Professionals working in engineering and CAD across industries—from architecture and construction to manufacturing—could have an international PDF standard in the next couple of years, if a committee developing the PDF/E standard can iron out issues such as implementing 3D, digital signatures and rights management.
This week represents a milestone for PDF/E, as the U.S. wing of the PDF/E Working Group submits the current draft to the ISO for review by a joint international working group.
The group, jointly formed by enterprise content management association AIIM and printing industry association NPES, includes representatives from software companies, as well as engineering and document management professionals.
Like the PDF/X standard for prepress and PDF/A for electronic archiving, PDF/E covers a subset of the overall PDF spec. The committee discusses best practices in the field among its members and customers of its constituent vendors—including Adobe, Agile, Bentley Systems, Hewlett Packard, Océ, Intel, PTC, Layton Graphics, Dell, UGS PLM Solutions, among others—and assembles a draft standard.
In January, the working group readied its PDF/E draft as a "new working item," which it will formally submit this week to ISO. Thats basically an order form for a new ISO standard, as Diana Helander, Adobes business development manager for worldwide standards, puts it.