QUESTION: What is Adobe Acrobat?

ANSWER: Adobe Acrobat is a set of software programs that let you make PDF files, look at them on your screen, modify them to some degree, print them, and utilize them in various ways. The Adobe Acrobat software, which is sometimes referred to as just "Acrobat," was developed by Adobe Systems Incorporated.

With Adobe Acrobat you can:

  • create PDF files
  • look at PDF files on the screen
  • print PDF files
  • examine the characteristics of PDF files
  • search for text in PDF files
  • make many kinds of modifications to PDF files
  • password-protect PDF files
  • save Web sites as PDF files
  • create and use "Acrobat forms," which are data-entry forms that are based on the PDF format.
  • easily work on a PDF file simultaneously with colleagues
  • save PDF files in RTF format (RTF stands for "Rich Text Format." RTF files can be opened in Microsoft Word, WordPad, and other commonly used text editors.)
  • extract images from PDF files
  • open some types of non-PDF documents in Acrobat
  • utilize built-in batch-processing tools to improve productivity
  • exploit XML technology to integrate back-end systems with form data and metadata that is contained in PDF files
  • ...and do many other things.
For some of the tasks listed above, all you need is the Adobe Acrobat software itself. For other tasks, you need plug-in software that works with the Adobe Acrobat software.