We’ve been going through some testing of different online forms here at IWU. We can now use Adobe Acrobat 8.0 Professional to make fillable PDF forms that users can save on their local computers. The neat part is that the users don’t need the full version to save and pass along these fillable forms – they just need Adobe Reader.
Now, for other uses, there are already free alternatives. If we need to create a static, flat PDF, PDF Creator has been quite effective. It works like a virtual printer so any printable document could be converted to PDF free of charge. No need for touchy MS Office plugins either. Of course if a Mac user wants a PDF it is already integrated into the Print dialog in OS X.
I’ve also been looking into the quality of output from these various sources. There have been a few font embedding issues from Quark on Macs that don’t happen with Acrobat. hmmm….