I need to design (on a mac) several PDFs with dynamic, fillable forms that can be used on both mac and PC. The focus is on design. What program can I achieve this with?
This could be done both in InDesign CS6 (the latest version), which now has the capability for creating forms, or in Acrobat Pro. InDesign would have the easiest interface to use, but, if you don't know it already, it would require you to learn to use a reasonably complex and powerful application to do a good job.
If you're not an InDesign user, I'd suggest creating a form in Microsoft Word and using the Forms Wizard (the name varies depending on your version of Acrobat) to convert as much as you can into an interactive form. You'll need to clean it up and edit it further in Acrobat.
You can find tutorials if you do a Google search on "Acrobat form wizard"
I often use InDesign to create the source document that I then export to PDF. I then add the interactive form fields in Acrobat. The latest version of InDesign allows you to create the fields in InDesign. You can further refine them in Acrobat if needed.
Thank you for the information. Are you able to purchase LiveCycle on its own, or does it only come within a suite? Also, when using LiveCylce, can forms be designed in InDesign first and then adjusted in LiveCycle to keep good, consistent design, in terms of fonts, letter spacing, etc.?
Let me know.
LiveCycle is a PC Only application, but it comes with the purchase of Acrobat Professional on PC.
You can create a form within LiveCycle from an existing PDF created from another application, but it will not be a fully dynamic PDF. To create a fully dynamic PDF which allows fields and sections to resize, and adjust the rest of the content, the form must be created completely within LiveCycle. This is why I asked what exactly you mean by 'Dynamic' - depending on what your needs are (what you mean by 'dynamic'), you may be able to create the form in InDesign, or your needs may require it to be done within LiveCycle.
Okay. By "dynamic" I mean that one or more fields within a form may need to expand, pushing content to another page. The problem really is upholding the design of the forms. I am not familiar enough with LiveCycle to know if you can embed fonts, etc. when designing a form.
Yes, you will need to use LiveCycle to achieve that, and from what I understand, you cannot start with a PDF created from InDesign, you would have to create the form completely within LiveCycle.
I am not too familiar with LiveCycle either, haven't had the chance to really get to use it much other than a brief tryout. I just checked, and there is an 'Embed Fonts' option when saving the file, so I'm assuming this would work, assuming you have the fonts that you need available on the PC.
BTW, there is a LiveCycle specific forum that you can ask questions