Archive for May, 2008

May 30, 2008

Don’t Get Caught with Your Digital Pants Down – Add a Watermark in Acrobat

Nobody wants to get caught with their “digital pants” down. Unfortunately there may be times when you accidently send out a document to the “big cheeses” while it is still in draft form. Stamping “Draft” on every page of a document can help save you the embarrassment of sending the wrong file…and possibly your job!
If you choose to use the stamp tool you will have to tediously visit each page of the document. Imagine having a 50 page document that needs a “Draft” stamp on each page…not much fun. However, adding a “Draft” watermark to the document would be far more efficient method of adding the document’s review status.
1. Open the document in Adobe Acrobat
2. click Document > Watermark> Add
3. Type “Draft” in the text area
4. Adjust the opacity of the text using the Opacity slider
5. Add a bit of Rotation using the Rotation radio buttons
6. Click OK
To remove the watermark click Document > Watermark>Remove

10:31 AM Permalink
May 22, 2008

Create an Acrobat Print Button

I have to admit, for a long time I thought that Acrobat was a boring (but useful) application. Acrobat sat on my computer like an obedient dog and, on my command, turned my Word and Excel documents into PDFs. Boring…but useful.
As I started to learn more about Acrobat I realized that it contained a slew of “hidden gems” under the hood. I also learned that you can make a button in Acrobat that can do just about anything.
– Submit a form via email
– Print button
– Open a file
– hyperlink to a web site
– Play, Pause, and stop a movie
– and more…
To get you started here is a simple tutorial for creating a print button:
1. Open or create a PDF document
2. Click Tools > Forms > Show Forms Tool Bar
3. Click the button tool (the “OK” button)
4. Drag out a button onto your document, the Button Properties dialogue will open
5. (General tab)Name the button – this is not the label that will appear on the button
6. Click on the appearance tab and select desired colors
7. Click on the Options tab and add a label – this is the text that will appear on the button
8. Click on the Actions tab. Make sure the “Select Trigger” dropdown displays the “Mouse Up” value
9. Make sure the “Select Action” dropdown displays the “Execute a menu item” value
10. Click the Add button and choose File>Print
11. Click the OK button and click the Close button.
12. DONE! Test the button by clicking on the Hand Tool (it looks like a white glove)
13. When the end user clicks the button the print dialogue should open, just as if they clicked File>Print

8:25 AM Permalink
May 5, 2008

Enable Typewriter Tool for Acrobat Reader

For some reason, educational institutions don’t like to take the time to run Form Field recognition before publishing PDF forms. Adobe Reader users will not be able to digitally fill out the form unless the form has had the fields added in Acrobat. Using the Form Field Recognition tool is ridiculously easy (Forms > Form Field Recognition).
If you don’t take the time to run FFR, at least activate the Typewriter tool for your Acrobat Reader users (Full-blown Acrobat users can activate the Typewriter tool anytime). The Typewriter tool allows text to be typed anywhere on a document.
To activate the Typewriter Tool for Acrobat Reader users:
1. Open Adobe Acrobat 8
2. Click Tools > Typewriter > Enable Typewriter Tool in Adobe Reader
Useless bit of information – The longest word that can be typed using only the top row of alphanumeric keys is “typewriter.” (I know your testing it out…now get back to work!)

2:08 PM Permalink

Extracting Non-Sequential Pages from PDF’s

I often find it necessary to single out various pages from a PDF document and combine them into another. For example, I may need to combine pages 3, 5, and 10 from a fifty page document into a new PDF.
Acrobat provides an “extract pages” option that allows you to extract a range of pages, but this option does not allow for the combination of discontinuous pages. However, you do have a couple of options.
Option 1 – Use the “drag and drop” method as described by the Acrobat for Legal Professionals blog.
Option 2 – Use the “Create PDF from Multiple Files” option using the directions below (my preferred method)
Directions for Option 2
1. Open Adobe Acrobat 8
2. Click on the Create PDF button
3. Select the “From Multiple Files” option
4. The Combine Files dialogue box will open. Click the Add Files button
5. Find the PDF file with the pages you wish to extract and click the Add Files button
6. The PDF will appear in the Combine Files Dialogue, now to select the specific pages.
7. Click the Choose Pages button
8. The Preview and Select Page Range dialogue box will open. This will allow you to type in both a range of pages and non discontinuous pages. For example, if you wished to include pages 1 through 5 and pages 10, 11, and 15 you would simply select the Pages radio button and type 1-5,10,11,15. Cool!
9. Acrobat also provides a Preview tool to help select the correct pages.
10. Click the OK button.
11. The Combine Files dialogue will open and provide an overview of the pages that you selected.
12. From here, decide if you want to combine pages from another document or proceed forward by clicking the Next button.
13. Make sure the Merge files into a single PDF button is selected and click the Create button.
14. Sit back and watch Adobe Acrobat works its magic!

11:26 AM Permalink