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Rich-Media PDF and Disruptive Technologies

When a new technology causes another technology to become less valuable or even obsolete, it is often described as a disruptive technology. Many corporate Internet developers who created Web pages and cool Flash movies realized they might now be relegated to making a single button on a home page that says Click Here to Download Our PDF eBrochure. Since that eBrochure was probably created by the print designers, the Web designers would be left out of the creative process. In addition, if the PDF was successful, the budgets for "Internet media" might move to the print divisions, and because eBrochures do not have to be printed, the budget for printing would be cut back too. As a result, the Web developers and the printers would be paid less, and the print developers would be paid more. Thus, the introduction of rich-media PDF into the workflow would cause a lot of disruption to the very employees who originally created the media for a company.

So, it was in the printers' and the Web developers' best interests to make sure rich-media PDF eBrochures would never replace their jobs—this is probably the reason you see so many bad PDFs on the Web today. The Flash developers and the print department weren't focused on making a pleasurable experience for the end user. They were not thinking "convergence."

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