Why do we still use PDFs?

In 2017, technology plays a larger role in the classroom than ever, and as a result many schools are moving their whopping $2 billion, spent on paper each year, toward digital devices, and PDFs are replacing paper. Moving documents to the cloud saves not only the hours that are spent on copying and printing but also the copious amounts of paper; everything that the students would want to use is now at their fingertips because of the cloud. The Williams Compliance Act, an act wherein the students in the state of California are given the right to access the materials and resources outside of their classrooms, has added to the volume of digital documents as most of these are only available in PDF format. And, while PDF’s have their advantages, they also have their disadvantages.


PDFs are Universal
While creating and sharing documents is relatively easy, not all people use the same programs to create them. Whoever said that variety is the spice of life clearly never experienced the frustration of being sent a document that has reformatted itself or worse, cannot be opened. PDFs, on the other hand, are universal and can be opened on any device at any time.

PDFs are Secure
One of the best and worst traits of a PDF is how secure they are. In a professional setting, there couldn’t be much worse than mistakingly handing over to students who feel their need to get creative on an assignment you spent hours preparing. While the security of a PDF can be great for certain documents, it effectively gives any user of the document very little usability. By nature, PDFs are locked, uneditable documents that give the users of the document significant challenges if they want to use the document beyond a reader.


PDFs don’t naturally fit for schools looking to go paperless.
One of the great struggles that educators are facing is the use of PDFs when schools are attempting to go paperless. Yes, they are of great use if you simply want to read the document at hand, but as we all know, this doesn’t work so well in an interactive and collaborative learning environment.

Most PDF software are expensive and complicated.
Adobe, the company that proposed the document in the first place, offer an expensive and complicated solution. Talk to any teacher who has worked with Adobe Acrobat, and you are bound to hear of the many struggles that they have faced. Having worked with Adobe suite for the past 10 years, their struggles are heard and understood. Add to this the cost, and you have an expensive, complicated, but much-needed solution.

Various types of PDF
Not all PDF documents are created the same, as there can be a variation in the input of document information. This affects the way that the conversion and viewing functions work. There are two types of PDF, namely, scanned PDFs and native PDFs. A scanned PDF is one that is made up of physically printed documents that have been scanned onto a device before being converted into PDF, and then there are native PDFs that are made from a document that was created electronically. The variation in the way the PDF is produced affects things like text detection and quality, with some scanned documents being of poor quality, thus making the scan virtually unusable.

With all of the pros and cons of PDFs, it is obvious that there is a strong need for a solution. This is where Kami comes in. Kami is your all-in-one document reader and annotator. It’s affordable, intuitive, and user-friendly, with an uncomplicated interface and tools that students can easily identify and use. Kami supports any document format – even PDF – and has one of the best OCR tools on the market, making going paperless a breeze. As a teacher, you can even send and receive assignments through Google Classroom and other Learning Management Systems. With Kami, you can work on any document as if you had printed it off – all within your web browser. Kami is the best solution for working with PDFs anywhere, anytime.

To learn more, click here.

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