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iText provides open source PDF tech for developers & business users

By Sara Barker
Mon 7 Dec 2020
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Look around the office. Chances are, you’ll find that paper has its uses but for the most part, businesses have adopted digital documents like the versatile and powerful PDF format. 

It used to be that nothing could beat a handwritten signature on paper, but digital signatures and security have evolved to the point where digital documents are now an accepted and ubiquitous part of business.

However, challenges still remain, such as how to create, manipulate, process, archive, secure, sign, and extract data from PDFs at a high volume.

It would be easy to assume that there are plenty of tools that could achieve these results, but there are few who can do so under different licensing models.

iText offers PDF libraries for integrating PDF generation and manipulation capabilities into applications.

It’s highly likely that you’ve come across a PDF that has been handled in some way by iText’s code. iText's point of difference is that it can work with the back end to enable organisations to perform tasks such as high-volume document generation, processing, and manipulation.

iText is also a company that has embraced open source software for the last 20 years, unlike competitors that often keep their software and solutions completely closed source.  

Many businesses are looking for open source software partners because they understand that innovation and creativity comes from the open source community. The community thoroughly reviews and tests its software, which means any bugs are quickly sorted out.

While closed source software does play a practical role in some situations, particularly in the government and finance sectors where they would rather not open up software.

This is why iText offers both open source AGPL and commercial licensing models.

AGPL is the Affero General Public License, which enables developers and organisations to use and modify iText applications and source code software through freely available code. 

Open source is a fantastic way of opening up software code to the world, and the iText PDF library is free to use under the AGPL. 

There are conditions for AGPL-based code use, including the requirement to disclose all source code obtained from AGPL, as well as source code belonging to the organisation’s own product and web-based application integrations. 

Further, developers must only use iText's open source products in an AGPL-licensed environment. These conditions are devised to ensure that code remains open source and is only applied to software that is also open source.

For developers and organisations that prefer to maintain full control of their code, iText commercial licenses allow users to protect intellectual property and receive expert assistance and support with development.

iText is more than just a company that offers a PDF library to developers; it is also working on a line of PDF tools for business users. These tools include iText DITO, a data-driven, template-based PDF generator which enables both developers and non-developers to quickly create and maintain templates for PDF generation using an intuitive browser-based editor.

Meanwhile, iText pdf2Data allows easy access to data locked away inside PDFs. It offers a simple framework to recognize data inside PDF documents, based on rules you define in a template.

So whether you're after the freedom to help your developers create their own iText-based source code or a low-code solution that simply gets things done, iText has something for you.

Request a demo or contact iText here.

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