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AlivePDF Showcase – EnergyTransparency

Ben Smith (@fezec) on Twitter just sent me this really nice project : EnergyTransparency.

AlivePDF is being used for the PDF generation, below an example of the pages generated, and here a link to the kind of PDF you can today generate at runtime with AlivePDF ;)

Page 1 - EnergyTransparencyPage 2 - EnergyTransparencyPage 3 - EnergyTransparency

Little update!

It's been a little while since I posted about AlivePDF. I just came back from Max in Los Angeles, and it is amazing to see how many people are using AlivePDF and love the library, seriously this is really cool :)

I am sorry for the lack of updates recently, I have been working on side projects and mainly the Stage3D effort part of the Flash Player 11 / AIR 3 release.

I also needed to take a little break on AlivePDF cause I worked a lot on it and needed to stay away, to come back with fresh ideas and energy.

I was happy to get a few emails from developers who wanted to add optimizations and features to AlivePDF, thanks again guys, great work.

Using AlivePDF to print from AIR Javascript via ActionScript 3

Murray Hopkins just started a series of nice tutorials about printing from AIR with AlivePDF!
Make sure to check his tutorials! Great job Murray!

AlivePDF in Browserlab ? :)

I just noticed that Browserlab ( does not integrate PDF export. Hey, Browserlab team :) Why not using AlivePDF with a few lines of code with the addImageStream API to generate a nice PDF with a screenshot on each page, that users could send to their clients ?

AlivePDF 0.1.5 [RC] new API’s

AlivePDF 0.1.5 RC is finally there and has a lot of new features. As you may have seen, font embedding is now supported and a lot of new things, as a result a lot of new API's have been introduced. Hopefully the documentation is now updated. To get started with those API's here is a brief introduction :

Font Embedding support :

You can embed TTF or PFM fonts now and use them through your PDF document. To use an embedded font, just use the EmbeddedFont class and pass the TTF stream to the EmbeddedFont class constructor, then pass it to the setFont method which will automatically call the addFont method if needed :

var msg:String = "Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit."

var myEmbeddedFont:EmbeddedFont = new EmbeddedFont( new fontStream(), new afmStream(), CodePage.CP1252 );
myPDF.setFont( myEmbeddedFont, 20 );
myPDF.writeText(12, msg);

As you can see, three parameters are required, the first one is the font stream as a ByteArray, the second one is the AFM file which describes the font, that you can get easily for a font or generate it through a tool like TTF2PT1 or even online here. The third parameter is the codepage to use for your font, which defines the character code mapping between 0 and 255. Note that, only CodePage.1252 is supported for now, but this will be fixed in the final release.

If you want to use standard fonts, known as non-embedded fonts, just use the CoreFont class :

var msg:String = "Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit."

var myCoreFont:IFont = new CoreFont ( FontFamily.HELVETICA_BOLD );
myPDF.setFont( myCoreFont, 20 );
myPDF.writeText(12, msg);

Cell API additions

New Cell API's have been introduced allowing you to force its content to fit in a cell :

var shortText:String = 'This text is short enough.';
var longText:String = 'This text is way too long.';

p.addCellFitScale(0, 10,shortText,1,1);
p.addCellFitScale(0, 10,longText,1,1,'',1);




EPS Support :

You can now draw EPS or AI files (8.0 version or below required) into your PDF, by using the addEPSImage method, more infos here :

A drawSector() API has been added to allow you to create dynamic charts very easily, the following code creates a simple pie chart :

var xCenter:int = 105;
var yCenter:int = 60;
var radius:int = 40;

p.lineStyle( new RGBColor ( 0x000000 ), .1 );
p.beginFill( new RGBColor ( 0x0099CC ) );
p.drawSector(xCenter, yCenter, radius, 20, 120);
p.beginFill( new RGBColor ( 0x336699 ) );
p.drawSector(xCenter, yCenter, radius, 120, 250);
p.beginFill( new RGBColor ( 0x6598FF ) );
p.drawSector(xCenter, yCenter, radius, 250, 20);

BeginBitmapFill Drawing API

Just like in Flash Player, a beginBitmapFill API has been added, more infos here :

Spot Color Support

As requested, Spot color support has been introduced, more infos here :

Document-level navigation

As requested, document-level navigation has been added, more infos here :

CSV Grid Export

As requested, the Grid class allows you to export its data as a CSV file:

So, what's next ? Some final fixes in the UnicodePDF class for other characters like (greek, russian) and a new Invoice API to make invoice generation smooth. I have to finalize the integration of the AlivePDF extension for templates created by Gonzalo. But I may have some interesting news concerning exporting drawn vectors to the PDF, without having to rasterize stuff ;)

AlivePDF (0.1.5 RC) Font Embedding Support refactoring and more :)

I am happy to announce that AlivePDF 0.1.5 is getting better and better. More than font embedding support which is working now, I have just uploaded on the SVN the latest version with gradients (not 100% complete) and barcode support. Apart from that, some important code cleaning and refactoring has been done, some new API's have been introduced like setStartingPage, or even addEPSImage to embed Adobe Illustrator files on a page.

I tried to address all the bugs you guys posted on the google code issue page (thanks everybody for taking the time to post bugs!). Some of them may not fixed yet, but I am happy to say that the most recurrent ones have been addressed. I will post in the following days some details about the new API's, examples, demo application, to show you how to use the latest API's especially for font embedding.

Next on the list is SWF embedding support and the famous alpha images support, which I have time now to focus on.

Stay tuned, there is even more coming ;)

Santa Claus and AlivePDF

Christmas-gift-red-bowRecently, I saw a message from wayne on the AlivePDF forum, asking for some gifts related to AlivePDF. It made me smile cause actually I was able to spend a whole day on the embedding font problem and finally made it to work :) It seems like Santa Claus is bringing font embedding to AlivePDF, finally!

Here is a PDF generated just now with the upcoming AlivePDF update ;)

I will post that new release to the SVN in a few days, I am heading to New York for a few days for New Year's eve, Happy new year to everyone, 2010 will rock with AlivePDF!

AlivePDF used in Balsamiq Mockups

If there is one AIR application that I love, it's called Mockups from Balsamiq.
In September, Peldi the creator of this great tool asked if it was possible to add internal link support and fix the outlines feature in AlivePDF in order to add PDF export to Mockups.
This was added and Mockups, and there you go :


Mockups is now able to export nice and interactive PDF's to print or illustrate your mockups.
Here is an example of what Balsamiq Mockups could generate :)

The end of the linux bug : writeMultiByte()

Just a very quick note to let you know that the forthcoming Flash Player 10.1 is fixing the writeMultiByte on Linux. We will keep the fix in AlivePDF to ensure backward compatibility with previous players, but it's just good news to see this bug fixed if you have different projects relying on this method ;)

Some Alchemy in AlivePDF !

Here is a great news for AlivePDF, I am currently considering using Alchemy to handle all the fonts parsing (TrueType/OpenType) through a c lib called TTF2PT1. This is the cool thing with Alchemy, any c or c++ lib can be compiled to AVM2 bytecode and used in the Flash Player. If you know the TTF2PT1 lib, it handles all the font parsing that AlivePDF is almost doing. The cool thing is that this lib is fully working and the extraction of glyph widths is perfect and AlivePDF will benefit from that.

If you guys remember the current problem we have in AlivePDF when embedding fonts, glyphs may overlap and be incorrectly positioned, this lib will fix all that and handle even complex fonts. The cool thing is that thanks to Alchemy, this c lib will run and do all its work in the Flash Player and smoothly interact with the AlivePDF core engine.

Such a decision could mean that the final release of AlivePDF with complete and fully working font embedding support will be Flash Player 10 only, as Alchemy is Flash Player 10 only. I know you guys may be against that, so the font embedding logic will be given as a seperated SWC than you can link as an extension of AlivePDF so that the core PDF engine from AlivePDF stays fully compatible with Flash Player 9.

So now, let's see a demo, if you download TTF2PT1 and ask to generate the .AFM file for a font with the following command (-a MyFont.ttf) you'll end up with an AFM file (Adobe Font Metrics) which is gold for AlivePDF cause it gives all the informations needed for embedding a font in a PDF.

Click anywhere in the SWF below, the C lib will be called to extract the font characteristics (from a MyriadWebPro.ttf file) and produce an nice AFM file :

A Flash animation should have appeared here, but it seems that your browser has an older version of the Flash Player or it is not installed at all. Please, install the last release of the Flash Player now, then reload this page.

Ok, I admit it, nothing really exciting but believe me, it's a huge step for AlivePDF! :)