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PDF Converter

Updated on December 14, 2009

The basics of PDF file format and its different versions

Definition of PDF: The full form of PDF is Portable Document Format. It is a non-editable format that represents two-dimensional documents. This file format is independent of any other application software for its installation on the system. It is an advanced application that supports multimedia content as well as hyperlinks and bookmarks. The PDF is a portable format that can be accessed on other systems with different configuration.

Origin of PDF: PDF computer application is created by Adobe Systems in 1993. The co-founder of Adobe Systems John Warnock sketched a system called ‘Camelot’. This system gradually evolved into the computer application called PDF. The main aim of creating PDF was to evolve ‘paperless office’. It was basically created to facilitate the document exchange and proper coordination for internal office communication at Adobe. However, over the years this application was commercialized and introduced to the world. The PDF file format underwent tremendous changes to come up with the latest advanced version. The latest version of PDF document has introduced tremendous changes in the applications. This version has modified the features of the PDF documents.

Features of PDF: PDF file format is a combination of three different types of technologies. It is a part of Postscript programming language that generates graphics and layout. It also embeds font or replacement system that embeds fonts and can be viewed on system with different configuration. PDF is made of structured storage system to bundle these elements into a single document. In other words, PDF file format is a combination of vector graphics, raster graphics and text. This enables the file format to support text with all types of fonts. It also contains vector graphics for designs and illustrations. It also includes raster graphics for incorporating photographs and other types of images. PDF document equips the user with an ability to set the security features to protect the content of the document. A user can encrypt the PDF file with a password. One can protect the PDF files with two types of passwords called ‘owner password’ and ‘user password’. A person can protect the files from unauthorized editing, printing, viewing and copying. One can even use digital signatures for the security purpose. PDF Converter also support animation and other multimedia content. User can add audio-visual content in the PDF document. These files also contain compression algorithms. These algorithms compress the size of the files. The smaller sized files are easy to transfer from one system to another.

Versions of PDF: The first version of Portable Document Format was introduced during the year 1993. It is also called version 1.0. The revised version of PDF was introduced in 1996 that brought more features to the file format. This 1.1 version equipped the user with device-independent color, password protection, threads and links. Another version 1.2 was introduced in 1996 bringing interactive page elements, Unicode, advanced color features and much more. In 2000, PDF enabled the user with features such as digital signatures, JavaScript actions. Over the years the PDF file format underwent continuous changes and has come up with the advanced version in 2009.


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