AEM Guides Native PDF Publishing: A game-changing solution
- Posted on March 17, 2023
- Estimated reading time 3 minutes
AEM Guides, previously known as XML Documentation for AEM, is a feature-rich tool to handle the DITA-based content and delivery of the content in multiple formats such as AEM Pages, HTML5, EPUB, JSON, and PDF.
The release of feature-packed Native PDF Publishing brought great strength in generating PDFs natively and publishing them to production environments within a short span. In other words, it is a simple, highly productive, and powerful feature in AEM.
In this blog, we will understand briefly about native PDF publishing, tech-stack, features available, PDF output options, benefits, and release cadence.
Native PDF Publishing
Adobe rolled out the feature in 2022, and it is gaining popularity due to its simplicity and capability of generating PDFs with styling.
- Templates: folder-based templates that have layouts, CSS stylings, resources to add template-specific assets, and settings to fine-tune the PDF output.
- Presets: a configuration node that can be created individually or globally for DITA maps. These configurations provide authoring options to choose a template along with many other options to control the PDF output.
The tech stack used behind Native PDF Publishing Engine is:
- PDF Utilities JAR
Here’s a diagram that depicts the process steps:
The Native PDF Template feature ships with many features that are essential for producing a PDF output.
- The ability to add multiple layouts for the PDF pages.
- Print configurations.
- Dynamic Table of Contents
- Friendly User Interface
- Security features like password protection, document restriction, etc.
- Printing color spaces (RGB, CMYK, Pantone)
- Document compression
PDF output options in AEM
AEM does offer the PDF generation in other two ways as well for the DITA content. But you can bet on the native PDF templates, which provide more flexibility, faster rollout, and productivity.
- Native PDF Publishing: Uses W3C CSS, media standards, and scripts.
- DITA OT—Open Tool Kit Plug-in, which requires a custom plug-in to be deployed. The verbosity of XSLT and XML syntax makes it harder.
- FrameMaker Publishing Server: Requires configurations from AEM to FrameMaker Server. Additional licensing costs are involved.
If you host DITA content on AEM, the Native PDF Template feature provides best-in-class benefits compared to any other solution on the market.
- Infrastructure Investment Reduction: The solution is native to the AEM, so the customer can completely avoid the investment or cost associated with other infrastructure or products in producing a PDF output for DITA content.
- Quicker delivery: In terms of development, quality testing, and maintenance, compared to DITA OT plugin-based PDF output generation, which cuts down on the costs associated with complex deliveries.
- Reliability: The product is well documented, and dedicated Adobe support is available. Down the line, Adobe is planning to integrate many more complex PDF features into the product.
If you’re looking to solve a business use case, feel free to reach out to us.
Cloud Services: https://experienceleague.adobe.com/docs/experience-manager-guides-learn/tutorials/release-info/release-notes/cloud-release-notes/release-notes-2023.2.0.html?lang=en
On-prem/Managed Services: https://experienceleague.adobe.com/docs/experience-manager-guides-learn/tutorials/release-info/release-notes/on-prem-release-notes/release-notes-4.2.html?lang=en