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Adobe's PDF hitches a ride with Linux

The popular format for viewing documents will be adapted for the open-source operating system--debuting in navigation systems for cars.

Adobe Systems announced plans Thursday to adapt its widespread Portable Document Format for use with Linux-powered consumer electronics. Adobe will produce a version of its Adobe Reader software for devices running an embedded version of the open-source operating system. The first device to use the applications with be in-car navigation systems produced by Sony. There, the format would be useful for displaying downloadable maps, tourist guides and other content.

Adobe is in the midst of an effort to expand PDF, already widely used for electronic distribution of documents, into a broad foundation for exchanging corporate data. The Reader application for viewing PDF files already is available for numerous operating systems, including Palm, Pocket PC and Symbian for mobile devices.