Prerequisite knowledge
Familiarity with basic DPS terminology.
 
User level: All
 
Required products Sample files
snagit-setup-readme.zip
By downloading software from the Adobe Web site you agree to the terms of our license agreement. Please read it before downloading.
 
DPS applications—which are interactive by nature—present unique challenges to organizations which need to review folios prior to publishing.
 
Review stakeholders with access to a tablet device may use the Adobe Content Viewer to examine folio content prior to publication. Unfortunately, the Adobe Content Viewer does not provide any commenting or annotation features. Worse, individuals without access to a tablet device cannot review the content at all.
 
Portable Document Format (PDF) is a common file format often used to review document content. Since most DPS content is created using Adobe InDesign, it stands to reason that it would be a simple matter to export folio content to PDF from the authoring tool. Unfortunately, while InDesign excels at creating PDF, it isn’t possible to capture most folio interactivity, especially when interface elements are stacked on one another.
 
A workaround to generate good PDF from folios is to capture screenshots from the folio running on the device. The individual screen captures may be combined allowing stakeholders to conveniently use Adobe Reader or Acrobat to review the content and add notes and comments.
 
In this article, I’ll discuss various methods to capture folio screens and how to combine and review folios in Adobe Acrobat.
 

 
Capturing Folio Screens on Tablets and Phones

One method of caputuring a folio screen is to take a screen capture on the device.
 
For this article, I will cover two common devices, the iPad and the Kindle Fire HD.
 
 
Capturing iPad or iPhone Screens
  1. Open the Adobe Content Viewer on the device
  2. Open the folio you wish to review
  3. Simultaneously hold down the Home and Sleep/Wake buttons, then release them together
To view the screen shots on your iOS device:
 
  1. Go to your Home Screen
  2. Tap the Photos app
The photos will be added to the Saved Photos folder (iPad) or Camera Roll (iPhone or iPod Touch).
 
There are two methods you could use to move the screen captures to your Mac or PC
 
  1. Share the pictures to cloud-based storage
  2. Connect the device to your desktop
 
Capturing Kindle Fire HD Screens
  1. Open the Adobe Content Viewer on the Kindle Fire
  2. Open the folio you wish to review
  3. Press the Power and Volume Down button at the same time and hold for one second
 
Take care not to press the Volume Down button first or you may inadvertently capture the volume bar in the screen capture.
To view the screen shots on your Kindle Fire:
 
  1. Go to your home screen and scroll the top menu options to the left
  2. Find and tap Photos
Click the Screenshots folder
 
Figure 1: Screenshot Storage on the Kindle Fire

Figure 1: Screenshot Storage on the Kindle Fire

 

There are two methods you could use to move the screen captures to your Mac or PC
 
  1. Share the pictures to cloud-based storage
  2. Connect the device to your desktop
On Windows, Kindle Fire screenshots appear in this path:
My Computer\Kindle\Internal storage\Pictures\Screenshots
 

 
Capturing Screen Shots using Screen Mirroring on the iPad

Screen capture on devices can be time-consuming and error prone. On the iPad, pressing keys in the wrong sequence will turn off the iPad. In addition, it can be a bit of a bother to transfer screen captures from the device to your Mac or PC.
 
For this reason, I prefer to mirror the iPad screen on my Mac or PC and take screen captures on the computer. To mirror the screen, you will need the Reflector application ($12.99 USD) which uses AirPlay technology to mirror your iPhone 4S, iPad 2 or later to any Mac or PC via WiFi.
 
Note: I am not aware of a way to mirror the Kindle Fire HD screen to a Mac or PC, although it may be possible to mirror other Android devices (see Resources).
With Reflector up and running, the next step is to capture the screen on your Mac or PC.
 
 
Capturing the Reflector Screen on the Mac
First, you will need to install the Reflector application on your Mac. Then, start up Reflector as follows:
 
  1. Start Reflector on your Mac
  2. Double-tap the Home button on your iPad
  3. Scroll left until you see the Airplay Icon
  4. Tap the Airplay Icon and turn on mirroring
Figure 2: Turning on AirPlay Mirroring on the iPad

Figure 2: Turning on AirPlay Mirroring on the iPad

 

With Reflector running and your screen mirrored to your Mac:
 
  1. Open the Adobe Content Viewer (or your own app)
  2. Navigate to the first screen (an article, for example) that you want to capture
  3. Type Command-Shift-4
  4. Tap the spacebar
    A camera icon appears:
reviewing-dps-projects-camera-icon
  1. Click the Reflector window which displays your Folio with the Camera icon
    You should hear a shutter sound.
Figure 3: Taking a screenshot of the Adobe Content Viewer on the Mac

Figure 3: Taking a screenshot of the Adobe Content Viewer on the Mac

 

  1. The screen capture is saved to your desktop as a PDF labeled as follows:
    Screen Shot YEAR-MONTH-DAY-TIME
  2. Repeat for additional folio screens
 
Screen Shot Tools on Windows
Although Windows offers the ability to capture a window using the the Alt-PrtScn shortcut or the Windows Snipping Utility, these tools do not allow you to easily handle a large number of screen captures quickly.
On Windows, I recommend purchasing a screen capture utility such as SnagIt ($49.95 USD). SnagIt offers a robust set of tools for managing screen captures:
 
  • Set file name, save location, and format for screen captures
  • Set your own keyboard shortcut for screen captures
  • Watermark screen captures
  • Automatically name screen captures
  • Create capture profiles
  • Delayed Captures (countdown to capture)
  • Timed Captures (capture screen at specific intervals)
Using a timed capture, you can automatically capture a window every few seconds. This is handy if you have a folio with a lot of interactivty, for example when you want to capture each frame of a slide show. SnagIt is also smart enough to capture the frontmost window which speeds the process.
Note: Although SnagIt is available in a Mac version, it offers only a small number of features compared to its PC sibling.
 
SnagIt is a fairly deep application, so I've included two Snag-It Capture profiles in this article to help you get started:
 
  • DPS Window Capture
Auto DPS Capture (Timed)
 
Figure 4: SnagIt Windows

Figure 4: SnagIt Windows

 

 
Taking Screen Shots using SnagIt
The following presumes you will be using the SnagIt DPS Window Capture preset supplied with this article. Please consult the README that accompanies the download. The DPS Window Capture preset captures the frontmost window, counts down from 4 seconds so you can get ready, and saves JPG files to folder on your desktop.
 
With Reflector running and your screen mirrored to your PC:
 
  1. Open the Adobe Content Viewer (or your own app)
  2. Navigate to the first screen (an article, for example) that you want to capture
  3. Start the SnagIt application and choose the DPS Window Capture profile
  4. Click the red capture button or type CTRL-ALT-R
  5. Repeat for additional folio screens
 
Combining Screen Captures to PDF
Combining multiple PDFs or images into a single, multipage PDF is simple to do using Adobe Acrobat. The following instructions are for Acrobat XI, but the process for previous versions is similar.
 
  1. Launch Adobe Acrobat XI
  2. Choose File> Create> Combine Files into a Single PDF . . .
In the Combine window, click the Add Files button and locate the screen capture PDFs or images you created
 
Figure 5: Combining multiple image files into a single PDF in Acrobat

Figure 5: Combining multiple image files into a single PDF in Acrobat

 

  1. In the Combine window, you may reorder or delete the screen captures. Click the Combine Files button when complete and save to a location of your choice.
Figure 6: Ordering and selecting the screen capture images for combining

Figure 6: Ordering and selecting the screen capture images for combining

 

 
Reviewing PDF
Adobe Reader XI and Adobe Acrobat XI provide over twenty commenting tools that allow stakeholders to mark-up and annotate content.
 
You may need to alert reviewers that the combined screen captures do not have selectable text, so Acrobat’s highlight text tools will not fuction. However, there are many other ways to comment on image-based PDFs including sticky notes, the pencil tool or callouts:
 
Figure 7: Using Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat to review and markup the PDF of your DPS project

Figure 7: Using Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat to review and markup the PDF of your DPS project

 

Although beyond the scope of this article, you may wish to look into Acrobat’s Shared Review feature. Shared Review allows multiple people, in real time, to add notes and comments on a PDF. This approach allows reviewers to respond to each other in a highly collaborative manner.
 

 
Resources