Bad accessibility practices and PDF

Tags: DrupalPDFdevelopmentwebsite

Drupal website developer and integrator Pronovix recently posted an interesting insight on using PDF technology. The full post, written by Pronovix CEO Kristof Van Tomme, is well worth reading, but here's the gist of it:

In the web community, PDF has become synonym for a range of accessibility bad practices. Some people even think that we would all be better off if PDF would finally die, just like Flash and Internet Explorer. As a result PDF is not very sexy in the Drupal and wider PHP community and this has negatively impacted our tooling.

This is a shame: when properly implemented, the PDF standard doesn’t need to suffer from the accessibility issues that a lot of online PDF documents are plagued with. PDF also holds a unique position in the digital world, it is a widely accepted standard that enables a range of applications for which there are no real alternatives.

Van Tomme goes on to list interoperability, open data and decentralization as huge benefits to the PDF format - when used correctly. He calls on the Drupal community to be more ambitious with regard to correct PDF implementation and cites iText as a star example of better PDF libraries for the Java community.

The post is the first in a projected multi-part series, and one we definitely recommend our readers to follow!