for creating interactive PDF files using InDesign and a few special tricks with Acrobat X Actions. Standardize your InDesign templates and let the new guided Actions in Acrobat X do the heavy lifting by automating the addition of JavaScript and button actions to take your interactive documents to new levels.
Joel Geraci
Wednesday, Oct 05, 8:00 AM

MAX 2011 Speaker Profiles: Thom Parker

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Thom Parker of Windjack Solutions is back at
MAX this year and will be presenting “Automating Acrobat: Best Practices for using Actions and Scripting”. Thom has been involved with the Acrobat and PDF Community for quite a few years. In 2004, his company WindJack Solutions released its first Acrobat plug-in, PDF CanOpener, and followed that with two scripting related plug-ins AcroButtons and AcroDialogs in 2005. Thom is a prolific contributor in the user forums at acrobatusers.com, having answered thousands of questions since its inception. He has authored over 60 tutorials on a wide variety of Acrobat and PDF scripting topics for the site. Thom spends much of his time immersed in developing custom scripted solutions for clients spanning a broad spectrum of industries all over the globe, and providing custom on-line training in Acrobat and PDF scripting topics.

Thom and his company WindJack Solutions‘ latest effort is a new subscription web site, www.pdfscripting.com, that provides millions of Acrobat and PDF users on-line access to a comprehensive library of training videos, sample files, copy-n-paste scripts, and automation tools all focused on what can be accomplished with scripting in PDF files.

Thom is considered one of the worlds leading experts on Acrobat Scripting. He is a long time software developer who is deeply involved with the Acrobat and PDF community. He is a regular conference speaker, including speaking at Adobe MAX on various PDF programming topics.

Thom’s 60 minute session is only scheduled to be delivered once during MAX this year and seating is limited so sign up as soon as possible. In the MAX scheduler, look for this session.

Automating Acrobat: Best Practices for using Actions and Scripting
Learn about the two mechanisms in Adobe Acrobat for automating tasks: JavaScript to enable hidden functionality and Actions for grouping multiple tasks into a single step. These two features can greatly improve workflow efficiency, reduce human error, and cut down on training time for employees who need to use these workflows. This session will cover the details of using JavaScript for Acrobat automation and creating guided Actions. We’ll include practical working examples.
Thom Parker
Monday , Oct 03, 3:30 PM

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Chris Converse and Patti Sokol, two MAX veterans will, be taking over for Lori DeFurio this year and presenting “I Didn’t Know Acrobat Could Do That!”

Chris Converse is a graphic designer and multimedia developer specializing in web design and development, interactive media, print, motion graphics, and CD-ROMs. Converse is co-founder of Codify Design Studio (codifydesign.com), which specializes in both graphic design and the technologies that make the design happen across media. Codify standardizes on many Adobe technologies, from developing rich-media PDF files that leverage dynamic Flash applications, to Ajax-based web solutions built on either Adobe Spry or jQuery framework.

Patti D. Sokol brings over 15 years of enthusiasm and experience in teaching Adobe products to her role as an Adobe Solutions Consultant. Her in-depth knowledge and facility for clear and concise explanations enable her to show clients how to solve problems using Adobe tools and products. A dynamic and interactive instructor and presenter, Patti is a Certified Technical Trainer and an Adobe Certified Instructor for Acrobat, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, and Photoshop.

This 90 minute lab is only scheduled to be delivered twice during MAX this year and seating is limited so sign up as soon as possible. In the MAX scheduler, look for this session.

I Didn’t Know Acrobat Could Do That!
Roll up your sleeves and join us for a fun, interactive session about Adobe Acrobat. We’ll take you on a whirlwind tour of functionality guaranteed to open your mind to new ways to work with PDF and SWF or FLV together. You’ll leave with samples and templates and a better understanding of the potential of Acrobat.

Chris Converse & Patti Sokol
Tuesday, Oct 04, 12:30 PM
Monday, Oct 03, 12:45 PM

MAX 2011 Speaker Profiles: Donna Baker

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I’m very happy to be inviting Donna Baker back to MAX this year to present “Acrobat for the Web Designer”.

Donna Baker, of Baker Communications, is a freelance graphic designer, and author of a couple dozen books about design software, and Web design. About half of the books she’s written are on Adobe Acrobat. Donna has also written a monthly article for Acrobatusers.com since the early days of the site. In the last year or so, she’s started to narrow her focus to all things Acrobat. She’s an Adobe Community Expert, an Adobe Certified Expert, and in her spare time she’s one of the online Adobe Acrobat Help system moderators.

You should also check out the Acrofacts blog, where where she posts Acrobat-related topics as they strike her fancy, and downloadable PDF file versions of her acrobatusers.com articles. You can also follow Donna for a daily Acrobat tip on Twitter or Facebook.

Outside of Acrobat and work, she lives in the marshlands of a Canadian lake with her family and two little hound dogs. Donna is also an avid designer of everything, and sculpts in concrete, metal and glass.

Donna’s 60 minute session is only scheduled to be delivered once during MAX this year and seating is limited so sign up as soon as possible. In the MAX scheduler, look for this session.

Acrobat for the Web Designer
Learn how to get PDF files to behave the way you and your readers want on the web. We’ll share best practices for helping to ensure that PDF files are easy to read, navigate, and access, as well as for making PDF files as streamlined as possible without losing quality.
Donna Baker
Tuesday, Oct 04, 8:30AM

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The 64-bit versions of Microsoft Office 2010 are now fully supported with the release of Adobe Acrobat X, Version 10.1. Previously, the Acrobat Ribbon, otherwise known as PDFMaker, only functioned in the 32-bit versions of Office 2010. With this new update, I thought I’d revisit the differences between using Acrobat X to create PDF files from Office documents versus using the native Office “Save As” functionality and then choosing PDF. Admittedly, I’m more than a little biased on this topic, not just because I work for Adobe but because I wrote the original prototype for this functionality way back in 1993 with the release of Acrobat 1.0. Tragically, even that simple macro that I wrote nearly 20 years ago, in some ways, had more functionality that what Microsoft is doing with their "Save As" today.

Acrobat X, Version 10.1 adds Support for Office 2010 64-bit

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Adobe has commissioned Forrester Research to examine the total economic impact (TEI) and potential return on investment (ROI) that enterprises realize by deploying Adobe Acrobat X.

Forrester will conduct one hour phone interviews on Adobe’s behalf with our valued customers, who have started using Acrobat X. The results from these interviews will be aggregated and presented as a composite case study for Acrobat in a final report. Your name and your company’s name will not be published as a part of the report.

Participation criteria:

  • Your company is based in either US, Canada, Germany, UK, France or Japan
  • Your company has more than 1,000 employees
  • Your company has deployed a minimum of 20 seats of Acrobat X since January 2011 or earlier
  • You can speak to the IT ROI and end-user ROI that has been gained from Acrobat X
  • You are willing to be interviewed by Forrester Research over the phone for approximately 1 hour (2 hours if translation is necessary)
  • Other criteria decided by Adobe

There are three primary goals of this interview:

  • To understand your environment prior to deploying Acrobat X and your reasons for switching to Acrobat X
  • To understand your post-deployment experience with Acrobat X
  • To ascertain the overall costs and benefits of upgrading, deploying, operating, and managing Acrobat X

Please contact Akiko Yamamoto, if you would like to participate in this study.

In appreciation for your time, we will send a copy of the finished study in PDF via email and $200 AMEX Gift Card once the interview completes.

I believe you will find the results of this study beneficial.
We look forward to hearing from you.