This question might be better posted in the Acrobat SDK forum: http://forums.adobe.com/community/acrobat/acrobat_sdk?view=discussions
But they will tell you to look at the PDF Reference/Spec: http://www.adobe.com/devnet/pdf/pdf_reference.html
It can be helpful to export annotations to FDF and inspect the contents of the file. You can more easily see what makes up an annotation.
Thanks, that is a good place to start.
You don't happen to know of way to get at the annotations in their native format so they can be submitted to a server and re-applied to a PDF at the server, do you? Someone else had a similar question in 2008 but was unanswered: http://forums.adobe.com/thread/286854
I've been playing with the idea of trying to use XFDF, but the method exportAsXFDFStr doesn't support annotations and the exportAsXFDF method requires escalated privileges.
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As for merging an FDF with a PDF on a server, Adobe's PDF library should be able to help and I know of at least one non-Adobe library that's capable of this, and you may find something in Adobe's LiveCycle offerings, or figure out how do it yourself.
Thanks for pointing to the submitForm method! I forgot that XFDF was a supported format & annotations can be included there.