PDF – Portable Document Format

The Portable Document Format (PDF) is a platform-independent document file format developed by Adobe Systems and published in 1993.

The goal of PDF was to create a file format for digital documents which would make it possible to faithfully reproduce them regardless of which original application, operating system or hardware platform was used to create them. This relied in large part on the functionality of the PostScript format. A P D F file reader should always be able to display and print a document in the form intended by the original author. Typical conversion problems, such as changing page breaks or incorrect fonts, therefore become a thing of the past when exchanging documents between different programs.

As well as text, images and graphics, a P D F file can also contain help content to make navigation within the document easier. This can include clickable tables of contents, for example, and miniature page previews. P D F has become a widespread format used by many digital publications (e-journals). There are many software products on the market that are capable of producing P D F files.