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Acrobat 9 Pro

Adobe’s newest version of Acrobat extends collaboration and integrates Flash technology.

By Kim Crowley

Based in San Jose, CA, Adobe Systems Incorporated first broke ground with PostScript, a development that revolutionized and standardized print production. Today, Adobe software enables collaboration and creation from the home PC user to the SMB, to the professional designer, and the enterprise.

Adobe Acrobat creates portable document format (PDF) files, which capture and embed fonts, images, comments, and critical printing preferences. Available now, the new Adobe Acrobat 9 is a worthy upgrade, which extends collaboration opportunities and blends other Adobe technologies.

Hands On
The Acrobat 9 family consists of Acrobat 9 Standard, Acrobat 9 Pro, and Acrobat 9 Pro Extended. We run through a quick upgrade with the new version 9 Pro of Adobe Acrobat. As Adobe states, version 9 does seem to launch in about half the time of Acrobat 8.

The new version of Acrobat integrates the Flash technology that Adobe acquired with its purchase of Macromedia in 2005. Version 9 enables Dynamic Adobe Flash Player-compatible video and application files to be included in PDF documents. We take whole multimedia Web pages and convert them to PDF documents for sharing, printing, and presentations.

We unify a wide range of content into a single, compressed PDF document using Acrobat 9’s new component, PDF Portfolios. Multiple items, including images, video, text, and charts are brought together to create a PDF file. The PDF is customizable with a selection of professional layouts included with the software in addition to our specific branding.

The new Form Wizard lets us create forms from paper or electronic documents. We add, edit, and name our form fields. The Form Tracker indicates when forms are completed and by whom.

Acrobat 9 Pro Extended allows us to search, measure, and mark up GPS-enabled PDF maps. We find longitude and latitude by placing our cursor over a target location, and we take measurements.

For print accuracy, the new object inspector allows us to click on photos and other items in a PDF to get information on resolution, transparency, color space, and other print-critical data. Other enhanced preflight options we use include search by resolution and search by ink coverage checks.

We access a suite of hosted services available as public beta at Acrobat.com. Here, we are able to upload up to 5GB of data per person. We store and access the files for free, and we collaborate with other team members live, right within a PDF document. Several team members can view, walk through, and comment on a PDF at the same time.

Acrobat 9 Pro Extended includes Adobe Presenter software for converting Microsoft PowerPoint presentations into multimedia experiences that can be published as PDF files. With Adobe Presenter, we add video, speech, and more to PowerPoint slides, and then output to PDF.

Adobe Reader 9 is expected to be available by early July 2008. Adobe says the free Reader 9 software is expected to launch up to twice as fast as earlier versions.

Specifications
Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro Extended requires a 1.3GHz or faster processor; Internet Explorer 6.0; 512MB of RAM; 2.35GB of available hard-disk space; 1,024x768 screen resolution; and a DVD-ROM drive. Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro Extended also requires Microsoft Windows XP Home, Professional, or Tablet PC Edition with Service Pack 2 or 3 (32-bit and 64-bit); Windows Server 2003 (with Service Pack 2 for 64-bit); or Windows Vista Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Ultimate, or Enterprise with or without Service Pack 1 (32-bit and 64-bit). Video hardware acceleration is optional.

Acrobat 9 Pro is available for Windows or Macintosh operating systems. Acrobat 9 Pro requires 256MB of RAM (512MB recommended); 1,024x768 screen resolution; and a DVD-ROM drive. Acrobat 9 Pro for Macintosh requires a PowerPC G4 or G5 or Intel processor; Mac OS X v10.4.11 or 10.5; and 1.42GB of available hard-disk space. Acrobat 9 Pro for Windows requires a 1.3GHz or faster processor; 2.13GB of available hard-disk space; Internet Explorer 6.0. Acrobat 9 Pro for Windows requires Microsoft Windows XP Home, Professional, or Tablet PC Edition with Service Pack 2 or 3 (32-bit and 64-bit); Windows Server 2003 (with Service Pack 2 for 64-bit); or Windows Vista Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Ultimate, or Enterprise with or without Service Pack 1 (32-bit and 64-bit). Video hardware acceleration is optional.

Summary
With more employees working off-site and with fuel and business travel costs climbing, there is a growing need for efficient and professional collaboration tools. Adobe Acrobat 9 fits a need for organizations that need to communicate from cubicle to cubicle, headquarters to traveling sales team, designer to print provider, and home office to the global marketplace.

Jul2008, Digital Output

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