Stitching together custom dynamic stamp content

Numerous questions come up about dynamic stamps on AcrobatUsers.com – everything from what they are to how to build your own. Unfortunately there is precious little information on the subject, and what there is needs stitching together. So, I’ll take a moment to pull the pieces together by first discussing what a dynamic stamp is, how to create your own or modify an existing one, then finally how to prompt the user for information to display inside a custom dynamic stamp.

A dynamic stamp is simply any image or graphic that displays your name, date, and time on the stamp. It’s considered dynamic because the exact date and time that you apply the stamp is displayed every time you use it. Dynamic stamps obtain information from your system for the time and date, and from the Identity panel of the Preferences dialog box for your name. You need Acrobat to create a dynamic stamp but once it has been created it can be used in either Acrobat or Adobe Reader (version XI only). Dynamic stamps are located in the Comment pane under the Annotations panel in either Acrobat or Adobe Reader XI.

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A new dynamic stamp is created by placing a form field that contains some JavaScript on top of an image or graphic. You won’t find this information in the Acrobat Help, but this infographic on Creating a custom dynamic stamp can guide you through the process.

Now if all you need to do is modify one of the existing custom dynamic stamps in the figure above, you should check out Karl Heinz Kremer’s tutorial on Modify Dynamic PDF Stamps in Acrobat.

After creating a custom dynamic stamp, I’m frequently asked about the ability to include additional information within the stamp. Thom Parker, of WindJack Solutions, has an excellent tutorial on this called Dynamic stamp secrets that explains how to create JavaScript dialogs that will prompt the end user for additional information when applying a dynamic stamp.

Then, if you still find yourself searching for answers on how to customize your dynamic stamp, be sure to check out Thom Parker’s book on All About PDF Stamps in Acrobat and Paperless Workflows. It covers everything including using checkboxes and custom dialogs on dynamic stamps. So, now hopefully you have enough reference material to guide you through the process of creating, using, and customizing your dynamic stamps.

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