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Server-side PDF Moving beyond one at a time. Tim Sullivan activePDF, Inc. So why are you here today?. You have nothing better to do at 8:30am You have to go back with something interesting to your boss. You’re kind of interested in server PDF technology

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so why are you here today
So why are you here today?
  • You have nothing better to do at 8:30am
  • You have to go back with something interesting to your boss.
  • You’re kind of interested in server PDF technology
  • You have a real need that you think server PDF technology will fix
what s going to be covered
What’s going to be covered?
  • This is not a product “shoot out”
  • The how’s and why’s of going to server-based PDF
  • Server products for creating & re-using PDF
  • Discovery of new and different ways to do things
  • Some things to watch out for when going to a server-based solution
so why server based pdf
So…why server-based PDF?
  • “I can do that with Acrobat”
  • “That’s cool and all, but out of my price range.”
  • “I don’t own a server”
  • “I have to do what to get it to run?
  • “I hate Windows/Microsoft”
  • “I just don’t get it”
desktopaholics anonymous
Desktopaholics Anonymous
  • Have a real need, know it, but insist on using a desktop application anyways
  • Afraid of “server technology”
  • “Forest for the Trees”
  • activePDF Marketing “Personas”

Too Much Damn Paper Syndrome

george s obstacles
George’s Obstacles
  • Disparate input document sources
  • Statutory requirements for document retention
  • Legislative requirements for document availability
  • Current workflow is entirely paper-based
george s solution
George’s Solution
  • Redesign workflow to be paperless
  • Require known input document sources
  • Retain documents electronically
  • Make documents available online for retrieval purposes
procedural changes
Procedural Changes
  • Require attorneys to file with “standard” formats (e.g. Word, RTF, WordPerfect)
  • New case “cover sheet” for judges decision and signature
pdf technologies used
PDF Technologies Used
  • Conversion Server
    • activePDF DocConverter
    • Adlib eXpress Server
  • Document Markup
    • Adobe Acrobat
  • Stamping & Signing
    • Appligent FDFMerge, StampPDF Pro & SecureSign
    • activePDF Toolkit

Data Storage Disorder

judy s obstacles
Judy’s Obstacles
  • Data is retrieved offsite
  • Manual re-entry is the rule
  • Cannot be 100% paperless
  • Data needs to be shared with lenders
  • No technology in-house to manage information
judy s solution
Judy’s Solution
  • Design PDF version of loan application
  • Store data offsite using 3rd party
  • Repurpose data into appropriate lender forms
  • Take advantage of technologies for date/time non-repudiation
pdf technologies used18
PDF Technologies Used
  • Form Design
    • Adobe Acrobat
    • Amgraf OneForm Designer
  • Form Entry
    • Adobe Reader
  • 3rd Party Data Storage
    • FormRouter.Net
  • Repurposing Data via Form Fill
    • activePDF Toolkit
    • Appligent FDFMerge
    • PDFLib Personalization Server

Document Assembly Hysteria

lisa s obstacles
Lisa’s Obstacles
  • Multiple types of input documents
  • PDF output required for different media
  • “Intelligent” PDF
  • Dependence on her for conversion
  • Order placement specific
  • Distribution (& re-distribution)
lisa s solution
Lisa’s Solution
  • Centralized automated conversion with bookmark, hyperlink, etc. support
  • Automated document assembly
  • Repurpose PDF documents automatically
  • Send via email distribution list
pdf technologies used24
PDF Technologies Used
  • Form Design & Entry
    • Adobe Acrobat
  • Conversion Server
    • activePDF DocConverter
    • Adlib eXpress Server
    • Adobe Elements Server
  • Document Assembly
    • activePDF Toolkit
    • Appligent AppendPDF Pro
  • Automated Repurposing
    • PDF Sages/Apago PDF Enhancer
    • Enfocus PitStop Server

Form God Complex

paul s obstacles
Paul’s Obstacles
  • Too many to mention?
  • Local Save for intermediate storage
  • Obvious solution is Reader Extensions
  • Or is it?
  • No budget
  • OK, he can have $2,000
paul s solution
Paul’s Solution

“Round Tripping”

pdf technologies used30
PDF Technologies Used
  • Form Design
    • Adobe Acrobat
  • Form Entry
    • Adobe Reader
  • Form Fill for Round Tripping
    • activePDF Toolkit
    • Appligent FDFMerge
getting it to work
Getting it to work
  • Create a hidden form field called “Template” and set the value to the name of the PDF
  • Set the click action for the Submit button to do an HTTP POST.
  • For activePDF Toolkit create the following script:
Set TK = Server.CreateObject(“APToolkit.Object”)

R = TK.OpenOutputFile(“MEMORY”)

R = TK.OpenInputFile(Request.Form(“Template”)

For each FieldName in Request.Form

TK.SetFormFieldData FieldName, Request(FieldName), 1





Acrobat Distribution Phobia

peter s obstacles
Peter’s Obstacles
  • Creation from the Desktop mandated
  • Standardized settings
  • “Intelligent” PDF
  • Ease of installation
peter s solution
Peter’s Solution
  • Centralized PDF Creation
  • Acts as a Printer Driver
  • Seamless to the user
pdf technologies used38
PDF Technologies Used
  • Centralized PDF Server
    • Adobe Distiller Server
    • Global Graphics Jaws PDF Server

PDF Creation Hostility Syndrome

ted s solution
Ted’s Solution
  • Talk to Peter
common underlying threads
Common Underlying Threads
  • One “go to” person
  • Cost reduction
  • Standardization
  • Repetitive tasks
  • Data collection and repurposing
what about those 39 programs that run on a server
What about those $39 programs that run on a server
  • You get what you pay for
  • Is the vendor dedicated to PDF or are they looking for a quick buck?
  • Is it really designed to run on a server
5 ways to tell that a program is really just a desktop application running on a server
5 Ways to tell that a program is really just a desktop application running on a server.
  • Requires that someone always be logged in.
  • Runs as a tray icon.
  • Benchmarks are based on 10 documents
  • Price list includes desktop and server (excludes programming API’s )
  • Last week they only had a desktop version…this week viola!
5 ways to tell that it s really a server program
5 Ways to tell that it’s really a server program.
  • It doesn’t care who’s logged in because it installs as a service.
  • Benchmarks include thousands, if not tens of or hundreds of thousands of documents.
  • The company’s webpage actually lists a phone number.
  • Last year they only had a server version…now they are just starting to thinking about desktop.
  • It costs more than lunch (Open Source excluded )
desktop or server how do you choose
Desktop or ServerHow do you choose?
  • Decide if it’s what you really need or want. With power comes headaches.
  • If you don’t have the people resources to implement a server solution, hire them, learn it yourself or stick with the desktop.
  • You can always use our method…