Re: Simultaneous annotation of documents: second try

Subject: Re: Simultaneous annotation of documents: second try
From: Max Wyss <prodok -at- prodok -dot- ch>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 20 Oct 2000 17:29:40 +0200


Actually Acrobat (Business Tools) is a very good tool for collaboration.

You have your Word document. Of that document you create a PDF, which you then make available to the persons having to annotate it (be it by e-mail, be it by sending links or whatever). In order to work kind of decently, they will in any case transfer that PDF locally. There, they make their annotations. Acrobat allows to export these annotations. So, they will not send back an annotated document, but just the exported annotations. Now, the annotations are all imported into the PDF document, and activated. So, you have a single PDF containing all the annotations. You now can create a consolidated report. Only now, you get back to the Word file to process the annotations.

This whole procedure has the advantage that the original Word document does not need to be touched for the annotation process, and it is also possible to do annotations on a read-only document (because you can export the annotations, and you will not need to write back the document).

Hope, this can help.

Max Wyss
PRODOK Engineering
Low Paper workflows, Smart documents, PDF forms
CH-8906 Bonstetten, Switzerland

Fax: +41 1 700 20 37
e-mail: mailto:prodok -at- prodok -dot- ch

[ Building Bridges for Information ]


Earlier this week, I asked whether anyone knew of a way to have two workers
simultaneously edit a Word 97 document. I received no responses, which
suggests that Word doesn't support this feature. (I'm not surprised; that's
not how the software was designed.) So let me rephrase the question:

Is there any _other_ way to let several people annotate a Word document and
then consolidate the comments into a single document? For example, I know
Acrobat's Business Tools has something similar, but does it actually let
everyone work on a single file simultaneously, or do you still have to work
sequentially (or combine the comments from several files)? Has anyone tried
converting the Word file to HTML and annotating _that_ with a solution such
as the "second voice" software? Has anyone come up with something truly
creative that I haven't mentioned?

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