Don’t get me wrong, the PDF format is perfect for sharing information in a well-presented manner over the Internet. The only annoying thing about the Adobe file format is that if you want to extract text or images from a PDF to be republished online, added to a word processing document, inserted into a PowerPoint presentation and such, it can be hard to know where to start. Don’t worry though, because there are a few simple ways you can extract elements in a flash.
If you have the full version of Acrobat Reader then you’re in luck, because the application provides probably the most effective way of pillaging a PDF. All you need to do is use the Select Text or Select Graphic option from the basic Acrobat toolbar (they’re both housed within the same button). If you’re selecting text, you just need to highlight it and choose Copy before pasting it into Word. If it’s images you’re after, you can right-click on it and choose Save As.
If you’re only using the free version of Acrobat then you won’t be able to do the above. Instead, you’ll probably be best off installing a third party app to do the job for you. Thankfully, there are a couple of good ones that you can pick up for free. PDF Image Extraction Wizard offers a dead simple way of sucking out bitmaps from a PDF and saving them as a single image file on your PC.
To export text from a PDF while preserving its layout and properties, try Free PDF to Word Doc Converter. It’s free and really simple. You just need to select the source PDF file and target directory and specify whether you want to convert the whole file or just a certain page range. Then you’ll be able to open and edit your document in Word just like any other DOC file.