First comments on the gold release

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vivadavid
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First comments on the gold release

Post by vivadavid » Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:52 am

Hello,

First of all, congratulations on the good work! I’ve been following PDF-Xchange and this forum for quite a while now and unfortunately I haven’t been able to use this software that often because it didn’t support PDF/A. Now that it does, I hope it becomes my primary PDF viewer. I haven’t analyzed the new release thoroughly, but I’d like to make some comments on it:

1. One of the features that first attracted me to PDF-Xchange was the styles for comment and mark-up tools. I constantly need to mark my PDF files with at least two or three different colours and doing this on, for example, Adobe takes a lot of time, as you need to double-click, select colour and accept. These few seconds taken, over and over again, are very much time-consuming to me. All this long explanation to say how fantastic the styles are and how unique this feature is. However, I can’t find them on PDF-Xchange Editor: will they be back soon?

2. I’ve used the Highlight Text Tool and it stays over the text in such a way that it hides it, now matter the transparency level you use (unless I’ve done something wrong): please check my caption.

3. I can’t find the Update feature on the Help menu. How does update work now?

Some other time, I’d like to test the bookmarks and other features.

Thanks for reading such a long message and congratulations again,

David

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by Tracker Supp-Stefan » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:11 pm

Hello David,

And many thanks for your kind words. Please bear in mind that modifying PDF/A compliant files might break the /A compliance.

Other than that - styles would be available in the Editor in a future build. In fact any feature you know and have seen in the Viewer will be available in the Editor as well.

For the highlight tool - make sure that the blending mode is set to Multiply and not to e.g. "normal" - the blend mode are the two squares coloured differently at the end of the Properties toolbar.

Best,
Stefan

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by vivadavid » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:26 pm

Hi, Johh,

1. Looking forward for the styles :-)

2. I've tried both Normal and Multiply and it doesn't work (also the transparency level doesn't change if you modify the percentage).

3. Does it mean that, if I add highlighting, notes or lines to the PDF/A files, the structure changes and they are not compliant any more? I would have thought all these annotations were in a different layer. Can I ask you what the consequences are for the file?

Thank you for your time,

David

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by vivadavid » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:41 pm

Edit:

I've just tried with a non PDF/A file and the highlighting works fine, so the problem concerns specifically the markup-tools and the PDF-A format. I didn't notice this problem with the Viewer.

Also, you didn't say anything about the automatic updates feature.

Thanks again!

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by Tracker Supp-Stefan » Mon Apr 29, 2013 3:44 pm

Hi David,

Yes - now that you've brought it to my attention that this only happens with Archiving files, I believe the PDF-A specification does not allow transparency and color overlays - so you will have to use the underline tool for such files as the highlight tool just won't work there (or the file will no longer be PDF-A compliant.

As for the automatic updates - it's going to be added in a future build - we are overhauling the update tool as well.

Best,
Stefan

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by vivadavid » Mon Apr 29, 2013 4:19 pm

Thanks for your answer, John!

1. When you say "Archiving File"... is that a synonym for "PDF/A file".

2. I've tried the Underline tool and it works well, as it's obviously below the text and it can't hide it. However, are you sure highlighting is not supported by the PDF/A standard? I've used it in several PDF viewers and I never had any problems... unless all these different pieces of software made changes on my files (I didn't noticed them) which made them non-PDF/A compliant. Therefore, I'd like to ask you again if the highlight tool could be implemented in a future release, even if all those layer options (multiply, screen, etc.) need to be disabled.

3. You mentioned before that certain operations that can make a PDF/A non-compliant with the standard. Is it safe for me to add notes, lines, etc.? Is there something I should be careful about or the "potentionally dangerous" features are automatically disabled?

Sorry for bothering you so much with all these concerns but I'm just trying to contribute a little to make PDF-Xchange Editor an even better programme.

I appreciate your help.

Regards,

David

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by Paul - Tracker Supp » Tue Apr 30, 2013 4:59 am

Hi David,
1. When you say "Archiving File"... is that a synonym for "PDF/A file".
Yes I believe this is what was meant. The A in PDF/A stands for Archiving as it's a set of standards to be complied with to ensure the document has a long life of compatibility - archives in other words.
2. I've tried the Underline tool and it works well, as it's obviously below the text and it can't hide it. However, are you sure highlighting is not supported by the PDF/A standard? I've used it in several PDF viewers and I never had any problems... unless all these different pieces of software made changes on my files (I didn't noticed them) which made them non-PDF/A compliant. Therefore, I'd like to ask you again if the highlight tool could be implemented in a future release, even if all those layer options (multiply, screen, etc.) need to be disabled.
Highlighting will be implemented in a near build. Regards the standards, Stefan is pretty good with that stuff so I'd expect it is right. I can get confirmation of this.
3. You mentioned before that certain operations that can make a PDF/A non-compliant with the standard. Is it safe for me to add notes, lines, etc.? Is there something I should be careful about or the "potentionally dangerous" features are automatically disabled?
The Viewer will warn you when you make changes to PDF/A document that it "may" break PDF/A compliance, it does not however warn specifically is a certain action will result in that or not. It's an interesting idea and I've added it to the "Wish List" - if it's practical it may yet happen. No promises though.

hth
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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by vivadavid » Tue Apr 30, 2013 3:18 pm

Hello,

First of all, I’m sorry I said "John" when it was Stefan who was answering my first messages. Secondly, thank you, Stefan and Paul, for your answers.

1. After reading a few times the last post, there’s something I don’t quite get. You said, Paul, that you can confirm that highlighting isn’t compliant with the PDF/A standard, but that it "will be implemented in a near build". Therefore, I understand that highlighting will be implented for PDF/A Files, even if it’s not part of PDF/A standard: is this what you mean? If that’s the case, we would be in the same scenario as with PDF Viewer, where highliting was allowed despite the constraints of the standard. The user could be warned, but he could still decide if he wants to highlight the text. What is not practical is the current situation, where you can use the highlight but it completely hides the text without a warning to the user.

2. This brings me to a question I asked before: what are the consequences of adding, for example, a note, a line or a highlight to a PDF/A file? I suppose I wouln’t care so much about the compliance if I’d still be able to open my PDF/A file with most viewers and do the basic operations: rotate and delete pages, add other markup and annotation signs, add bookmarks, etc. Is the compliance important only for really advanced users and only under very particular circumstances?

3. If this is the case, it’s a shame that I never used PDF Viewer with my PDF/A Files, as I was concerned about my files being corrupted or something.

I hope I explained myself well.

Regards,

David

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by Tracker Supp-Stefan » Tue Apr 30, 2013 4:34 pm

Hello David,

No problem about mixing the names :)

I just checked with the lead developer and he confirmed that in PDF/A-1 (both a and b) transparency and blending modes other than normal are not allowed. So the Editor is correctly preventing you from using transparency, and the highlight tool won't actually help much with the blending mode forced to normal (solid colour).

As for compliance - it will usually matter if you need to submit those files to a tool that will check and try to validate the files - e.g. some government institutions are now requesting submission of documents that are compliant with the PDF/A specification.
However I do not believe that our Editor can be told to allow editing that will break the PDF/A compliance.

Best,
Stefan

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by vivadavid » Tue Apr 30, 2013 4:57 pm

Well, as far as I know, most PDF viewers allow highlight on PDF/A files even if this breaks the standard, starting with PDF Viewer, and it would be a shame if PDF Editor doesn't behave this way. It's just a matter of warning the user, and I'm sure most people, even advanced users, won't care about the standard if they can still view, copy and paste, print, do some editing, etc. The way you put it, the PDF/A standard would concern only big companies and international institutions (if they do care about it).

I really hope you consider this request of implement. Otherwise, I'm afraid I'll have to stick to PDF Viewer and won't be able to take advantage of the improvements you've made. Please think about it.

Thanks,

David

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by Will - Tracker Supp » Tue Apr 30, 2013 5:03 pm

Hi David,

It certainly will be considered, but we can't guarantee anything and, as Stefan said, if this goes against specification, then we can't do it as we conform, 100% to the PDF Specification and would not want to break compliance with the ISO Standard.
If posting files to this forum, you must archive the files to a ZIP, RAR or 7z file or they will not be uploaded.
Thank you.

Best regards

Will Travaglini
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Tracker Software Products Ltd.
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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by vivadavid » Tue Apr 30, 2013 5:32 pm

I understand you want to conform 100% to the PDF/A specification, and you can still do that and, at the same time, by warning the user before completing the action, let him use the markup and annotation tools if he doesn't need compliance for his files, as I am sure is the case for most people who create PDF/A files from his documents. I believe this would be an excellent compromise that would make both you and us very happy.

In any case, I'll keep my fingers crossed. Have a nice evening!

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Re: First comments on the gold release

Post by Will - Tracker Supp » Tue Apr 30, 2013 5:36 pm

Hi David,

I'll certainly make sure that compromise gets pitched to the Developers! :)

Have a great day too!
If posting files to this forum, you must archive the files to a ZIP, RAR or 7z file or they will not be uploaded.
Thank you.

Best regards

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