PDF stands for “Portable Document Format,” an image of book pages that can be viewed online and printed using any printer. PDFs are commonly used as digital copies of books, magazines, or other publications to distribute digital copies online.
PDFs preserve all the formatting of an original document, such as fonts, graphics, and color; they’re platform independent – that means they look the same on all computers – while being compact enough to store, distribute, view over the Internet, and password protect.
PDFs are particularly beneficial when printing or including graphics in documents. PDFs make fillable forms easier to complete electronically, and long documents can be read online conveniently.
To create a PDF, begin with any document – for instance, a Word document, Excel spreadsheet, or PowerPoint presentation- and then use Acrobat or another PDF reader program to convert it. You could even scan an existing document and convert it to PDF format.
PDFs have become an essential means of book distribution due to various reasons:
- They’re highly versatile; readers can access PDFs on different devices ranging from computers to e-readers and smartphones.
- PDFs are relatively straightforward for authors and publishers to create; they can easily create new PDFs from scratch or convert existing documents into them.
- PDFs offer more security than other formats because password protection can be implemented quickly.
- Compression makes PDFs smaller for easier distribution.
PDFs offer numerous advantages that make them attractive to both authors and publishers. Their versatility, ease of creation, and security make them ideal for author-publisher collaboration, while their compression makes them easier to distribute. As more people adopt e-readers capable of reading PDFs, their popularity will likely continue to rise.