CHI2003 - New Horizons

Producing & Testing PDFs

How to Create a PDF File

  • Option 1: Talk to Your System Manager

    The easiest, fastest and most reliable way to create a PDF file is to use tools which are installed and regularly used at your local site (ask your local system manager if you have not used it before). These may be commercial software tools (e.g. from Adobe), or one of the shareware tools described under Option 3.

    If you do not already have access to a conversion tool, you have two options: using the Adobe free online service to convert your file, or obtaining software that converts Postscript (PS) into PDF.

  • Option 2: Use the Adobe Free Service

    This service converts your file (e.g. an MS WORD .DOC file) directly into PDF.

    This is the simplest way, via a free service at the Adobe Website which allows you to convert a small number of files for free. This is the simplest procedure, BUT

    • You will have to register with Adobe.
    • You get 5 conversions free. After that, you have to register for the service and pay a monthly fee.
    • There may be a risk that the free service gets overloaded and will not deliver (i.e. if several hundred CHI submitters try to convert their files at the same time).

    How to Convert Your File

    • Step 2.1 - Go to the Adobe Website
    • Step 2.2 - Register for the free trial; you will receive email instructions for how to access the service.
    • Step 2.3 - Select "Convert a file"
    • Step 2.4 - Enter the name of the file you want to convert, and under "Optimization Settings", chose "print", and the security options and delivery method of your choice.
    • Step 2.5 - (for anonymous submissions) Once you have received the PDF file by email, check that it prints and is anonymous. (See your submission category for information on whether your submission must be anonymous.)

      You will need a tool that can display pdf to do so. If you don't have one, you can download a free Acrobat Reader.

      • Open your PDF file
      • From the "File" menu, Select "Print"
      • Check that the printout is as you would like it to be considered by the reviewers
      • (for anonymous submissions) Check that the submission is anonymous
      • Submit your paper

  • Option 3: Converting Without External Service

    This path is more complicated, but means you do not have to rely on an external service. Since it is complicated, we recommend that you download the software and try the conversion well in advance of the submission date.

    How to Convert Your File

    1. You have to produce a Postscript (.ps or .prn) file first. (If you are using LaTeX or another tool that outputs ps, go to 2 below)

      If you use Word,

      • select the "Print" option
      • check the "print to file" box
      • make sure the printer selected is a Postscript printer (check with your system manager if you are not sure)
      • name the file ("")

    2. Download, install and use OPTION A or B
      • OPTION A: Ghostview - this is a free product
        1. Go to
        2. Download "GSView 4.0" and "AFPL Ghostscript 7.00" and the user manual, making sure you select the right version for the machine/operating system you are using.
        3. Read the user manual (Readme.htm) for installation and use of the program.
      • OPTION B: Pstill - you need to buy a license to use this, but you can try a free download version.
        1. Go to
        2. Download the appropriate version for your operating system.
        3. Read the user manual for installation and use of the product.

    3. (for anonymous submissions) Once you have obtained your pdf file, check that it prints and is a properly anonymous file (go to Step 2.5)