I need help with a PDF

By lludacrisboy ยท 12 replies
Oct 16, 2008
  1. ok so i need help..

    I have some documents that I need to scan into the computer. But I need to be able to save them as PDF files so that I can fill them in on the computer and then print them out with all the data typed in rather then hand writing the data in. Thus eliminating the need to hand write in the information into a form that needs to be filled out for multiple people.
    I hope you guys can point me in the direction of the best program free or one that costs money.

  2. skitzo_zac

    skitzo_zac TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 418

    I'm don't really understand what you are wanting to do here, but Open Office can save(export) documents as .pdf files. Open Office is free as it is open source and they recently released version 3.0.

    You can download Open Office 3.0 from TechSpot here
  3. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    He wants to scan in a document, then be able to add in his own text. As far as I know, that can't be done outside of using the real version of Adobe Acrobat. And even at that its not that great.
  4. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    I think the question is: What are the real requirements here?

    Roger, do you really care about having a .pdf file? Or do you just want
    • Scan/digitize a document into multiple graphics images (e.g. one per page on image of each scan page - no OCR conversion to text needed)
    • Be able to organize the collection of graphic images an an office document
    • Be able to create / overlay text boxes over the images so you can enter whatever data you want.
    • And I'm guessing you';d want the option of either 0% -100% transparent boxes with a choice of colors as fill color
    • Print multiple copies of this new document
    In which case i would think either Word or Open Office would be fine?
  5. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    You will need to purchase adobe acrobat professional. It will do this and it also scans. Be prepared to shell out some buck$ You can use an OCR like the other guys said, but that is a roundabout method and not always accurate.
  6. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    Without having better requirements or knowing more, i don't understand why MS Word (probably Open Office, i've just never usedit) and a basic scanner won't work.

    Basic Word functionality supports
    1. Scanning pages into a document.. Each scanned page is automatically added as a graphic image (not text) to a Word document.
    2. Completing parts of the form for others. If OP wants to fill out some parts, Word allows you to create a text box and type in whatever you want in fonts and font size of your choice. The text box can be 100% transparent or 0 - 100% opaque white (or other color) as meets the need

    It's not clear at this point if addtional functionality is needed.
  7. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    openoffice can create PDF documents, however to create them from a scanner, you will need adobe professional.
  8. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    This is becoming academic as OP still hasn't clarified their requirements, but for the record:
    • Both Word and OpenOffice can create a document from a scanner (ie. scanning individual source pages).
      • Pages are scanned and stored as images
      • In OpenOffice, Insert->Picture then select and scan from a TWAIN device
      • OP hasn't clarified a need for any OCR requirements. If they just want to fill in parts (or all of a form) there's no need (from what i heard so far) for OCR.
    • In my own opinion, it's not clear OP even needs .pdf or they simply mixed in a product name when stating functionality (as can often occur)
    • And OpenOffice is free. From a quick look online, Adobe Professional is selling for $200-$250. A $200+ difference in cost might also influence requirements.
  9. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    that may be true, but to my knowledge, OO cannot edit scanned PDF documents as it is in a picture format. To do that, you need adobe professional.

    I was not aware OO can scan documents, but that is a nice feature. I use OO all the time. I also have adobe professional.
  10. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    You aren't "editing" the picture. Rather, like any drawing package, it is simply creating an object to overlay over the picture. In this case a text box which can be fully transparent. Or you may chose a "fill" color as well the % transparency.

    Is easy to fill in scanned forms that way

    /* Edit */
    As a matter of fact, one could probably even use MS Paint to simply add the text/fill boxes one picture at a time. In this case, we only really use OO or Word in this case to manage the multiple pictures as multiple pages in a document
  11. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    well if all you want to do is print a scanned document then OO or word will do it as a PDF. But of course, as we said, editing it as a PDF is out of the question unless you have adobe pro.
  12. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    Agreed. Am guessing this is a case when someone said they need a Xerox machine when they really just need a copier.
  13. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    well there is a difference in the way the document will look if you use a word processor instead of Adobe when scanning to make copies. A word processor will upload the scanned document as a picture or image (with edges). Adobe will reproduce the document exactly. Some word processors are getting better at this though.

    I was lucky to get a free government copy of Adobe 6.0 PRO years ago when my office was throwing it out. It still does what I need it to do.
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