Now Available on BiGTech: Adobe Acrobat XI Pro

By: BigTech
Mon, 05/11/2012 - 12:48

tags:  Adobe

We've just added Adobe Acrobat XI Pro, the newest version of Adobe's PDF-creation software, to our donation catalog. Eligible organizations can request it for Windows or Mac as a downloadable donation.

Most people are familiar with PDF documents, and if you don't use Acrobat, you've probably at least used the free Adobe Reader to view a PDF that someone else created. Acrobat's most notable feature is that it allows you to create PDF documents from a variety of source files, but there are a lot of other uses too.

• Create PDFs from other applications: With the Acrobat XI Pro, you can create PDF files from any application that can print, or natively from Microsoft Office. This facilitates information-sharing on any platforms that might be used by your stakeholders, as PDFs are one of the most widely used file formats.
• Convert to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint: Conversely, you may get PDFs from partners and allies where there's information that can be used, like for a grant report for example. Acrobat XI Pro lets you bring that content over easily by converting a PDF to a Word document, Excel spreadsheet, or PowerPoint presentation.
• Combine files in a PDF: You can merge multiple types of files -- like documents, spreadsheets, emails, and images -- into one PDF to more easily send related files. For professional projects, like an electronic annual report, you can combine several types of files (video included) as a PDF Portfolio. These might include pictures from an event, spreadsheets and charts for your financials, and multimedia for some client testimonials.
• Edit text or images directly in a PDF: The editing tools in Acrobat XI have been improved so that you can add or remove whole paragraphs or replace images directly in Acrobat without remaking the entire PDF. Edward Mendelson of PCMag.com says in his review of the software: "If you click a plus-sign icon next to the Format item on the editing menu, you get access to detailed typographic controls over kerning and spacing, just as in Adobe's high-end graphics and layout software. You get similar power over images. Right-click on an image and the menu offers options to flip or rotate the image, plus an option to replace the image entirely."
• Secure documents: If you don't want someone to be able to copy and paste from a PDF, you can specify this when creating a document in Acrobat XI Pro (or make copy and editing content password-restricted). For a higher level of security, you may choose to encrypt the file with its built-in security features. You can also sign documents with digital signatures to acknowledge readership and approvals.
• Scan to PDF and OCR: If you have mounds of paperwork that needs to be archived, the Acrobat XI Pro would allow you to scan to PDF and at the same time use optical character recognition (OCR) so that the text in those files is searchable. For many of us whose organizations started before today's technologies, this can be a helpful bridge to digitally store work you've done in the past and be able to easily search through it in the future.
• Create PDF and web forms: You can create clean and professional forms for events, employment records, and client intake; draft surveys for your program work; or easily digitize things like performance evaluations. While web forms and surveys are also popular, there may be programmatic or privacy reasons why hard-file forms are more suitable. Adobe Acrobat can convert Word or Excel documents into fillable forms, and the Form Tracker functionality allows you to conveniently collect data and export for further analysis. If desired, web-based forms can also be created within Acrobat through Adobe's subscription-based FormsCentral service, allowing you to link to the forms online like a standard online survey.