Starting with IPEX 2002, this blog covers events relevant for UK print, including Seybold and DRUPA. See also website at

Friday, October 24, 2008

Scope for websites. The blogs started to take over around or after 2002 when they got so much easier to update. The websites became stuck as claims of some possibility or other. Forget the homepage said Jeff Jarvis at some point but I kept updating it to hang on to credibility. There should have been a database of stories, not just a constant rewrite. Still, they all exist somewhere so an archive should be possible. Stuff comes around. Next month Personal Computer World is promising a guide to databases.

The Total Print event has confirmed in my mind that print is now part of a digital scene. I tried to make litho interesting as news but this only worked to an extent. The editors of OhmyNews have switched the headlines on my story so that the e-book aspect is the priority. Seems reasonable for their audience.

So let us assume that WWWatford has arrived. It was intended as a destination for the UK print industry, like Cairo for Windows. The Heidelberg presentation was as good as this could get. Prinect and computer to plate. Litho could not be much more available. Web-to-print was all over the show. What the speed is for the UK industry to implement this sort of thing, that is another question. There may be more consolidation before there is much investment. Recent Printweek editorials have been frank about the level of investment that would make much sense, for example in capacity for magazines. The WWWatford site will continue to look at UK print with the global context getting easier to link in as attention turns to IPEX. Assume next year's Total Print much the same as this. The LCC conference was mostly about games and the Web so there is a discussion possible about how this fits with the display area.

The Acrobat Services sites are complicated by the Adobe introduction to Acrobat of all things Flash. It is no longer just about PDF. On balance I think most people are still mostly interested in PDF when they think about Acrobat but this is not the marketing view from Adobe. They seem to be giving up on Adobe Classic as if it is getting too easy for others to supply Postscript clones or PDF creation. Adobe Max is expected to be much more future proof. I think the UK is not really ready for much of this, partly because of bandwidth. So I intend to keep the UK site pretty much to Adobe Classic in themes, - flat pages, hard copy, documents as organisations are used to them. Also the Digital Editions Reader and ePUB. The PDFXML approach will be included but there is almost no support from Adobe in promoting this. At least with ePUB there is a group of people with an interest in reaching a wider audience.

The dotcom site is best thought of "in a cloud". That is where Adobe seem to be heading. It already includes some news about Google. Docs can save PDF and I also like Scribd. Their design makes good use of Flash but they seem to be interested in text as well. there may even be mention of Microsoft. The cloud beckons.

Remaining aspects of Flash will turn up as part of animX, a site about digital animation. I am interested in such content, just slow to believe it is a priority for people who are used to PDF.

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