On several projects, I’ve run into problems creating PDF files – it’s never quite as easy as it could be. I’ve worked with PDF generation since Apache FOP and XSL-FO were the state of the art, and moved on since to wkhtmltopdf and PhantomJS. Deploying those binaries in a cloud situation can be tricky, and from a mobile app, impossible.

I’ve created my first API, RobotBridge PDF Conversion, to simplify the process of PDF creation. There are several other APIs and web services that create PDF files on demand, but the pricing for many of them is quite high, or others require a proprietary markup language that ties you into that solution.

Instead, I’m supporting standard HTML/CSS for PDF conversion. Nothing proprietary, and no lockin. Instead, for $0.01 per PDF, you can simply sign up for my API through Mashape, and have PDFs running in no time. I’ve started with the absolute simplest API possible for a PDF conversion service, but I plan to support other scenarios in the future – if you have ideas about what you’d like to see in a PDF conversion API, email me at jlinwood at gmail.com.

I’m in the process of writing more documentation, and some getting started guides for various platforms, but you can currently use the API quite easily using Mashape’s Unirest libraries for different languages.

Check out more on the RobotBridge home page.