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Maybe this is beating a dead horse (please, no comments for animal
rights activists), but I think there has to be a way to get formatted
information from PDF out of PDF.
Here's our problem. Our development department decided that they will
produce PDF files as the output from our reporting tool. But, this
presents the documentation team with a problem. How do we show these
reports other than as screen captures (in which we would loose most of
the columns)? In addition, we need to translate the headings (but not
the data) into French, Italian, German, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese,
Japanese, and Chinese. Scanning and OCR are not a viable solution since
we are talking about multiple report examples in 45 English guides
translated into at least six other languages.
I tried a conversion tool that converted PDF into a WMF format (the eval
copy of that software was unable to handle converting it into TIF which
is what we usually filter our graphics into Interleaf). I then pasted
the WMF pages of the report into a Word for Windows document, saved it
as an RTF document, FTP'd the RTF document to my Interleaf desktop and
filtered the document to Interleaf. Voila, the formatted reports were
there, but the text appeared to be rasterized rather than coming in as
text elements, which would make it difficult for our translation teams,
who use IBM Translation Manager on OS/2 to automatically translate the
bulk of our guides. WHEW!
So, does anyone have any suggestions?
We are pursuing another course internally to see if we can intercept the
spool files as the reports are processed before going to PDF, but I hope
there are alternatives that some of you might suggest as well.
Thanks for your attention.
senior technical writer
J.D. Edwards World Source Company
frank_tagader -at- jdedwards -dot- com