Why Is It Generally Impossible To Edit PDF Files Like Microsoft Word?

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Why is it generally impossible to edit PDF files like Microsoft Word documents?

I note that many of the replies to your question seem to be ignoring the “like Microsoft Word documents” part. Yes, it is possible to edit a PDF file. It can almost never be done as simply and intuitively as a Microsoft Word document or any other simple text-based document. The reason for this is that the PDF format was not designed with the idea of exchanging files for editing. It was specifically engineered to be able to produce a file that would look and print exactly the same regardless of the platform it was being opened on. Technically, a digital file is simply a container for data. Different file formats contain different amounts and types of data. PDF files generally contain a greater amount of positioning data and data that is used to affect the appearance of the file when viewed, such as the fonts used for text throughout the document. Not just the name and class of the font, but the entire font - for every font used. Text is placed precisely on the page, with each row of text generally being a separate object on the page rather that flowed across and around objects like most word processors do it. The problem is especially egregious with a very common source of PDF files - scanned documents. In order to produce something as close as possible to the original document, most scanning software with OCR will build an insanely complex document with far more text boxes than a human being would have used if producing the document by hand. Most documents that you’re going to end up scanning will have been produced by word processors or publishing software, anyway. The worst cases are when the PDF file is simply an embedded image of a scanned text document. These, of course, can not be edited in any meaningful way. To summarize, the reason it’s nearly impossible to easily edit PDF files is that the files were not designed to be edited and the software used to edit them when it is possible requires one to learn a different skill set from the one t normally use to edit text documents. Don’t let someone who is an Edit In Pdf master make you feel bad because t can use a tool to edit a file that its creator almost certainly never intended for anyone but herself to edit.

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