Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Split up your PDF files into separate pages - for free!

I just found something that's pretty life changing (that is, if you consider a simple tech life-hack life changing). So of course I'm going to share it with you, my good readers!

Have you ever found yourself wanting to make a separate PDF file of a larger file, but with only a few of the original pages? I found myself in that situation today with a scholarship form. In order to electronically send the reference letter forms to my references, I wanted to separate out the form from the rest of the application. I researched how to go about doing this by starting with a Google search, and found a brilliant solution: use Google Chrome! Here are the steps:

  1. Download the Google Chrome web browser if you haven't already. It's free.
  2. Open a new tab in Google Chrome. 
  3. From a Windows Explorer window (or your desktop), drag & drop your original PDF file into the Google Chrome window. (You have to do this twice for some reason. The first time you drag & drop it, nothing will happen. Do it again, and it'll open up the PDF file in Chrome.)
  4. Do this twice. The first time you do it, nothing will happen. That doesn't mean it didn't work. Just do it again.
    1. If for some reason this doesn't work on the second try, check your settings to be sure Chrome's PDF viewer is enabled. To do this, type “chrome://plugins” in the address bar without the quotes. Ensure that it's enabled, clicking “enable” if not.
  5. Now, you have the PDF file open in your Google Chrome browser. 
  6. Next, you'll go to Print the file. But don't actually print it. Just open the Print dialogue box.
  7. Now, in the Print dialogue box, click on the "Change" button to change your printer type. Select "Save as PDF". 
  8. Then, in the "Pages" section of the Print dialogue, only select the pages you wish to include in your new file.
  9. Finally, click "Print" and a box will pop up asking you to save your new PDF file. Type the new name, save it, and you're finished!
Thanks to WikiHow for the tip!

Sunday, February 2, 2014 - so you can finally get a meeting scheduled!

So you have this really busy group of people who you imagine can't all coordinate their schedules for that one meeting, or even a series of meetings, that you MUST get scheduled. Like a dissertation committee. Enter:! It's the easiest meeting scheduler I've seen, and it works across platforms and in any web browser (for that one person who doesn't know how to sync her calendar and e-mail). You can use it for free, and if you want to pay to upgrade you can sync it with your Google account. It's super easy to set up a meeting request. Plus if you have multiple possible days but want to use the same time slots in each day, there is a simple copy and paste feature. Another feature I love is the option to let people choose not just yes/no to each proposed time slot, but also "IfNeedBe" for those slots that people could be flexible around if it was absolutely necessary.

Whether you're a busy doc student like me, or just someone who is tired of the seeming endless e-mail chain required to get a group of people together, try out!