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Factors To Consider when Choosing a Document Format
Document formatting is a process of converting one type of file format into a different document format. A process, which is especially valuable as every format pursues different objectives.
There are numerous file formats available on today's market. But how to choose the right one? Several factors have to be taken into consideration when choosing the best format for your document.
This article is designed with the purpose to determine at least few of the most important ones.
Document editing is one of them. In most cases, editing a document is required in order to shape it in accordance with your needs and preferences.
Furthermore, files should be reasonably compact and should be capable of being read by as many people as possible.
What is more, they should be able to replicate the original format as closely as possible.
These are just few of the preferred functions a universal file format should contain.
Unfortunately, reality is that such ideal document file format doesn't exist. A choice of a perfect format thus depends on each individual case and its characteristics.
To be more explicit, you need to answer yourself what exactly do you want to do with your document. Do you only want tocreate and shape it according to your needs, do you want to keep it for yourself, or do you want to distribute it as well?
The latter case is particularly difficult as document editing and providing it to a wider audience preclude each other, at least in terms of document file format.
Is there anything that can be done in case you want first to create a document and distribute it later, both in different file formats?
Of course, you can.Namely,document conversion is the answer as it enables you to convert one file type into another with ease and without losing inherent characteristics of each format.
Set out below are some of the best formats for different jobs and their crucial advantages that might persuade you into using them.
Again, nothing is predestined once you have decided for a particular file format. Document conversion is nowadays a simple and widely accessibleoperation.
Microsoft Word and its .doc and .docx formats are probably the most known and widely used document file types. And for a good reason so.
Considering the wide use, Microsoft Word is a pretty good tool for distribution as majority of people use and have access to this kind of file format.
Prior to introduction of Microsoft Office 2007, .doc was the main format. Because .doc had the possibility of including macros – custom written programs that often contained viruses or malware, .doc format has been replaced.
.Docx is now the new standard native format which cannot contain macros at all.
But what makes Microsoft Word especially attractive is its document editing capacity, rather than the distribution quality.
When using Microsoft Word, you are able to edit your document by using features, such as Styles, Style Sets, Themes, and many more. All of which allow you to save a lot of time.
The possibility of using a wide range of editing tools and its simplicity are thus the most important features in .docx file formats.
To conclude, if you need to edit a document, use Microsoft Word as it presents you with great opportunities when it comes to document adaptation.
Portable Document Format or PDF was initially created as a mean of exchanging and distributing documents with complex formatting.
Two major advantages are connected with using PDF format. Firstly, it is universal as a vast majority of applications is able to create PDF files, and anyone with Adobe Reader, free PDF reader, can see them.
Secondly, this format can replicate almost anything you see on a printed page. PDF formats are also great because they can't be tampered with without leaving a digital footprint.
PDF is therefore great for sending documents as it is a very compact, safe, and common document format.
There are, nevertheless some major downsides that might deter you from using PDF.
PDF files can become really big in size, especially if they contain several photos or other graphic content.
Although size can be optimized by using PDF-authoring software, a big file size may still pose a major obstacle when it comes to distribution of a large quantity of documents.
Another potential drawback when it comes to PDF file format is that it cannot be edited, or at least special PDF software is required in order to do so.
This, again, is not necessarily a bad thing, especially if you don't want your document to be tampered with.
Nevertheless, .docx file format seems to be more suitable for editing purposes as it offers much greater scope of editing options.
The bottom line is that PDF is an ideal format for the distribution of formatted documents and not so great in case you want the recipient to use the contents again.
Presented above are two the most widely used file formats; .docx and PDF. Each of them has its own unique advantages and disadvantages.
In case you want to have the best of both worlds, for instance, write a great text with your own style and theme and then distribute it to other people without giving them a chance to interfere with the content, document formatting is the answer.
Such free PDF converters allow you to convert a document from .docx file format into PDF type or vice versa, all with only few clicks of a button.
To conclude, factors that should be considered when choosing a right document format depend on whether you want to create and edit your own content and whether you want to distribute this content to a wider audience and allow them to edit your content as well.
Nevertheless, your decision on which file format to use isn't final as there is always a possibility of document formatting.