Thursday, June 1, 2017

Annotating PDFs on Linux

Most of my working day is spent reading.

Usually, this means poring over some PDF document, and scribbling my thoughts - preferably on the PDF itself. I find these markups extremely helpful, when I want to recall the gist, or when it is time to synthesize "knowledge" from multiple sources.

I use Linux on both my desktops (home and work), and the usual applications (Evince, Okular, etc.) for marking up PDFs are inadequate in one form or another. Adobe Reader, while bloated, used to do the job. But they don't release a Linux version anymore.

The solution that best fits my needs currently is Foxit Reader. Although you can't use the standard software manager (ex. apt-get on Ubuntu) to get it, you can easily download a 32- or 64-bit version from their website.

The "installation guide" tells you how to do the rest [unzip, cd, and run the executable installer].

On my Linux Mint systems it was easy, peasy!

The software itself is intuitive. You can highlight, add text, stick in comments, and draw basic shapes. The changes you make are permanently saved into the PDF, so that when you use another application to reopen, the changes persist.

It is cross-platform, so you can get a version on any OS (including iOS) you want.

No comments: