LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Misconceptions about PDF/A

We were disappointed by misstatements in your July 5 article 'Everything's on the record,' related to the PDF/Archive standard.

First, PDF/A was described as a bare-bones, stripped-down version of PDF. PDF/A is a subset of the PDF specification that defines an archival profile of PDF amenable to long-term preservation. The PDF/A specification outlines features that are required, restricted or prohibited.

Second, the article asserted that the U.S. Courts moved to PDF/A due to an issue with PDF. The U.S. Courts archive in PDF today. The PDF/A standard was ratified at the end of May and has yet to be implemented.

Third, it is true that the National Archives and Records Administration is evaluating formats including PDF/A for future use. But NARA accepts various electronic formats today, including PDF. PDF/A is designed to ensure that electronic files can be retrieved long after the technologies currently used are replaced. The committee that developed PDF/A worked diligently to focus on the appropriate requirements of a long-term file format.

John Mancini, president, AIIM

Melonie Warfel, director of standards, Adobe Systems Inc.

Reader Comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above