Investintech.com Releases Sonic PDF Creator 3.0!

Great news for avid PDF and Investintech users! We’re excited to announce that today we release the latest update to our main PDF creation software:  Sonic PDF Creator 3.0.

In this new version, we’ve provided yet another great  PDF solution for you  once again. This new update includes a newly designed interface, new and improved viewing capabilities and enhanced performance tweaks for all of Sonic’s main PDF editing features.

Don’t worry about re-learning everything for this new update. You’ll be glad to know that the same great Sonic features are still there–they’re only faster, better and more powerful than before. So you can jump right in.

Check out what Sonic PDF Creator 3.0 has to offer.

What’s New?

Sonic PDF Creator 3.0 Advanced Streamlined Interface

You’ll notice that the Sonic landscape has changed drastically. This Sonic 3.0 version introduces a new advanced graphical interface that improves the way in which you create, edit and interact with PDFs.

Updated One-Click Command Toolbar

First off, there’s theToolbar with a fresh new look and layout. To top it off, we’ve added a couple of new commands to the main roster of handy features, which makes editing and creating PDFs more efficient.

Sonic PDF Creator 3.0 Toolbar

All-New Quick Access Sidebar

Second, you can’t miss the brand new side bar.  This is where Sonic  3.0 has made it even easier for you to manipulate your PDF files. In this area you can easily adjust and select the options for almost all of your PDF editing needs.

Sonic PDF Creator 3.0 Settings and customization
For instance, when you need to insert or extract pages, the options for that selected action will open in the side bar.  You don’t have to leave the PDF viewing window at all. The features are conveniently right there in the same window for easy access.

Improved PDF Viewing

Third, you’ll also notice that the viewing controls have changed their location. Instead of having it on the top, we’ve moved it to the right hand side, keeping it intuitively in reach and in line with the new layout of this latest version.

Sonic PDF Creator 3.0 Improved Viewing Controlls

Sonic’s PDF  viewing technology have been tweaked to give you a better viewing experience of your PDF content. Thus, you get an overall higher quality page display and better interaction capabilities with your PDF file.

In a nutshell, Sonic PDF Creator 3.0 offers nothing less than an enhanced PDF user experience whether you have a complex PDF to edit or a secure PDF to create.  This latest version can get the job done like never before!

So check it out and feel the difference.

UPDATE:  Sonic PDF Creator is discontinued. For more info go here.

Top 5 Alternative Search Engines For Discovering Great Images On Flickr

If you’ve ever surfed online for images, then you’ve undoubtedly heard of Flickr.com–the major online photo management site where you can upload, discover, and share your photos. Flickr is a great place to find some of the best images and photos on the web.

However, because there are so many uploaded images, Flickr becomes a bottomless resource that can be hard to search.  Flickr does, indeed, allow you to tailor a search on the site. You can search for photos added by tags, place, sets, and galleries. You can also search by date–images recently added, added by month, or the most interesting uploads in the past 7 days.  Flickr  even lets you search for photos taken by a specific camera!

Although those search options are readily available, they can become a bit limited or inefficient at times when you can’t find what you’re looking for.

Ever spend hours trying to find the perfect image? Combing through the same tags over and over again?  Clicking on each image for related leads? It’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack.

Fortunately, there are a few alternative search tools that can make for a more efficient search. So if Flickr’s usual search filters don’t cut it, try a few of these to get an image search that works for you.

1. Flickriver

Finding Images On Flickriver
Flickriver is a web-based viewer with one major difference from the original Flicker — it allows quick viewing of thousands of photos with a ‘river of photos’ option. This means you never have to click ‘next’ to load the upcoming, new page.

Since Flickriver is a part of Flicker, it allows viewing photos from Flickr members, taken by many different photographers, including both amateurs and professionals. You can click on any photo and get the official Flickr page where you can contact the photographer and see how you can use their images.

It’s probably the fastest photo viewing tool and because of its unusual and convenient viewing experience, Flickriver allows people to easily discover more relevant photographers and photos!

2. TinEye

Reverse Image Search Engine

TinEye is an image search and recognition company with its mission to make their images easily searchable and accessible to everyone. Their focus is on reverse image search, making it possible to find where your images appear online. Simply upload an image, search it by URL, or drag and drop your pictures to start your search. After a few seconds you will get instant results.

3. Picsearch

Picsearch Image Database

Picsearch helps you to search images more easily as it connects users to the wide visual resources of the internet. It uses a unique design technology to crawl the web and create a searchable index of discovered images.

How does it work? A user searches for an image after which a query is sent to Picsearch. The result is a set of  thumbnail images that are as relevant as possible. If the user clicks on a thumbnail, the original website is opened where you can find where that image is placed.

With its 3 main features, Picsearch image tool stands apart from the rest of its competitors. It has a patent-pending indexing algorithm, as well as several family-friendly features that allow children to surf in safety. Any material that is not suitable for kids is separated by an advanced filtering systems. Last, but not the least, the site is user-friendly and perfect for fun and games, but also for serious business users.

4. Compfight

Finding Photos On Compfight

With Compfight you can get that visual inspiration you need to finish any project you are working on! It’s an image search engine, specifically designed to locate images for blogs.

The core of the Compfight experience lies in its various filters and amazing options. Combine that with a smart and easy-to-use tool and you will quickly discover all the images you need in the most efficient way possible.

5. Imgur

Searching Photos On Imgur

Imgur is a perfect place if you wish to share your images online and enjoy some of the most popular and awesome pictures you can find online. It’s being used by millions of people, every single day. You can get those amazing pictures and be entertained and motivated by funny, inspiring and helpful images and stories from all over the world in no time.

Imgur is currently ranked one of the top 50 worldwide websites where each month its images are viewed billions of times.

Regardless of which images you’re looking for, it’s always a good idea to have a few tricks up your sleeve when it comes to searching Flickr.com.  If you can get creative with these search tools, you can quickly tailor down your search and navigate around Flickr’s databases even more efficiently in no time.

How 3 Investintech Tools Can Save Your Academic Life

School’s just started and already you’re starting to sink into your own routine. Whether that means mapping out the quickest route to class or finding the best study spots along the way, you need to make sure everything works smoothly for you in the academic world.

As a tech user, it means getting your laptop and gadgets all set to keep up with you on your daily study grind. With the rise of tech gadgets and the popularity of the Internet, the academic landscape is changing.  More group participation is done via forum discussion, class notes are being posted up online, and text books are being downloaded from the web.

However, organizing your arsenal of software tools can be tough when you can’t anticipate where or when you’ll need it.  If you’re a user of our software and asking yourself, where and how Investintech software fits in with your academic routine, it’s time to take a closer look. Here are a couple of tip offs.

1. SlimPDF Reader

One way students are upping their productivity these days is to use a laptop in class. It’s easier to type up lecture notes and it eliminates the need for multiple notebooks.  Moreover, instead of a 13 or 15 inch laptop, students are now resorting to netbooks. They’re small, efficient, and more convenient on-the-go than a laptop is.

Netbooks, however, while great for mobility, aren’t so great for the hard-core major software programs you have on your desktop.  For instance, Adobe Reader is a notable resource hog, taking up a good portion of your desktop hard drive, let alone your netbook. So you’ll need the smallest applications you can find.  Luckily, SlimPDF Reader is only 1.43 MB.

Slim PDF Reader Screenshot

SlimPDF Reader gives you the essentials needed for a quick clean viewing experience without the bloat.

So if a prof scans in a PDF sideways, SlimPDF can rotate it right side up with a single click from the toolbar.  And as PDFs aren’t always created with a readability and navigation in mind, you can zoom in (up to 400%), quickly skip to any page, and easily search the file for keywords. Copying simple text is also made easy–just select your content and CTRL+ C it. You can paste it quickly into another application.

2. Free Online PDF to Word Converter

As mentioned, most professors will post up lecture notes or slides online. Of course, this makes it easier for everyone, as a) you don’t have to worry about getting everything down, and b) you have spot-on accurate notes from the professor  himself. Definitely a resource you want to cash in on for any future assignment.

But, I bet you can guess what format these notes will more than likely be in: the hard-to-edit PDF format. This is where a PDF to Word converter saves the day. You can convert PDF to Word instantly using our free online PDF to Word conversion service.

3. Docx to Doc Converter Online

With the release of Microsoft Office Word 2007 came a new default format, .docx, a format that not everyone is using. In fact, most users are still quite attached to the .doc format.  For users with Microsoft Office Word 2007, they can simply save to .doc by changing the Save As format before they save their file.

DOC to DOCX converter

Yet for those who are receiving a .docx file, it isn’t as easy. Students on the Mac OSX platform using Pages need to import the .doc file to Mac, but have no direct way of converting it. Others may not even be using Microsoft Office 2007, but older versions with no way of opening it.

This .docx to .doc converter is perfect for any difficulties you may come across, whether it be a deadline, lack of compatibility, or being locked out of your email accounts.

DOC to DOCX Converter Interface

It lets you bypass all those hurdles. It’s free, you can use it regardless of the platform you’re using, you can access it anytime online, no registration is needed, and you get the file converted instantly without having to leave the site.

Should We Add Another Format To The PDF-Killer List?

An interesting tidbit for this week. There’s a new format on the block and it looks like it’s drumming up some buzz as the next PDF-Killer.

The last one to hit the industry, if I remember correctly, was the XML Paper Specification (XPS) format  about 4 years ago when Microsoft Office 2007 was being released with XPS creation capabilities.  This time around, it’s the CDF format—Computable Document Format, a newly innovated open format that puts “interactive documents” on another level.

Having been developed by the team over at Wolfram.com, the CDF format uses mathematical computation technology to render the live interactive element of its content. The company is known for its computing software program and platform, Mathematica, which, in a nutshell, is used for computing data visualizations needed in fields dealing with complex data, information analysis, and mathematical formulae.

What is the CDF format?

According to the site, the CDF is “as everyday as a document, but as interactive as an app.”  Instead of simply viewing static text, images, and tables, with a CDF document you can manipulate them through inputting data, clicking on controls, and moving sliders. If you have a graph with data calculated and projected over time, you can modify those values and see the changes visualized–on the spot.

Looking at the CDF files they have on-site, you can see why it’s being called a PDF-Killer. From a user point of view, the CDF format shares a lot of the same basic similarities and uses as the PDF: it requires a file viewer (CDF Player), can contain different types of content, and is only editable in Mathematica or other CDF content creators (creating an interactive CDF actually requires a bit of coding rather than a one click creation method, though).

The PDF already has interaction capabilities with the ability to play videos, Flash games, and manipulate 3D objects. But so far, as Conrad Wolfram (strategic & international development director of Wolfram) points out, those types of interactivity are pre-generated for you.

The CDF format provides a unique way of creating, consuming, and understanding informational content.  As it is with all formats, though, each has its own strengths and uses, some of which are necessary, some not. Simple resumes and articles, for example, are still perfectly fine as a PDF. Live data and textbooks, however, may be better in CDF.

Rather than a question of will the CDF replace the PDF, I think the question facing PDF users is how the CDF format will interact with PDF files over the long run. The format was just launched, so it’s still in the early stages of adoption. So far, as per the FAQ, you can import content from PDFs and the CDF Player plugin is only supported by web browsers (no embedding CDF files in PDF, for instance).

Download the CDF player and take look at a few CDF examples in action for yourself.

How To Convert RSS Feeds To PDF

As computer users, we’ve become overly concerned with turning paper work into digital files that we sometimes forget that there are documents and written content that have never been paper to begin with.

For instance, the RSS feeds you check in with on a daily basis, although treated and read like newspapers, were never meant to be made into newspapers. Or were they?

Whether its Computerworld, TechCrunch, Reuters, or the Investintech blog you subscribe to, as long as it has an RSS feed, FeedJournal can turn it into your own personalized PDF newspaper.

It may sound a bit counter-intuitive, but if you’re simply nostalgic for old school newspaper columns, or just can’t sit down and relax with the morning “laptop” to read your favourite subscriptions, then it’s a site worth checking out. Here’s a quick overview. There are two versions of FeedJournal to choose from—FeedJournal Reader and FeedJournal Publisher.

After creating a free account with FeedJournal Reader, you can submit the link of any valid RSS, RDF or Atom Feed to your Feed management page. Once the RSS feed is added, you get to select which feeds and which postings you want to publish.
Journal Feed

If you’re looking to create a newspaper of your own content, you can do that as well with a FeedJournal Publisher account (for a monthly subscription). As an author, you can publish your content with each new posting as a separate story, divide PDF articles into sections and even brand your PDF newspaper with your company logo, header and copyright information. FeedJournal also offers a widget to add to your site, creating a thumbnail view for users that hotlinks to the full PDF file. You can even update your PDF newspaper with your latest postings so users get the most updated content.

Made for hard copy or not, RSS content is just a bit more accessible now. You can check out more details on this at the FeedJournal site.