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EBook Creation: The Portable Document File (PDF)

The Portable Document File (PDF) is the base of eBook creation. Text, images and an eBook cover give the eBook its own flair and personality, but the PDF is the tool that helps you to create the finished product.

The Setup
Creative Commons License photo credit: caffeinated_zeitgeist

What is a PDF?

PDF’s are a file format that is used for storing, archiving or exchanging bulky information among computer users. The portable and compatible features of the file format make the task exchanging information more flexible and convenient.

Once the PDF is sealed the advanced features of the format keep the content secure and intact, thus making it perfect for today’s businesses. An added advantage is that you can also insert a variety of images, graphics and multimedia content in the documents.

This capability of the file format enables you to make the documents more interactive in appearance and gives you the ability to create files and even booklets that are appealing and catch the attention of the reader. A large report or book can be reduced to the size of a file making it easy to easily convert files from one format to another.

Homes, schools, colleges and businesses use the PDF document format for storing vast amounts of data and to create online libraries. The PDF file format can also be used for exchanging data across multiple platforms. This is particularly beneficial to businesses that have offices across the country or overseas. In a few minutes a PDF file can be created and sent through an email or link to be used immediately.

The compression algorithms of the PDF reduce the file size. This makes it easier for anyone to view the PDF file on any computer. As long as you have a PDF reader, which is on most computers or can be downloaded from the Internet for free, you can read a PDF file.

EBooks are a popular use for PDF files and the creating of eBooks is growing everyday. With the price of printing and publishing rising the PDF is economical, environmentally friendly and quick replacement for a book. And if you need a quick presentation for a meeting, the PDF file is the perfect solution.

Animation, graphics, audio and video files can easily incorporated into a PDF file giving this form of communication and information exchange a versatility that is quickly becoming irreplaceable in the business world.

How do you create a PDF file?

There are various online tools available with which you can create the PDF documents. They range in price from free to relatively expensive – if you only plan to use the program occasionally.

As with any software program its best to check to see what the software offers and make your decision accordingly.

Once you have worked with a PFD program you will find it is easy to create and manage PDF files. And once the file is created you can encrypt or protect the file using advanced tools and techniques in the PDF software program.

I have only worked with PDF files to create eBooks but have seen the files used at a newspaper office and in many offices. My experience has been with adobe, pdf995 and Open Office. Both pdf995 and Open Office are free. For more information and other options check Google or your favorite search browser.