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Top 10 MIS features to consider

Jun 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By Gerald Walsh

10. Overall software intelligence The MIS solution should support your sales, service, planning, management and production teams with software intelligence designed to eliminate steps, improve accuracy, reduce waste and speed production. This should include, for example, smart estimating, planning, tracking, scheduling and analysis tools. 9. Industry experience and flexibility Your MIS provider should

Selecting an MIS

Jun 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By Philip K. Ruggles

A printing company's management should visualize an ideal computer management solution to meet its current real needs and anticipated future needs. Here are the eight suggested needs categories for a typical printing company.

Soft sell

May 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By American Printer staff

Don't look now, but there's a quiet monitor-based proofing revolution afoot, says prepress veteran Larry Warter.

Online options for the printing industry

Mar 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By Katherine O'Brien

Web-to-print or as it is frequently abbreviated, can encompass everything from online ordering to print production. Printing Industries of America's Web-to-Print Primer identifies four basic business models: print procurement (e-commerce storefronts or broker sites); marketing/brand management (private branded sites for corporate/franchise collateral ordering as well as sites for managing marketing

Cross-media marketers

Mar 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By Michael Ninness

To successfully execute cross-media campaigns, Montage Graphics has built a unified, intuitive design and print production environment that enables designers to explore more creative possibilities and experience new levels of productivity.

Imposition choices

Feb 1, 2009 12:00 AM,

Where does imposition software appear in your workflow? Is it integrated with a Web-enabled storefront? A digital press? Did it come with your CTP solution, or maybe as part of a shop-to-top computer integrated manufacturing system? Whether you use a bundled solution, a standalone program or some combination of full-featured software and plug-ins, you have many choices when it comes to print file

Multichannel VP

Jan 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By Jill Roth

Four years ago, One2Won, a Palmer Network company (Chicago) was looking for a Web-to-print and creative asset library system for a large client. They chose Fuse from L2, Inc. (San Jose, CA) for its versatility. L2 Fuse is a Web-based software and service platform that helps clients create personalized direct mail, e-mail and personalized URLs (PURLs). One2Won has two Palmer Network sister companies:

Dynamic optimization

Jan 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By American Printer staff

We recently spoke with Elie Khoury, a color management pioneer as well as the founder and president of Alwan Color Expertise (Lyon, France). See www.alwancolor.com. Can you give us an overview of Alwan's products? CMYK Optimizer was originally created to help users standardize and optimize CMYK separations. Today, it is as much a quality assurance as a color management tool. It performs a comprehensive

Automation pays

Jan 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By Jill Roth

Associates Graphic Services (AGS) (Wilmington, DE) is celebrating its 35th anniversary with a bang. Founded in 1969 as a type house, AGS has evolved into a highly automated offset and digital operation, as evidenced by its 2008 CIPPI Award. The printer won first place honors for the biggest improvement in efficiency and customer responsiveness as a result of process automation. I'm a big proponent

Better balance

Jan 1, 2009 12:00 AM, By American Printer staff

Until recently, managing and maintaining gray balance had prepress operators at Paragon Press (Salt Lake City, UT), gnashing their teeth. When the operators ran a neutral three-color gray next to black-only boxes on a press, they had a warm tint in the midtones, a green tint in the 3/4 tones, and pink highlights. They wanted a gray balance throughout the range to improve quality and consistency. At

Measuring up

Dec 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By AP staff

Spectrophotometers play a key role in quality assessment. Printers use them to check their production processes and customers use them to evaluate print jobs. Often, the spectrophotometer reading determines a job's acceptability. But when VIGC, the Flemish Innovation Center for Graphic Communications in Turnhout, Belgium, did a study on device accuracy, it found deviations up to a delta E of nearly

Solving prepress problems

Nov 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Katherine O'Brien

Several years ago, Joe Cannon founded B4Print.com, an independent forum for prepress people. We asked Cannon, a prepress operator at The Breese Journal & Publishing Co. (Breese, IL) to share some of his favorite troubleshooting sites. His suggestions include www.adobe.com; www.quark.com; www.russellviers.com (Always good stuff here, says Cannon); and www.printplanet.com. Cannon invited participants

Expert advice

Nov 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Katherine O'Brien

Russell Viers is an Adobe Certified instructor who also teaches QuarkXPress. See www.russellviers.com. Cari Jansen is a Senior Solutions Consultant for Typefi Systems, as well as an Adobe Certified Instructor (ACI), and Adobe Ambassador Program member and Founder & Chapter Representative of the Perth InDesign User Group. See http://carijansen.com. Got an Illy issue? Mordy Golding is the former product

CIP4 and GASC to host JDF demo at Graph Expo

Oct 7, 2008 12:00 AM,

The International Cooperation for the Integration of the Processes in Prepress, Press and Postpress (CIP4) organization and Graphic Arts Show Corporation (GASC) have announced plans for the “JDF Works Print Shop Live!” program at Graph Expo 2008

EFI stays connected

Oct 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Patrick Henry

It was a conference that almost didn't take place, but this year's edition of EFI Connect beat the odds and paid off handsomely. By drawing, despite soaring airfares, more than 500 attendees to the Wynn Las Vegas resort for a four-day (July 29-August 1) symposium on all things EFI, the annual event retained its distinction as the industry's largest user group meeting. It also furnished the setting

Quality color

Aug 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By AP staff

The prepress department at Sandy Alexander (Clifton, NJ) is where the art and science of high-quality color printing meet. The company's team of skilled professionals combines applies leading-edge technology to match and manage color in both web and sheetfed printing. Sandy Alexander's plants use color measurement, management, profiling and calibration products from GretagMacbeth/X-Rite, Monaco Color

Designing printable files

Jul 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Alex Hamilton

Printing is a rare manufacturing process in which the raw materials are specified and supplied by creative people. Whereas art directors and graphic designers were once insulated from the vagaries of printing by type houses and color trade shops, the advent of the Macintosh and PostScript (and now PDF) put them in control of the production process. For printers, the impact has been varied. Those with

A new era for PDF-based workflows

May 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Martin Spaar

Conventional prepress workflow solutions control processes from data entry through plate exposure. There are dozens of PDF workflow solutions, including Agfa's :ApogeeX, Heidelberg's Prinect, Kodak's Prinergy, Fujifilm's XMF, and Screen's Trueflow. And as we go to press, Xant has announced OpenRip Symphony 3.0 for small and midsize users. Mighty engine Things are now moving in this market thanks to

Innovative workflows

May 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By AP staff

Ten years ago, with backing from his father-in-law, Bobby Smith, Steve Hagan launched ZebraGraphics (Paducah, KY). I had no choice but to succeed, he says. Failure was not an option. After graduating from the Art Institute of Atlanta, a slow job market led Hagan to a printing career, first with Hartley Press (Jacksonville, FL) and then with Franklins, a quick printer in Atlanta. Today, ZebraGraphics

Big screens, packaging workflows & more

May 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By AP staff

At Drupa, Heidelberg (Kennesaw, GA) will unveil a new version of its Prinect Axis Control spectrophotometric color measuring system, fully integrated into the new Prinect Press Center control station. At 7.87 in./second, it's twice as fast as its predecessor. During setup, the system automatically identifies the type of quality control strip and its position on the sheet. As of Drupa 2008, all SM