100 Words or Less: How does a management information system (MIS) help printers manage their time? 

Dec 01, 2009

“If you want to get a printer furious, ask how much time is spent personally chasing, tracking and hand-holding jobs through the shop. What can they do? Leverage their investments and focus on getting applications and equipment to communicate.

On the go at Graph Expo 

Oct 01, 2008

Graph Expo takes place Oct. 26-29, 2008, in Chicago. It's the biggest U.S. graphic arts event of the year, with upwards of 31,000 people expected to jam the aisles at McCormick Place to see more than 600 exhibitors. Here are some show highlights. More to come! Expanded range of sheefed inks Van Son Holland Ink's (Islandia, NY) VS series of commercial sheetfed printing inks supports faster makereadies

Golden rule 

Sep 01, 2007

Earlier this year, the National Assn. for Printing Leadership (NAPL) (Paramus, NJ) presented 17 graphic communications companies with 2006 Management Plus awards. Management Plus allows graphic communications companies to analyze specific areas of their operations as a tool to judge individual management performance vs. industry standards. After completing a self-analysis, companies may choose to

Winner take all 

Aug 01, 2007

At a special banquet on March 10, 2007, the National Assn. for Printing Leadership (NAPL) (Paramus, NJ) presented 17 graphic communications companies with 2006 Management Plus awards. The event was held during NAPL's Top Management Conference in Santa Barbara, CA. Awards include the William K. Marrinan Hall of Fame award, as well as Gold, Silver and Merit awards. Management Plus allows graphic communications

Aim high 

Aug 01, 2007

At first glance, Spectrum Printing (Orlando, FL) might seem like a typical small or midsized printer. The 10-year-old, 24-employee company occupies a 2,700-sq.-ft. facility. A quick look at Spectrum's equipment list, however, soon reveals Spectrum's cutting-edge capabilities. The prepress department is anchored by a Rampage workflow driving a Fuji Javelin thermal platesetter. The workhorse of the

A dream undeterred 

Jul 01, 2007

For the past decade, U.S. schools have struggled to attract students into into their baccalaureate programs in the graphic arts. It's a challenge that soon will extend beyond the classroom and to the boardroom. We need 60,000 people every year just to replace those in printing [and related industries] who retire or leave the field, RIT's Frank Romano told the Electronic Document Systems Foundation

What are you? 

Jul 01, 2007

Quick vs. small commercial and why it matters A friend of mine does $300,000 in annual sales. I'm not a quick printer! he insists. I'm a real printer. Conversely, I know a commercial printer with $9 million in sales and web equipment who proudly calls his company a quick printer. And then we have industry pundits who categorize any shop with less than 10 employees as a quick printer. Do you remember

Trading up 

Feb 01, 2007

By using trade to cover costs such as plumbing, entertainment, accounting and even office rental, printers can keep more of their “green dollars” in the bank.

Board games 

Dec 01, 2006

Tips for better scheduling.

Peer 2 Peer NETworking 

Dec 01, 2006

Using phpBB, an Open Source bulletin board package, Corey Smith launched www.prepressforum.com in March 2003 to create “a place for people working in the prepress industry to get together and share ideas, help troubleshoot files and talk about technology.”

The Great Divide 

Dec 01, 2006

Despite the slight improvement in 2006 sales, the industry’s challenges are largely unchanged, with overcapacity and murderous price competition remaining in virtually every market sector. More than 20 percent of commercial printers have disappeared over the past five years, but the disappearances aren’t fast enough to be helpful to those who are left.

Learn by example 

Nov 01, 2006

A few of the Variables 2006 panelists shared their stories and offered some helpful advice.

The Stevie Awards 

Nov 01, 2006

Six months ago, I asked AMERICAN PRINTER readers to help prove a point by sharing their variable-data printing (VDP) case histories. Not the same old stories we've heard over and over, but fresh examples that have been overlooked, perhaps because these projects didn't fit the expected profile of variable printing. I wanted to showcase these break the mold stories. Some industry experts reacted with, Variable-data printing (VDP), Web-to-print

Papa's got a Brand new Goss 

Oct 01, 2006

Visitors to Papa John's 36-acre campus in Louisville, KY, soon notice some quirky details. Consider the stop signs on the property. At first glance, they look like, well, stop signs: familiar red octagons. But upon closer inspection, the signs are wordless there's no on those signs, just a picture of a big red tomato. A stroll around the interior of Papa John's 133,000-sq.-ft. corporate headquarters

Paper prices Still climbing 

Oct 01, 2006

Coated and uncoated freesheet paper prices have continued to rise this summer to levels not seen for many years. But the current robust market conditions might not last, according to many observers. Uncoated freesheet prices are currently at a 10-year high in North America, and some producers plan a further round of hikes late in the third quarter. Both Weyerhaeuser Co. and Boise Cascade Inc. reportedly

Online innovation 

Oct 01, 2006

Hillside, IL-based Darwill used its Web tools to link a publisher in New Mexico with a designer in Michigan. The new magazine is printed using stochastic screening, and the quality is so good, some recipients are framing pages. When Doug Evilsizor, founder of SlickRock Publishing (Gallup, NM), sought to launch a high-quality, national publication for an SUV automobile brand, he knew it wouldn't be

Instant proof 

Oct 01, 2006

The final proof for a new brochure is long overdue at an Orange County printing plant, but the client in San Francisco is still toying with a last-minute color change. The account executive at the Los Angeles ad agency is nervous, but the production manager down the hall is surprisingly calm. There is no mad dash to summon the messenger service; only a phone call to Primary Color in Irvine, CA. Because

Foiled again! 

Oct 01, 2006

Whether it's a Valentine's Day card or a video game you bought for your kid, a foil stamped and/or embossed image will catch your eye. The use of foil stamping, embossing and holography represents quality, added value, shelf presence, individuality and security. To promote and acknowledge continued creativity in this area, the Foil Stamping and Embossing Assn. (FSEA) (Topeka, KS) honored the winners

Mailing basics 

Sep 01, 2006

You're a successful small commercial printer. You do it all: design, print, assemble, and send jobs to the mail house. Wait, why are you sending jobs to a mail house? Running mailing equipment is not the difficult part. It's the required postal knowledge that makes a mail house seem like the best choice. But like most printers, you're not comfortable outsourcing the final part of the job to someone

Saying YES to JDF! 

Sep 01, 2006

Joe Novak doesn't have an easy job. He's the director of technology for Williamson Printing Corp. (Dallas), one of the largest printers in the United States. We're a different breed of printer, says Novak. We do so many different things. Williamson, a perennial fixture at the Premier Print Awards, won 121 total awards in the 2005 competition for products and services ranging from direct mail to annual

The Best & Brightest 

Sep 01, 2006

At a special banquet on March 2, 2005, the National Assn. for Printing Leadership (NAPL) (Paramus, NJ) presented 20 graphic communications companies with 2005 Management Plus awards. The event was held during NAPL's Top Management Conference in Orlando, FL. Awards include the William K. Marrinan Hall of Fame award, as well as Gold, Silver and Merit awards. Management Plus allows graphic communications

Decision points 

Sep 01, 2006

Decision Points 2006 was the theme for the 54th Annual Web Offset Management and Technical Conference held at the Gaylord Palms Resort in Orlando, this May. And new event planning decisions made by the Web Offset Assn. (WOA) board of directors and supplier advisory board were evident. As a veteran attendee of WOA conferences, this year's offering combined the traditional sessions with some fresh ideas.

Bindroids: born or made? 

Aug 01, 2006

Is a nerd born or made? I can only go by my own experience as the youngest of seven siblings. I don't think any of us qualified as genuine geeks. Most of my siblings were excellent athletes, and while several were exceptionally smart, we had no chess enthusiasts or Star Trek fans. But even by 1970s standards, we were a nerdy looking bunch. My brother Peter looked a lot like on My Three Sons. And my

Dscoop is Dlovely 

Aug 01, 2006

The Digital Solutions Cooperative (Dscoop), an HP Indigo users group, recently held its inaugural meeting in Ft. Myers, FL. More than 330 attendees were there, including both current and prospective Indigo customers, 70 Hewlett-Packard executives and technical experts, and representatives from 34 HP vendor partners.

Brilliant, but cancelled: a consulting career 

Aug 01, 2006

Bravo, the cable channel, has been airing a series of television shows that have been cancelled or were pilots that never ran. These shows have, for the most part, received critical acclaim, yet for one reason or another, network executives have seen fit to cancel them. It's much like my career as a consultant. I've written about my stint as an advisor to publishers in the mid-1980s. Though I made