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This week in PDF: Office-to-PDF widget released

November 21, 2006

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This week in PDF, Microsoft launches its PDF export widget, Adobe introduces a new document security solution and the PDF/A Competence Center welcomes its first official member in the US.

First up, Microsoft has released a freely downloadable add-on to Microsoft Office products that allows the export of documents as PDF or XPS files. That this functionality was originally slated for inclusion in the core Microsoft offerings resulted in a storm of controversy when Adobe allegedly cried foul. The outcome of this cause célèbre was that Microsoft would still offer the export functionality, albeit now via a separate add-in. For more information or to download a copy of the Add-in, check out the download page.

Speaking of Adobe, it this week introduced Adobe Document Center, a new hosted service designed to assist knowledge workers protect, share and track the usage of Adobe PDF and other documents. This new, Web-based service allows users to grant and dynamically revoke access to documents distributed inside or outside a firewall, as well as audit actions such as opening, adding comments and printing. More about the service can be found at the Adobe Document Center Web site.

Finally, the Berlin-based PDF/A -- the "A" stands for "Archival" -- Competence Center welcomed its first US-based member. Headquartered in San Diego, PageTech provides PCL transformation tools for developers, and earlier this year was the first PCL to PDF product vendor to convert PCL raster image and character objects into the most compact PDFs using Adobe's JBIG2 compression method. The PDF/A Competence Center aims to promote the exchange of information and experience in the area of long-term archiving in accordance with the new International Standards Organization's ISO 19005: PDF/A file format. Details are available at the PageTech and PDF/A Competence Center Web sites.

That's it for this week! Until next time...

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