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Binding a PDF to Book Control

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Paul
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Paul asked on 26 Nov 2009, 12:04 PM
Is there a very simple way in which an Adobe PDF can be bound to the Book Control?

This would seem one of the most benefical functions that the Book control could be used for.

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Kiril Stanoev
Telerik team
answered on 26 Nov 2009, 01:09 PM
Hello Paul,

Currently the Silverlight plugin does not support PDF files. One trick is to overlay the Silverlight plugin with an html placeholder and display the PDF there. However, in this scenario you cannot use any existing Silverlight book controls. Let me know if you have additional questions.

Kind regards,
Kiril Stanoev
the Telerik team

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Tyrin-J
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answered on 16 Dec 2009, 03:50 PM
I believe that when we do things it should be of great benefit, that has practical usability; solving some problems. Sometimes I think this days things are created not because it solves a problem but because it can be done. I see a lot of this a lot today with Microsoft products. Sometimes you can barely call them products. They do a  lot of things and at the same time do nothing.

So far I have been reading about the Book control, I do not see how I can use that control in any real application. When I first read about it I thought wow this is great. In fact I had been thinking about building a control that would allow users with publishing rights to publish magazines, articles corporate handbook. This control would provide decent and nice navigations for end users to move around pages. So reading about the book control was really exciting. However, this was short-lived when I found out that there was no way I could feed an existing document e.g. Word, Excel, PDF e.t.c. into the control without copying and pasting content from those sources into Visual Studio or Expression Blend and decorating them with XAML codes. This is hardly efficient and how can you ask end users to carry that out. I don't want to be publishing content like this for my clients and billing them for it. One approach would be to build a custom applet that generates XAML codes from content but again I dont think developers should be worrying about things like this.

Bottom line is that users should be able to load existing formatted documents. Or is there something we are missing Kiril. 
 
All the same, your team do have fantastic ideas and great products. Some are just hard to grasp. Let me also use this opportuity to say that your documentation is not helping us. And your sample codes are hard to follow because the are complex examples. Remember that Silverlight is relatively new and lots of people as still trying to get a hang of it. Your examples are still much needed but they should be accompanied by numerous How tos.


Tyrin-J
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Valentin.Stoychev
Telerik team
answered on 16 Dec 2009, 04:05 PM
Hello Tyrin,

Thank you for your feedback. We know that PDF, Docx are the mostly used formats these days.

Unfortunately the Silverlight runtime do not contain anything to help us render them. As you mentioned there should be a separate tool to convert those formats to XAML. Writing such tool is not impossible but surely hard and with data loss. Such tool however is not part from the Book control. As it is a SL control it should rely on XAML to render its content.

What we are doing right now is to enable easier integration with images so you can easily create scenarios like photo albums, online magazines, etc ...

Hopefully as the platform emerge there will be tools that will enables us render richer formats, like the ones you mentioned.

As for the help articles - I can assure you that we are working very hard on this. The first results are already online. The controls that receive a much needed help refreshments are the Grid, TreeView and Chart. We are now working on better help for RibbonBar and ComboBox. If you have any feedback on the help articles for the Grid, Tree or Chart - please let us know.

We are also working on a courseware for Silverlight that is ~1000 pages long, like the one we have for our Ajax controls - http://www.telerik.com/support/documentation-and-tutorials/step-by-step-tutorial-for-ajax.aspx

Kind regards,
Valentin.Stoychev
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Ben Hayat
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answered on 16 Dec 2009, 04:43 PM
Hi Tyrin;

I'm just another developer on this forum but I'll share my two cents with you. This control was recently added to the family of controls. My experience with Telerik has been that they introduce a control first and then based on feedback they improve on it. For example if you look at the first version of GridView and what it is now, you will be shocked to see how much and how fast was improved. Let's provide the team with feedback and features that are needed in real life (like you pointed out about import features) and I'm sure Telerik is not interested to advertise that they XX number of controls (that you may find useless), but is more interested to provide their customers that they can use in real life. So keep them coming and don't give up on your attempt to build your dream app. I'm in close contact with the team, and I confess, this company has the most "eager to listen" team that I've ever seen.
I just wanted to summarize that this control is still in CTP and I'm sure it will turn into a a real head turner soon! Hope this helps.
..Ben
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Valentin.Stoychev
Telerik team
answered on 16 Dec 2009, 05:13 PM
Hi ..Ben,

 Thanks for the comments. We are really looking forward enabling these formats, but this is not short-term planning, so for the moment we just listen for a feedbac.

I just want to mention that the Book is not a CTP. It is an oficially released control - v1.


All the best,
Valentin.Stoychev
the Telerik team

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Tyrin-J
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answered on 16 Dec 2009, 05:30 PM
If I didn't mention it before, the RadBook control has excellent potential. In fact there are lots of ideas I already have for it and would want to implement including SharePoint (MOSS 2007 and SharePoint 2010). And my clients will love me forever for it. Good thing again is that SharePoint 2010 supports Silverlight out of the box.

It would be great to see some if not all of these feedback implemented as soon as you can. I am sure so many other developers can't wait.

Great job the telerik team!



Tyrin-J
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Ben Hayat
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answered on 16 Dec 2009, 05:34 PM
Thanks Valio for the correction, the reason I said CTP, because at the website http://www.telerik.com/products/silverlight/book.aspx it says "The control is currently in CTP".
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Dan Arnold
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answered on 07 May 2010, 09:29 PM
AmyUni has a Silvelight Book control for PDF's. The problem is that their licensing is very expensive. $2500 for 1 dev seat 1 app seat and maintenance for 1 yr.

Check it out here.
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Tyrin-J
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answered on 07 May 2010, 11:06 PM
Well, its doable. Its now left to Telerik to lead the market in this very promising area.
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Kiril Stanoev
Telerik team
answered on 12 May 2010, 04:04 PM
Hi All,

Since Silverlight does not understand the PDF format, currently, one possible solution is to convert the PDF to a format that Silverlight actually understands i.e. XAML. Right now we do not have a tool that converts PDF to XAML but we have plans to work on such tool. I cannot bind to a specific release date so stay tuned for updates.

Sincerely yours,
Kiril Stanoev
the Telerik team

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Ben Hayat
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answered on 12 May 2010, 04:16 PM
Thanks for the update Kiril;

As the new RichText control progressing, I think that engine can do the conversion and then the book can use the RichText control as it's content. I can see a lot great stuff will be coming out that new RT engine that can improve other Telerik controls.

Thanks!
..Ben
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Wagner Sena
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answered on 04 Jun 2010, 07:24 PM
Oh, this is exactly what I was needing.

I work with ECM software for banks and financial institutions, and they are the kind of people that have lots of already existing documents in all formats you can imagine, but mostly .doc, .html and .pdf, so it would be amazing to let them see all of their documents in a single tool as the RadBook.

Since SilverLight is not yet supporting PDF loading/convertion, nor docx, et cetera, would it be a way out (a work around) loading the content of these files, and then setting the "pure"-text to the RadBook? Is this possible and workable? I really need and want to display the content of their files in a new way (i.e. through RadBook).

Let me know if this is a way out.

Thanks guys.
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Valentin.Stoychev
Telerik team
answered on 07 Jun 2010, 07:47 AM
Hi Wagner Sena,

it is still not possible. We have this in our plans to create different document converters, but they will be available with our Q3 release ( e.g. - November this year).

For the moment you can only use the RadRichTextBox to convert Docx files and to display them, ony in the rich text box.

Kind regards,
Valentin.Stoychev
the Telerik team

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James Shelton Agar
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answered on 14 Jul 2010, 02:06 AM
some how i saw the radbook and pdf on youtube
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlCUIfAPoHg
and commented This video shows how you can display your PDF documents in Telerik's RadBook ...
any progress on that?
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Kiril Stanoev
Telerik team
answered on 16 Jul 2010, 12:41 PM
Hi James,

We have not published an article on the subject because to display pdf in RadBook we have to convert the pdf document to an array of images. The tools we use to convert the pdf to images do not work all the time. Therefore, we decided it would be better not to show approach since we had no control on. For example, we had to use GhostScript to convert the pdf to a set of images, and GhostScript did not work all the time. It also had dependency on the operating system and so on. Additionally, PDF# which we used to retrieve the number of pages in a PDF document did not open all the pdfs. Randomly it would just not open certain document.
However, you can find attached a work in progress sample project and an article on the topic. Use them for reference and guidance on how the whole scenario might work. I cannot guarantee that it will work 100% so please do not use this approach in production code.

Best wishes,
Kiril Stanoev
the Telerik team
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Jurjen Ladenius
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answered on 02 Aug 2010, 11:28 AM
Good to hear that Telerik is working on an own implementation rather that using ghostscript.
I hope that it will also work for RadBook for WPF. I was looking for it in PITS, but I can't find it... 

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Kiril Stanoev
Telerik team
answered on 05 Aug 2010, 07:53 AM
Hello Jurjen,

We are closely  working with the RichTextBox team to allow integration between RadBook and RadRichTextBox.
The RichTextBox team have plans by the end of this quarter Q3 2010 to have WPF version of the RichTextBox. Therefore, by the end of Q3 2010 you will be able to load DOCX files in RichTextBox, integrate the RichTextBox with Book, search the text etc.
As for PDF, the short term plans are to have only export.

Also, you can take a look at this thread which elaborates more on the integration between RichTextBox and Book.

Sincerely yours,
Kiril Stanoev
the Telerik team
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Rob
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answered on 07 Mar 2011, 03:38 PM
Is there any progress on being able to pick up and display a PDF file like you can a Word document?
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Ben Hayat
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answered on 07 Mar 2011, 04:15 PM
Ah, I need PDF support so bad... :-)
..Ben
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James Shelton Agar
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answered on 08 Mar 2011, 12:42 AM
don't think there's any progress.. however, I get telerik report work with it pretty ok, so I am relevantly happy with it
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Dean
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answered on 13 Mar 2011, 03:35 PM
Tool at http://www.netpdftools.com allows to render PDFs to Canvas or convert to images, so it allows you to place PDF into RadBook easily
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Dharmesh Trivedi
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answered on 05 Apr 2011, 08:27 PM
Love to see this functionality. Also wanted to insert image as well  (Please include this as well)
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Tina Stancheva
Telerik team
answered on 11 Apr 2011, 09:42 AM
Hi guys,

Unfortunately there still aren't new ways to display PDF in the RadBook. However, you can place the RadRichTextBox control inside the RadBook pages thus taking advantage of the RichTextBox's import/export functionality. Currently the control only supports PDF export, however implementing PDF import is part of our to-do list but unfortunately we cannot schedule it for the moment.

Here you can examine how to integrate both controls.

All the best,
Tina Stancheva
the Telerik team
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Paul
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Kiril Stanoev
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Tyrin-J
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Valentin.Stoychev
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Ben Hayat
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Dan Arnold
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Wagner Sena
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James Shelton Agar
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Jurjen Ladenius
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Rob
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Dean
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Dharmesh Trivedi
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Tina Stancheva
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