In just a few weeks, PDF Days are coming to the US with dedicated multi-track, all-day events in both Washington (December 10) and New York City (December 11).
The PDF Day events are educational in nature -- as the organizers clearly state, these aren't trade-shows, and speakers are tech experts who seek to foster best practice rather than sell products. The firmly non-commercial nature of the PDF Days is a natural fit for the PDF Association, the body responsible for running the events.
The PDF Association first started back in 2006 as the PDF/A Competence Center, and since its inception has worked to promote the adoption and implementation of international PDF-based standards. Since its recognition as a formal standard in 2008, this includes PDF itself.
The PDF Association's goals go far beyond simply encouraging developers, decision-makers and end-users to choose PDF-based solutions, though. The functionality and uses of PDF have grown substantially since the heyday of Netscape Navigator, but perceptions of PDF haven't changed nearly so much. Sure, PDF is still the best format around for faithfully displaying paginated content, but using it can also serve to reduce risks, increase compliance, support digital signature-based approval workflows, and can play nicely with many writing systems and various platforms -- including those used for mobile and cloud-based systems.
Of the newer PDF features, one that has been in focus lately is the ability of PDF-A-3 -- the latest PDF-based standard for long-term archiving -- to embed other files in PDFs. This feature is unique among the PDF/A family of standards, and, as the PDF Association puts it, "PDF/A-3 makes it possible to use the PDF as a delivery vehicle for one or more other files, of any type. Effectively, the PDF becomes a zip archive that may also include an integrated cover-document."
Those interested to learn more have the opportunity to do so at the two upcoming PDF Day events, which are targeted at CIOs, IT executives, content strategists and document management vendors.
More specific information about the two individual events is included below, taken from the PDF/A website:
PDF Day in Washington DC will have 18 short, intensive sessions in 2 tracks, all dedicated to addressing the government IT perspective on PDF technology, especially archiving (PDF/A), authentication (digital signatures) and accessibility (Section 508). A panel discussion on trends in government adoption of document technology, and -- while all educational sessions will be vendor and product neutral, the fast-paced commercial session: "4 minutes with a PDF developer" ends the day by highlighting what’s available on the market.
PDF Day in New York will have 15 sessions in 2 tracks, all dedicated to delivering information and answering questions about how PDF technology enables electronic business, with special focus on the financial services and legal sectors. The day ends with a panel discussion on where electronic document technology should be going.
Planet PDF talks with another Master of the PDF Universe, Eugene Y. Xiong, Founder and Chairman of the Board at Foxit Software Inc. in Fremont California. Xiong is a quiet yet astounding achiever, you (usually) won't find him talking at conferences, exhibits, or publishings, but what you will find is the result of his leadership in places you would never expect.
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