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iText In Action - Creating and Manipulating PDF
by Bruno Lowagie

Manning Publications
1 edition
December 2006
656 pages

Reviewed by Ulf Dittmer, March 2007
  (9 of 10)

The iText project is one of the -or maybe the- most popular Java library for creating PDF documents. This book, written by one of the principal developers, shows in great detail how iText can be used for working with PDFs. It touches on topics ranging from text, images, graphics, tables and fonts to forms and fields, interactive content, digital signatures, and web applications. Each aspect is explained with numerous examples that can be applied to real-world problems right away.

The book also delves into the underlying PDF internals and PostScript details, and shows off capabilities that are not commonly used, yet make for impressive documents.

The style is light and easily approachable, and if a particular subject is not of interest to the reader, it can usually be just skimmed over (or entirely skipped) without impacting the understanding of later chapters.

This reviewer recommends the book for everyone using iText as a companion to the -quite extensive- online documentation that is available as well. It covers many features of PDF that a casual user of Adobe Reader would not even think were possible, and for which the javadocs alone are not sufficient introduction.

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