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Final winners of 'How to Do Everything with Acrobat 6' book

October 19, 2004

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We've named all eight randomly selected winners in our promotional contest to give away eight free copies of "How to Do Everything with Adobe Acrobat 6" by Doug Sahlin and published by Osborne/McGraw-Hill. This contest is now closed!

For a preview of the book, see:

QUALIFYING QUESTION: (Choice)

How to Do Everything with Acrobat 6 Q1: Briefly describe an example document or project -- based on your (personal or company) use of Acrobat and/or PDF -- where you made considerable or innovative use of the format/product's capabilities, and explain why/how ... OR ...

Q2: Review the detailed Table of Contents [PDF: 72kb] for this book and explain which you believe would be most useful, and briefly explain why.

Final List of Winners

Jon Ashley
User Experience Architect
Refinery
King of Prussia, PA

A: "To design and communicate plans for building Web sites and Web-based applications, we develop 'wireframes' and 'site maps' in Visio. By utilizing the new support in Acrobat 6 Pro for 'layers,' I am able to separate out 'document framework' from 'page content' so that I can hide page elements meant for print when I am showing the PDF as a full-screen presentation.

The various page titles from Visio are automatically rendered as 'bookmarks' for navigating the PDF.

But some time following 'scenarios' within the documentation is a non-linear thing. So, by merging "site map" diagram pages of one size with page layout 'wireframes' of another into a single PDF (something you can't do within our version of Visio), I can add navigational links for the 'box' in the sitemap representing a page to the wireframe of that page.

In alternating back and forth between the 'sitemap' and the 'wireframes,' it is easier to communicate the intended flow of users through the site being planned.

I can use a single document for print, presentation and team electronic distribution and review. Beautiful."


Pat Zimmerman
Marketing Communications Manager
First Financial Corporation
Terre Haute, IN

A: "Chapter 12 ('Optimize PDF Documents') looks as if it would be the most helpful. We send newspaper ads as PDF files to mostly small papers throughout our regional service area and I've seen a variety of problems. In some cases, the ads, when published, look as if they've been screened -- even the type will have a dot pattern in it. A few of the papers can't output a PDF unless it is created with an older version of Acrobat (version 3.0 is what we typically use for that). Getting four-color ads to separate properly has been a problem for others. I don't know how to address these problems as I've never found a reference book that covered them."

Molly Vogt
GIS Specialist
City of Gresham Department of Environmental Services
Gresham, OR

A: "PDF Application: Our city provides street sweeping services throughout the year. Many residents ask us for a calendar of sweeping dates so that they may move their leaves, vehicles, or other property accordingly. To address this issue, we built a map with embedded JavaScript [PDF: 120 MB] that enables citizens to click on a neighborhood and retrieve the street sweeping schedule for that area.

This interactive and printable map enables citizens to quickly retrieve information that pertains directly to them. It saves paper because we no longer print and mail sweeping schedules to every resident; it also saves staff time because our residents can use the web rather than the phone to get information they seek. By taking advantage of visible but non-printable fields, we also offer instructions on how to use the digital form of the map, but this text does not clutter the printed version to which it does not apply."


Sarah Brunt
Graphics Designer
Standard Register
Toccoa, GA

A: "Our company is encouraging many of our customers to add comments, using annotation tools, to the proof pdfs that we send them. I have been responsible for putting together a training program for Acrobat 5 and now 6, that we take onsite to the customer. I show them how to annotate changes to the proof pdfs that we send to them. We go through changing the comment properties and how to use each tool.

Although the whole book looks very interesting, I am particularly interested in Chapter 8 - 'Interactive PDF Navigation.' We do numerous large manuals for several different companies. I believe that this information will not only help us to learn a better way to navigate quickly and easily through several hundred pages, but it will also be quicker for our customers to be able to review the specific sections that they want to make changes to."


Eric Horlin
Manager Survey Inspection
Department of Land Information
Midland, Western Australia

A: "The Department of Land Information (DLI) has implemented a system which allows surveyors to lodge survey plans as PDF files. The plan PDF files (known as e-Plans) are vector-based PDFs created directly from the CAD system that draws the plan. The e-Plans can contain multiple sheets.

Adobe Acrobat has numerous features that allows for more efficient processes when accepting plans in PDF (rather than hardcopy). These features include:

  • Vector Graphics that are scalable and, subject to certain limitations, editable
  • Cataloguing allowing for the inclusion of metadata and searching of files
  • Multiple Digital Signatures which allows the e-Plans to be "signed off" by the relevant parties
  • Comparing versions of files and rolling backwards to identify any changes made to e-Plans between the different digital signatures applied
  • Collaboration Tools that assist with the audit and review of e-Plans
  • Numerous Imaging Tools; Form Tools that allow for various fields to be placed over e-Plans to record the processing steps and plan status
  • Acrobat 6 supports layers which we intend to take advantage of at some stage"

Norm C. Barry
Instructor and Support Technician
Goldwood Consultants Ltd.
Penticton, British Columbia, Canada

A: "I am an instructor in applications. Recently I was asked to provide support to a group of legal secretaries in Acrobat 6. What I found upon initial consult with the legal group was that the land titles offices of the provincial governments were now requiring all law offices to interface using Acrobat version 6. They had no training whatsoever and were actually using a much older version of Acrobat.

The first thing we did was upgrade their software to Version 6.0 Professional. During the summer off-season I took the "Adobe Classroom in a Book" course to bring my skills up to speed to be able to deliver formal training courses in the fall. I have now completed the training and am about to attempt my A.C. Expert exam.

It will be a major advantage for this law firm and others to have their staff up-to-speed in Acrobat Pro 6.0 so they can efficiently and professionally handle the Provincial Land Title Offices electronic filing. The protection of PDF files section and skills are of utmost priority in handling these LTO e-filing conveyances and our work with just this topic alone has allowed the law firm to e-file transactions the same day versus what used to take days to transact. The lawyers are ecstatic and the clients are as well. This is an amazing product for use in the legal profession."


Jarett LeBlang
Sales Assistant
Professional Group Plans
Hauppauge, NY

A: "I truly am a novice when it comes to Acrobat and up to recently used it to create PDF documents for emailing. At the office we use certain forms which I also have created with Acrobat 5, Recently upgraded to 6, in order to have the office go completely paperless. The project I began was to take our paper data entry form and convert it to an Acrobat PDF form, which I did. It required manual entry of calculations and has a bunch of pulldowns. I have endeavored since then to automate the process and have started learning Acrobat Javascript. I since then have gotten the formula to do the calculations and am working on using ODBC connectivity to pull the data out of a database."


Cory Gilbert
Supervisor, Worldwide Official Regulatory Files/Freedom of Information
Merck Research Labs, Merck & Co., Inc.
Blue Bell, PA

A: "Adobe Acrobat has enabled us to streamline our workflows immeasurably. Working in the regulatory arm of a large pharmaceutical company, efficiencies are cherished. Previously, we were handcuffed to the large-volume printing and distribution to project teams of all paper-based submissions. Acrobat has allowed us to replace this archaic process by providing rich, functional PDF instances which allow the end user easy navigation, quicker delivery and immediate access from virtually anywhere. Costs are down, customer satisfaction is through the roof. Can you ask for more than that?"

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