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

Monday, October 18, 2010

Print is not a featured feature of Acrobat X

So far I have had a quick look at Acrobat X information. It strikes me that there is no significant mention of print on this release. Strange, as the variable data capability of the Adobe PDF Print Engine is presumably supported. The interface has been redesigned again, possibly making it harder to find the JDF options in the print menu. Just a guess, i will come back to this when I have an actual copy. The reality is, in my honest opinion, that many users of Acrobat still relate to hard copy some of the time. Probably many more than are wanting to wrap existing PDF in a Flash presentation.

So a future task for this blog will be to find the print features and try to promote them. It may be that other software has more focus on this so there will be a comparison.

The best review I can find so for is from Tim Anderson. He has previously attended an Amsterdam meeting for Adobe partners and has also written on how Apple support is limited for forms features of PDF. The "Apple problem" for PDF is similar to the problem with Flash and could get worse if more PDF files include Flash content.  There is a sense that this release is intended to work well with Microsoft products. This could have been a topic during the recent meeting of Steve Ballmer and Shantanu Narayan. It is claimed that moving between Word, Excel and PDF will be even easier.

There is mention of improved collaboration from the Reader. So far I don't know how this is enabled or how widely it will be promoted. One reason the Reader is such a large file is that it has some functions of the full product but they are usually turned off. Many people have found other options for collaborating through documents. Adobe has continued to sell Acrobat to corporates but lost some attention from a wider audience.

Some videos from Acrobat TV

Lori DeFurio on SendNow, a news service from Not yet launched, more detail in November.

Brad Arkin on Security. More here about working closely with Microsoft. Some people claim that security concerns are a reason to move to open source.

Ali Hanyaloglu interviews Rick Treitman, Director of Product Management Acrobat Solutions Services.
The cloud is the future but there is more detail to follow.

Kevin Wedman and Kyle Froling of Bureau Veritas, a global leader in delivering quality, health, environment, and safety (QHSE) solutions, visit with Lori DeFurio of Adobe to discuss how enhancements in Acrobat X will further improve collaboration across their project teams, reduce administration costs, and bring greater control to complex engineering and construction workflows.

Joel Geraci talks with Tim Wandell of Universal Mind about his views on Acrobat X. It turns out that code options assume you already know Flash.

I will try to keep an open mind about the Flash future. But my main conclusion at the moment is that PDF support is coming from various sources and PDF may not be the main Adobe focus.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Graph Expo floor plan shows digital

Top left is where the large stands are. From previous post HP is where Heidelberg might have been.
Canon close to Oce. Epson inkjet well placed for proofing etc.

This is a general purpose print event, just not much litho.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Blog search has found M-Bossed, they seem to be close to Chicago.

Apparently Ricoh has the advertising profile that Heidelberg would have in Dusseldorf.

The South hall is far from full but there is a lot of info on web and workflow.

Obviously I am still at a distance but I am reminded of Digital Solutions, a very small show compared to IPEX and no longer continuing. An annual event can keep up with technology, on whatever scale.

Saturday, October 02, 2010

A bit more blogsearch and it turns out Heidelberg are not there. Some people have known this for a while. Cory Smith reported for PrintPlanet on the prospects for 2010 and headlined that both Heidelberg and Komori had passed on Graph Expo for 2010. Apparently the Heidelberg budget concentrated on IPEX for 2010 and they expect to be back in 2011. HP are on booth 1200 at the South Hall entrance. Cory Smith notes that  Komor"is much more active than most other offset manufacturers in the social media space, offering clues to some of the investments Komori might be making in 2010."

I do not know how Graph Expo has appeared in previous years but this lack of Heidelberg is impossible to compare to any IPEX or drupa that can be imagined. This appears to be a digital show. More next week.

Found this one on social media. I expect there are others. Video was definitely strong at IPEX. More searching during the week.
Australia shows the future for Heidelberg

At IPEX there was a view from Heidelberg that they would have a digital offer during this year. Not their own product but a distribution arrangement that would integrate production. All I can find on this topic is that Konica Minolta has a distribution agreement in Australia. This was arranged at IPEX.

Will there be a similar deal in the USA? At IPEX I noticed that the Xerox stand was very close to the Heidelberg stand and they both featured integrated workflows for litho and digital. The Xerox screens showed detailed production info on each Heidelberg device. Someone should check out the Xerox booth to find out if this is still the sort of thing Heidelberg supports.

As memory serves a Heidelberg announcement was indicated for sometime this year.  
Kodak could regionalise the Guardian guide.

I think this is so. Eric Owen says there will be an announcement in Chicago about working examples of the Prospect 5000XL. Could it produce an A5 stapled booklet such as the Guide in the UK Guardian? This has some national info and then a section in the middle with local info. I think it is just north and south. With inkjet there could be a dozen variations. I find the page sequence confusing as it is at the moment. Also I don't need to know any detail east of Bristol. Not being rude about Swindon but I am not likely to need the times of cinemas etc as I get at the moment.
For a while I have been posting to Posterous as a way to integrate various concerns. I raised some Questions for Chicago  as a way to report on Graph Expo. This might work out ok. I will try to find some solid links for my speculation. My assumption is that things are much the same as at IPEX a few months ago. The only recent development has been confirmation that What They Think is online only. this came out of IPEX World on LinkedIn where there has been discussion on the future of trade magazines. there seems to be no disagreement that business to business can be done online, including the buzz around a print show. Printweek this week, the print version that is, has a slightly different take. Jo Francis doubts the actual use levels for mobile devices and rejects the idea that "print is dead". The editorial has a more balanced view on print and the internet, claiming there can be "the best of both worlds".

So I have found some info on variable data in PDF. (based on a few clicks from Goole blogsearch, like most of my research) . Printing Impressions reported on Sept 20th that ISO has released a standard on variable data and PDF-
"ISO 16612-2 Graphic technology — Variable data exchange — Part 2: Using PDF/X-4 and PDF/X-5 (PDF/VT)" defines the PDF/VT document format and methods to enable reliable document exchange for variable data and transactional printing. Transactional documents include invoices, statements, and documents that integrate billing information with marketing information (TransPromo).
According to Tim Donahue of Eastman Kodak, document editor and chairman of the ISO TC 130 Task Force that developed the ISO PDF/VT standard, "The PDF/VT standard is based upon the result of rigorous examination of variable data and transactional print workflows and on requirements drawn directly from variable print practitioners. The members of the Task Force that created this standard included an international group of experts in variable data and transactional print workflow, digital printing, PDF, JDF, color management and high performance RIP technology." 
There is also support from Adobe. Naresh Gupta, senior vice president, Print and Publishing said

"We believe that this emerging standard will finally fulfill the promise of Variable Date Printing (VDP) and continue to drive growth of the digital print arena. Eco-systems based on PDF/VT and the Adobe PDF Print Engine will further streamline workflows and deliver more reliable, higher quality print results."

It will be interesting to see how much info comes from Adobe over the next few days. It appears there is no booth. At IPEX the promotion on the PDF Print Engine was lowkey. Perhaps they just have to reach the key people who design equipment. But there will be a new release of Acrobat sometime this year. Many of the knowledge workers who use Acrobat have no knowledge of the pre-press tools included such as JDF. My guess is they still won't know much about variable data way into 2011 and beyond. Will Adobe do much to educate the public about Acrobat 10. Maybe PDF is so well known that upgrades will just roll on without any further explanation.

I fear a rave is coming on. I will wait and see what happens during next week.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

My collection of video as Magnify - Printshow has been updated for FESPA. Here is a sample from Amsterdam last year

There are still a lot of clips I made from IPEX but this Magnify approach is working ok. It is fairly automatic based on keyword searching. But I do delete stuff and will add more for FESPA.

The print industry is making good use of social media, including video. This is good for the culture.

Monday, June 14, 2010

OhmyNews have not yet edited my stories on IPEX so here are links. I am exploring Exeter this week as a site for social media so need a place to show where the info is. I think IPEX 2010 made a lot of progress so there could be several connections in Exeter. Continues on blog for WiFi Exeter.

By the way, I have started a Posterous blog to collect brief links to most of what I write. It is an extension of email I think. So it may be briefer than some blog posts but there is more space than Twitter.

Print Show Zooms Social Media

Xerox Tips IPEX Digital Solutions Past Heidelberg

Adobe Classic Completes Messaging to IPEX

Also video on my YouTube channel

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

HP announce email to print. see Business Week and other reports.

Apparently ink for desktop printers is a large source of HP income. So the excitement of IPEX needs to be put in perspective.

Print is part of communications, as explained often during the talk around IPEX. Presumably HP support email to print service providers. But the case for this has to be made. It is not obvious from the reports so far.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The quality on the clips from the Zi8 is so variable, no actually quite bad on day one. So I am still loading to YouTube but here is the official Kodak version of the Prosper launch. Under two minutes as an edit.

While looking at Youtube I tried to find something from Printweek. Nothing so far so maybe all video from IPEX will be exclusive to the Printweek website. There is an interview though from FESPATV. thing is, if the shows and the companies load straight to YouTube then the magazines will have to raise the game somehow.

This is from Brand Republic. Haymarket policy across all brands is always open to change.

I am now slowing down a bit. three stories for OhmyNews not yet edited. There have been some views though but not many for the Adobe one. Maybe a story about what did not happen is a bit obscure.

Still loading video to Youtube from the Zi8. the thing is it is all in MOV format. Tried to play it in Quicktime for Windows  but it thinks it is a still picture. Can't edit in Studio or Premiere. Kodak seem to think that everyone is a Mac fan. could be true in the USA, I don't know. Why is there no format that apple could support on import but also works for the rest of us? All that Steve Jobs says about Flash could be true but actually my browser usually crashes when it has to launch Quicktime. The files are enormous and there seems to be no streaming. Usually good to watch though if I download and play them outside of a browser.

I have found some software online to convert from MOV but meanwhile I am just loading to YouTube so i can have a look. The focus starts out wrong for the first twenty or so. Then day two I discover there is a zoom. Just in time for Canon, the camera is more or less working.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Takeaways from What They Think, LINK still no embed code.

This is a recovery with new media in the background. IPEX is just a filler between two drupas.

Except there is IGAS in 2011. Inkjet could get stronger so the nature of drupa changes. Expect Heidelberg in Hall 1 but will there be space for some guests?

Monday, May 24, 2010

IPEX 2010 marks the end of Adobe Classic as a marketing priority.
Google I / O focus for mobile Flash

Through PrintersLounge on Twitter I have found a story on the Printweek website - Adobe launch cements 'commitment to print'.. 
Adobe senior product manager Mark Lewiecki said that any suggestion that the US software giant was losing interest in the sector (following the closure of its Adobe print partner programme) was nonsense.
However, it is obvious to me that the Adobe priority for this IPEX was much lower than on any previous occasion. I think a new version of the PDF Print Engine is a major occasion. I do have access to the press area for IPEX so noticed that hard copy of a press release did not appear till the second day. Actually the paper was described as a "media alert" and I could not find it on the Adobe press release website. I heard about the 2.5 release through the FujiFilm stand where Mark Lewiecki speaks at 4.15 each day. As far as i know that is the full extent of Adobe presence at IPEX for public access.

John Warnock and Charles Geschke were announced as Champions of Print for IPEX 2010 but were not able to attend the opening ceremony. There was nothing about IPEX I could find on the events page of the UK website ahead of the event.

I found the presentation about the Print Engine very interesting and am not trying to criticise the contribution from Mark  Lewiecki. But I think it has to be recognised that Adobe priorities have changed. Most of the messaging has been about Google I/O and Flash on mobiles. IPEX started on May 18th. The Tweet from Adobe with the information that there is no Adobe stand  is dated May 21st, copied to Adobe UK.

It seems that the decision to purchase  Macromedia was based on a view of the classic Adobe products and the sense of continuing to promote them. this is interesting as Warnock and Geschke continue although the Chief Technology Officer is Kevin Lynch. There are not many examples of senior management switching technology away from the base they were themselves involved in. There is an element of speculation in this but this is just a blog. There is clearly a change in Adobe priorities and from the UK, IPEX 2010 seems like a moment to clarify this.
IPEX Print Show Zooms Social Video
Twitter Followers Too Busy For Wetherspoons

At IPEX Frank Romano spoke about the future of print as just one part of communications. I know this because Kodak recorded a video and put it online. Kodak supported video to the extent of giving away cameras at their press conference. They see Social Media as important and cameras as a large part of this.

Previously Andrew Tribute has contributed to a text blog for Xerox In the Balance or what They Think or even for Attributes>/a>

At this IPEX he is doing a series of interviews as video for WhatTheyThink. The link is to one on Heidelberg. Can't find any embed code but I think a link is ok. One thing I discovered at IPEX is that What They Think is only online. No hard copy at all. Never would have guessed.

Printspeak have a range of video online, currently featuring an interview with Trevor Crawford, event director of IPEX.

Oce TV have the basis of a studio on the stand. There is space for an audience and some large screens to expand the pictures. They post everything to YouTube including this interview with Andy Tribute. It may be surprising that he thinks this is an Inkjet IPEX, not the social video IPEX. But he explains that more of his journalism is on video.

Printweek are also including video in their media mix. Matt Whip was part of the panel for a discussion in the Kodak K Zone

There was not as much space for a studio on the Printweek stand. They did have to fit in an editorial office and production for the IPEX daily. But there are several videos on the website.

There is a lot more to come. YouTube has a lot of choices from other sources if you start with the links above. Canon has a policy on social media but I have yet to find the video. Perhaps by the time of drupa they will become followers of Kodak and give away some cameras to the bloggers.

I will be loading more of my own video soon, even the low quality ones. At the opening ceremony it was explained to me that there is a choice of focus. It took till day two to realise there is a zoom. But clearly social video can only get better.

The Twitter feed on IPEX has been getting stronger but I am not sure the #Tweetpex meeting on Saturday was as well supported as it might have been. Several Tweets about having missed it or not being sure where the Wetherspoons was. I was back in Exeter by then and tried to arrange something similar in support. Just the two of us as it turned out. Maybe something will happen later.
Xerox Tips IPEX Digital Solutions Past Heidelberg
Compositing has left the buildings

(outline notes for OhmyNews story one)

IPEX 2010 has a new layout, a range roughly from very digital to very mechanical. This only partly because pre-press is at the beginning and finishing at the end. Computers and the Web are throughout the show but the description "Digital Solutions" is used for the halls with pre-press and/ or digital printing. The only complication with this is that Xerox are in a hall just beyond Heidelberg.

Heidelberg press conference confirmed that they will have a partnership with digital kit "in this calendar year"- 2010. But not specific. However, Xerox demonstrate how workflow could cover digital and litho. They print  short runs of wrap round covers for a photobook that Heidelberg are printing litho. They have a Prinect screen showing the production status of each Heidelberg machine at IPEX. So if Xerox is not on the shortlist at least they made an effort. They also show integration with FujiFilm XMF but this is not as advanced as with Prinect for messaging  within the Job Definition Format (JDF).

Heidelberg also show a prototype of an iPhone app linked to Prinect. This can display the current status of jobs. It is not clear if memebers of the sales team will be able to make adjustments to the schedule.

Meanwhile FujiFilm showed how inkjet could target a short run. Heidelberg are responding with improvements on make ready times.

Digital print took much of the space at this IPEX. Manroland did not display any machines. Benny Landa, founder of Indigo, predicted that at the next IPEX HP (who bought Indigo) will have the largest turnover as well as the largest stand area.

The consequences of digital innovation have also reached composition and page make-up to the extent that they seem no longer to be part of IPEX. There is no stand for Adobe or Quark. Apple were not at drupa a couple of years ago and not even at BETT, the schools show that is also the only hardware show with a comprehensive range. It seems that people in pre-press now accept the "print-ready" PDF that publishers and clients supply. there is a lot of software on show for managing the colour. But a whole section of the industry seems to have vanished at least from this show. The debate about whether the iPad is a threat to print is at a tangent to whether pre-press can offer a service to publishers that includes digital formats. Elpical image optimisation includes an option for twelve shades of grey as required on a Kindle.

The layout of IPEX is complicated so you need to cover the complete length at least once. Esko Artwork are at the digital end and have a reputation for design software including 3D models of packaging. At this IPEX they are also showing short run finishing equipment from Kongsberg. This very automated and computer controlled but also definitely part of the world of hard copy. At the other end of the show in Hall 17 Manroland have a space for RedTie Web-To-Print. Previously this has been thought of as mostly used with digital printing.

There is still a balance of digital and mechanical technology thoughout the show. For whatever reason Xerox chose their spot, my overall impression is that Heidelberg has become part of the transition.

Comment welcome. Longer version in OhmyNews soon.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Adobe announce version 2.5 of the PDF Print Engine. Found this report from Wide Format Imaging. There is no hard copy at the moment in the IPEX press area. But there was a presentation at the FujiFilm stand yesterday and some hard copy is expected for today. Later there will be some detail in this blog. But first impression is that the Adobe push on PDF could be stronger.

So far the London College of Communication has not turned up. Not sure why but it may be to do with the new structure. The name changed to leave out the word "print" and now the idea of "print and publishing" has gone into "design" and "media". How will this work? It will be presented somewhere sometime so when this makes sense it will probably help to make sense of IPEX.

Kodak gave away a video camera to the press as part of their links to social media. I tried it out before reading the book so was unaware there was a zoom. Also there is a focus switch for closeups that I somehow turned on. So yesterday may not turn out too well. Today could be better, still some space left.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Press web access now working. So far much as expected. Adobe do not have a stand but there is a full page ad in the show guide with a link to the website. There will be a speaker on the Adobe PDF Print Engine on the FujiFilm stand, maybe other places as well. But nothing on Creative Suite. I think the compositing / page design aspects are much reduced. There is a lot on colour control, remote proofing etc. but the PDF files seem to have been supplied from somewhere else. More later.

The FujiFilm Inkjet was delayed slightly by trouble with fuses but it is working ok. Heidelberg now recognise there is a place for digital, they still talk of an offer sometime this year. No details of which company they will work with but Xerox have a stand in the next space. Previously Heidelberg have always taken up a complete hall.

Digital is very strong. The Weatherspoons is about on the border where the emphasis is on mechanical engineering. The coffee shops in this area have yet to open as of 8.25 local time.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Draft story for OhmyNews

Starts with Adobe, later what is pre-media?

Saturday, May 15, 2010

draft story. if no updates next week this is roughly what I might discover

Probably first one around Adobe hardly being there.

They are shown as attending but no stand number. I think they have moved online. Since Macromedia they concentrate on Flash. Also I cannot find a stand for Quark. No Apple, they were not at drupa. Not sure what "pre-media" means. It could be just plates, proofing, colour management for a workflow that assumes the PDF files arrived ok from somewhere else. So all the desktop design is somewhere else from people who actually are more interested in web animation and video. 

Bit sweeping but will check out what is there.

Ghent PDF talk Tuesday 3.30. will aim to send something for OhmyNews soon after. They are definitely still concerned with PDF but looking at other formats.

Adobe in London looking at web analytics. Guardian guest speaker - not studying manroland

next story about inkjet, runlengths etc. I will wait on other sources to reach a conclusion. The IPEX 2002 blog will link to Andrew Tribute as soon as I find where he is blogging.

Digital Printer at the back wall of the HP area will have a series of online updates. Printweek are producing a show daily on Komori offset so are not entirely convinced about digital. But I think Digital Printer will have a few facts established by about day five. 

This is the Twitter IPEX. Simpler to argue than the social media IPEX or the social networking IPEX. And it seems to be true, much stuff on Twitter already including plans to meet up in weatherspoons on the first Saturday.

More later. This page will be updated. Please contact if you would like an invite to add something

Will Pollard

@will789gb on Twitter

Friday, May 14, 2010

Searching on "IPEX + Adobe" on Twitter finds just enquiries as to what might be happening. There is nothing from Adobe about IPEX. I seem to find more on four years ago.

Probably next week the Adobe concern will be on Google. Twitter finds this take on the I/O event and the prospects for Flash on a mobile device.

Apple of course will not be at IPEX at all. They were not at drupa. The context for hard copy is a challenge.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

I took quite a few words previously from Zac Bolan in PrintAction in a previous post. This must be ok as he has sent me a link to his blog and a review of Creative Suite 5. Of course he suggests you should subscribe to the print version but there is also a link to a PDF. This concentrates on Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. What interests me is the background on what Adobe is trying to do with each release.

By September of 2008, most Adobe output issues became a thing of the past as modern RIPs conquered transparency. A meager 18 months following the birth of CS3, a primped Creative Suite 4 added productivity to its list of key features. Unfortunately the sound of banks collapsing drowned out much of the fanfare as Adobe launched CS4 into an economically challenged market.
So if a modern RIP, assuming they are widely available, can cope with the output issues, then there is nothing left for Adobe to develop and no reason to attend a print show.

If the era of Adobe Classic is over, it is easier to understand the direction since buying Macromedia.
Just as Adobe’s Quark-killer got the page layout market in a stranglehold, designers shifted away from specializing in print and towards rich media and motion. Fortunately Adobe’s considerable depth in the interactive realm meant that InDesign would not be left behind. Reflecting this market shift, InDesign
CS5 has transmogrified from page layout champ into an interactive document powerhouse! Six new Interactive panels allow the rich media designer to build basic animations, add user-responsive buttons and embed video and audio into an InDesign document. The file can then be output to interactive PDF format for distribution or exported directly to SWF (Flash Player) for viewing. The InDesign file can also be exported to Flash CS5 while maintaining all the typographic and layout parameters. 
This is great if that is what you want. But there are implications for the print industry as such.

However, in spite of delivering a strong update with Creative Suite 5, many in the print community question Adobe’s continued commitment to the analogue world. Adobe was noticeably absent from Chicago’s Print 09 last September, at a time when North America’s largest quadrennial print show could have used the
support. As if to further emphasize a new direction, Adobe’s acquisition of the Webanalytics company Omniture went public during that show. More recently, the January 2010 announcement that Adobe would discontinue its popular Partner Connection Print Service Provider Program seemed to punctuate its sentiment with an exclamation mark.
So, again I ask why Adobe would choose now to groom an already fresh Creative Suite? The answer is quite simple: Adobe’s become the de facto enabler of the current explosion in digital media. Make no mistake, while print designers and producers will reap the feature harvest of this latest incarnation of Creative Suite, Adobe is clearly targeting creators of rich media with this release – be it Web-based or application oriented.

At IPEX there is an area described as "pre-media" and it is not yet clear how this is different from "pre-press".

I met Zac Bolan at drupa when he was on the Founder stand. He showed me what is now FounderFX. This seems to be page layout for the rest of us. Not suitable for animation or video, but actually just what a lot of people want. More later in this blog.

I do have one quibble with his review of Creative Suite 5. The approach to masking in Illustrator is described as the same as "featured in Macromedia Freehand before it was absorbed by Adobe." I am not sure it was that way round. The Chief Technology Officer is Kevin Lynch.
Ghent PDF Group still on about PDF. I have found a meeting on 19th about PDF at the Knowledge Centre
Many will agree that PDF had once seemed to be the ideal format for exchanging and publishing information – and has undoubtedly been a tremendous boon to premedia workflows. In this session, Zwang will discuss its relevance in the new world of information publishing. As new electronic distribution tools continue to debut, many wonder if print is being replaced by these new technologies; such as smartphones, tablets, pads, and more.
So it could be that the PDF world accepts that other formats have a role. Reflow is an issue on small screens, also the time it takes for files to load. Adobe is still not advertising where it will be so I conclude that they don't see the show as that interesting. Postscript and PDF are not growth areas. Flash will be discovered online so there is no need to talk about it at shows.

Meanwhile Microsoft offer online versions of Office roughly similar to Google Docs. The era of desktop software may be coming to an end except for special interests such as Creative Suite.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Blogsearch finds Adobe at IPEX. Mystery continues on where there may or may not be a stand (booth) for Adobe at IPEX 2010. There is nothing on the UK Adobe website and no stand on the IPEX listing. But blogsearch has found a release from Fujifilm about the presentations each day on stand 9-CD360.
The final two demonstrations of the day that will take place in the Integrated Production area will allow visitors to understand all about “Managing personalised print” at 15.30pm, with Adobe rounding off each day with an overview of its vision for the “PDF Print Engine” at 16.15pm.
So the PDF Print Engine is a "vision". Maybe there will be more detail over the next couple of weeks.

Following up some links from drupa I also found a PDF of some pages from Print Action, published in Canada. Zac Bolan has a blog with links to selected articles, including a report from Print 09 in Chicago. The headline is "Quark Promotes, Markzware Searches and Adobe Stays Home".
I spent my last day at PRINT 09 wandering the North Hall looking for old friends in the prepress software world. I set out in search of Adobe’s booth, as this company has always been a mainstay at these printing shows. After a cursory sweep of the hall, however, Adobe was nowhere to be found. I realize that times are tough (Adobe just announced a 29 percent drop in its Q1 profits for the current fiscal year), but fact remains that Adobe is still turning a profit, and in spite of Adobe’s push in new-media directions, the bulk of its empire still rests on a foundation of print. Adobe owes a presence at these shows in respect of the community that built its business.
As if to emphasize the perception that Adobe has moved on to greener online media pastures, the news broke during PRINT 09 about its acquisition of Omniture, a well-known Web-analytics entity. The floor was buzzing with speculation about Adobe’s intentions with this unlikely accession. Most felt that it signalled Adobe’s interest in expanding its Web portfolio to include support for e-commerce and online marketing – yet another step further away from print.
Zac Bolan has got a point. The acquisition of Macromedia was shift enough. Acrobat development is now an advert for Flash. There is nothing new about PDF. Connect can work just as well outside Acrobat. Perhaps we should just accept this. Postscript and PDF are open standards with ISO documentation. Adobe are not investing much in variations. Marketing theory suggests promotion of the rising stars and forgetting about the cash cows. If only the paranoid survive, it is urgent to concentrate on the next thing and not  to lose focus on existing customers.

At IPEX there may be competing options for most Adobe products from the classic phase before Macromedia. Perhaps Adobe have just accepted this as what is going to happen.

But if anyone knows a stand number for Adobe at IPEX 2010, please add a comment.

Monday, May 10, 2010

In my story for OhmyNews I quoted a statement from the London Book Fair that the iPad has got five fonts in ePUB mode. A comment has led me to this blog where it appears there are lots more.

I still think that ePUB is intended to be mostly text and because the screens can be small the less design the better in terms of anything fancy. A paperback from the 1930s had some colour on the front but the pages are mostly continuous text in the same font. not very exciting maybe but paperbacks did get better. So I think 5 fonts would be ok. But thanks to Bob Maguire for sending the link. 

This has turned up in email. Notice the Guardian is the sample copy. What to think at IPEX? there will be a debate hosted by Frank Romano. A few years ago the Guardian spent millions on manroland kit. So somewhere near Print City there will be a related discussion.

Linked In has a topic on the IPEX 2010 group.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

OhmyNews has put my story from the London Book Fair on the front screen. Also there is a transcript of a speech by Oh Yeon-ho, founder of OhmyNews, at the LIFT Conference in Switzerland. They have used the chart from IDPF on e-book sales as lead graphic. And they have included my opinions at the end. (You cannot just put your own views into reporting, but often they allow something brief for people who complete reading the whole story). The published version has been slightly changed, but I think this is an improvement for clarity.
Next month at IPEX, a print show in Birmingham UK, Frank Romano will chair a discussion on whether the new devices will kill print media. It is very unlikely that print will suffer a sudden death but it is not too soon to discuss the rise of new digital book formats in the future.

Digital Printer ahead of IPEX includes a report - "iPad conversion tools arrive" (page 7). This features Woodwing and Express KCS. I do not know if they will be at IPEX. They might have been at the Digital Zone of the London Book Fair. so far as I know the companies at the Digital Zone will not be at IPEX. But I don't see why not. There is a workflow that might go to print or some format for screen.

Previously I have imagined things a bit out of time and space so that there is a print show in the bit of Earl's Court left over from the bookfair. This is obviously fiction and not the sort of thing to put in reports for Ohmynews. But the tag #totalEC2 may find this and also link back to this post.

More later from actual IPEX.
Another post on what I don't know. There will be more of these. I have now got a press badge for IPEX 2010 as a Citizen Reporter for OhmyNews. So what is a Citizen Reporter? I think I am getting to be more concerned with finding out things. But the reporting is about things I am involved with anyway. I have worked around printing in various ways so the writing about it is not my main task. Maybe that is where citizen journalism is distinct. The journalism comes about with the editing. So I hope there will be a flow of stories around IPEX. If they are not in OhmyNews try Twitter and #IPEX2010 plus something else to search on.

The editors in Seoul switched my headlines for a report from Digital Print World / Total Print Expo. I thought the news was that Heidelberg turned up and demonstrated litho for short runs. the chosen headline was a sub story about the London College of Communication conference about e-books.

Back to things I don't know, or the main one at the moment. Apparently Adobe will have a stand at IPEX but there is no info about this. The UK site on events is mostly about Flash and video. In Digital Printer Simon Eccles suggests there will be something about APPE so maybe there will just be a map on where else to go. At least there may be a real person to talk to. In the UK we sometimes get an email and an invite to a Connect session. But at IPEX there may be a chance to ask a question. For example, why is there nothing new about PDF in CS5? Has Mars been terminated? Meanwhile carry on blogging and see what turns up.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

This IPEX blog will be mostly about the UK. Some posts about IPEX will be in the drupa blog, for example social media and PODi.

In the UK I am interested in the Guardian as I read it most days. On the weekend the Guide appears with a central section listing events in the south of England. The page numbers are a bit confusing as there are two sequences. i suppose the middle section can be a different number of pages for different regions. Why do they not do more versions and just have one sequence of pages. I think digital printing should make this easy enough.

A couple of years ago the Guardian bought new printing kit from manroland. they spent about £500 million as memory serves. manroland will not be displaying much kit at IPEX this month, maybe because UK newspapers already have enough. But at Print City of which manroland is a major part surely they could offer some way to print inserts? They showed variable data on a page last time. I don't really have much interest in Swindon local times for films as I don't get there. Something more detailed for the Exeter side of Bristol would suit.

By the way the Exeter local newspaper is now printed in Didcot.

Friday, April 30, 2010

I have started a channel to combine video ahead of IPEX 2010. It is called "Printshow", hosted by Magnify. It includes several from drupa and there may well be others. It uploads on a search every three days and then I will delete the errors. Amazing what turns up so apologies if this wastes your time. It is not an open site but please add a comment with link suggestions. It could be extended to other admin logins during IPEX.

This will be the "mobile video IPEX". You heard it here first.
I came across some Apple thoughts about Flash while using blogsearch for something else. The bit that stands out
Apple has a long relationship with Adobe. In fact, we met Adobe’s founders when they were in their proverbial garage. Apple was their first big customer, adopting their Postscript language for our new Laserwriter printer. Apple invested in Adobe and owned around 20% of the company for many years. The two companies worked closely together to pioneer desktop publishing and there were many good times. Since that golden era, the companies have grown apart.

As far as I know neither Apple nor Adobe will be at IPEX. So desktop publishing only continues with Canon and Hewlett Packard. Mobile video? Do we really need this? HTML5 sounds interesting though.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Hewlett Packard have the most space at IPEX 2010. Maybe they will show something from Palm. The press release has no detail about future mobile devices. The slate expected later this year uses Windows. Will there be something with webOS that could read ePUB for example?

HP is still into print. Communications can cover a lot. This sort of development widens the scope of what the IPEX event is about.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

I am trying out Tales of Things, a social media site linking online and real things through barcodes. Can you travel in time and space? Next week I don't think I will get to Internet World although I would like to. There will be a keynote theatre featuring Meg Pickard from the Guardian and also a stand for Brand Republic, the online aspect of Haymarket. I read Printweek and the Guardian in print. My guess is that both organisations actually think more about online than they write about in the print versions. So the barcodes may link to a space where this is discussed. Not in real time obviously.

Brand Republic Booth

Guardian Keynote

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Digital Zone at the London Book Fair was very impressive I thought. The ePUB standard is capable of the design impact of a 1930s paperback. the iPad can do video etc. but continuous text is what a lot of people want. I am still thinking about "pre-media" as used to describe part of IPEX. surely this eBook aspect should be included?

More video later.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Digital Zone at the London Book Fair looks stronger than last year. More on this next week.

Meanwhile Printweek have published a guide to "pre-media" at IPEX. I think the scope should expand to e-books and even the video etc for whatever a book is to be called on an iPad etc. there is a shift going on and even on a small scale the Book event is now including technology.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I have found out a bit more about Media Week. The logo includes the web address. Previously i thought Brand Republic was the most web sensitive aspect of Haymarket. But it is Media week that blogger Jo Francis links to when looking for a report on the iPad.

Just possibly there may be less demand for print if the iPad works out. That is the view from Media Week. Previously doubts were raised about the future of a paperless UK government. Gordon Brown is not always convincing, especially when there is no obvious policy on how broadband will reach the whole of the UK. But if Media Week takes a view then Printweek cannot be too dissenting. You might think.

I have put a comment on the Jo Francis blog linking to Alan Rusbridger in the Observer. He too has been thinking about the iPad and appears to consider 30% cost savings for the Guardian if every reader would accept digital delivery.

Will it transform newspaper finances? The Knight Ridder team worked on the assumption that it would – but only if you switched off the printing presses. Around 30% of the cost of a newspaper operation is tied up in the faintly Victorian industrial process of print, paper, trains, lorries, shops and – where they still exist — paperboys/girls.

The Knight Rider reference is back to Roger Fiddler and work from fifteen years ago. I came across this through the book Media Big Bang, published in Korea. It was given away for review during the first OhmyNews conference on citizen journalism. UK broadband is now just about where Korea was when Tackwhan Kim and Sangbok Lee were writing. It will be interesting to see how Haymarket works out a balance on print and Web ( OhmyNews house style by the way for the Web to start with a capital letter). I have started to follow both Printweek and Media Week on Twitter.
There is more detail now about CS5. Can't find anything much on Acrobat but there is something on EPUB from InDesign on InDesign Secrets-
Improved Export to ePub and XHTML. Did you use local formatting instead of styles anywhere? Don’t worry, local formatting can be maintained when you export to ePub or XHTML in InDesign CS5. Also, you can tell InDesign to use Page Order or XML Structure to determine the order of exported content. That means if you specify XML Structure, you get a chance to reorder, add, or remove content from the XML structure panel before exporting, giving you more control. We still think that’s a pretty clunky way to handle the export, but it’s far better than nothing.

So this is still clunky though it appears people like me who still use "local formatting" will not be totally confounded when it all vanishes. Still, the impression is still that this release is to move flat pages towards animation. Export to EPUB is not a priority. There may be something else that works well enough and could be cheaper. The prices for CS5 are an issue in Europe.

Meanwhile there is good news about Buzzword-
Buzzword integration. Are you a fan of Buzzword, the collaborative word processor program that’s part of We are. In InDesign CS5, Buzzword gets its own File > Place from Buzzword command. You can even choose to link to the Buzzword document, so that as colleagues update the shared file “in the cloud,” you can update your local file in InDesign. (Alas, any formatting you applied to the text in InDesign is lost, just like linking to Word files.) You can also export to Buzzword to create new Buzzword documents in your account from the contents of InDesign text frames. Neat. Unfortunately, until Buzzword supports paragraph and character styles, this feature will have only limited appeal.

Buzzword, free online, has pretty good EPUB creation. The contents structure gets a bit complicated. But for a lot of people it may be good enough for shorter texts. Then some InDesign professional could rapidly render it all into a proper book.

Monday, April 12, 2010

It seems to me that CS5 is the end of Adobe Classic. More or less Macromedia in the case of CS5. Flash distribution assumed almost all of the time. I checked with the product timeline and it was the case that for the two previous Creative Suites there was a version of Acrobat just before the CS release. This time around the print production is not the issue. Acobat 10 looks as if it will coincide with web services of some kind towards the end of the year.

More surprising for me was the lack of mention of EPUB or the Reader for eBooks in the launch. Buzzword is pretty good as a way to create EPUB. My guess is that InDesign may not be really suited to the text structures required. Previous versions seemed not to be very prioritised on this. It may be possible but I guess InDesign is now intended for moving pages to Flash, showing off video etc.

There is a cost to CS5, rather high in Europe. Perhaps there will be some energy for looking at cheaper ways to cope with XML, PDF, EPUB, plain text and all the stuff Adobe is no longer interested in. CS5 will still be there when the Apple crowd have worked out what to do with Flash.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

At IPEX on 19th May the Ghent PDF Group will sponsor a meeting on "Is PDF still relevant? How and Why?"

Seems a strange question for a print show. PDF is pretty central I would guess. One reason it seems less relevant is that Adobe have more or less stopped promoting it. It seems very unlikely that MARS will reach a release. There are enough rough and ready ways to go from XML to PDF. Acrobat 10 will probably be another plug for Connect and Flash.

It could be the case that after ten years or so PDF is not suitable for margins on software so is not promoted. But apparently Acrobat is still contributing to Adobe income. There may be attention for other options in creating PDF. is putting PDF in the cloud. Google docs is another way of doing this and there are several others.

Apart from Flash there is also interest in ePUB as a format. This is based on XML and reflows on mobile devices. The PDFXML Inspector available from MARS / Adobe Labs works well with ePUB. Maybe this will be part of the discussion.

"Pre-Media" could have a wide scope, there could even be IPEX time for workflows including Flash.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The IPEX list of companies now shows Adobe and a "wish list" button. Usually this allows you to add to places to visit. Is it in this case a sort of promotion for IPEX? Several people have said they would like Adobe to be there, that sort of thing. There is no "wish list" option for Apple or Quark that I can find. But I would sign a petition if it would help.

My guess is that Adobe will be in background mode. Apple are too busy packing up mobile devices. This kind of context should concentrate minds.
Reading the Observer on Sunday I was reminded of Chris Linford's claim that technology innovation takes about fourty years. The news is that the asperand has become a curated object for the New York Museum of Modern Art. Jemima Kiss reports that electronic messaging was developed in 1965 but Ray Tomlinson needed the asperand in 1971 to indicate different computers.

So 40 years from 1965 has already happened. 2011 is getting closer. Chris Linford talks about innovation during the LCC Futures conferences held at Total Print in Earl's Court until 2009 at LCC in Elephant and Castle. When issues come up such as the potential for the ebook I sometimes think that is called a "Futures" conference to suggest that these are issues the print industry will only have to face at some vague point in the future. Email is still mostly just text, almost no design. So pretty basic but the public acceptance could be a sign of things to come.

Meanwhile Matt Whipp on the Printweek blogs is doubting whether Gordon Brown's ideas for government websites will work out. The idea is to move a load of form filling online ansd save money. Matt Whip points out that his granny cannot type, let alone move a mouse. I have left a comment suggesting the print community should take this a bit more urgently. So far the UK government concern with bandwidth has been a bit low energy. At least they realise there are savings to be made for government as such. There could be a time when the percentage of citizens who cannot use a mouse is so low that the tax authorities will give away voice recognition.

OK that last idea was imagined, not a prediction. I sometimes wander into fiction. this is only a blog, like the time I met a unicorn walking to Paris in time for the next LCC Futures. Assuming there may not be a Total Print this year so soon after IPEX then the conference could be at any time. Speculation online could do little harm.

At IPEX the Knowledge Centre Seminar Theatre will feature the LCC on 24th May at 1400. This is definite fact.

Monday, March 29, 2010

I am trying to think forward to Learning Technologies 2011. A bit of time travel is sometimes useful. From the recent earnings meeting it seems Adobe will concentrate on Flash for CS5 but Acrobat will be updated later in the year, maybe mostly in the cloud. My guess is that Learning Technologies will still be mostly Flash but PDF and flat pages will be in there somewhere. Many people will consider Google docs and other lower cost options, also online document networks such as Scribd and Slideshare. Both have a design that seems to be interested in documents even though Flash is in there to display the pages. Adobe design is always pushing us somewhere else I find. So this sort of situation exists now even though some products are not launched or widely available.

I have put more about this in the Sandbox board for Networked Learning.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Blogger Jo Francis has returned to Blackwell's on Charing Cross Road to check out the Espresso book machine. The main news is that the machine is not working, waiting on a part. In the extended online version of her blog she mentions the quality of the samples displayed, finding them "pretty ropey". Earlier comment in Printweek had been critical of the binding.

I visited Charing Cross Road a couple of weeks ago and it is true the machine has been waiting on a part. But there are over 200 back orders. Someone has been happy with the result at some point. Last Year Victor Keegan tweeted about the four day wait when the Espresso was working ok.

I think the print industry media should be more positive about this. I think it was in Printweek I read that a Xerox version is expected. The current one is based on Konica Minolta kit. Probably it is the binding that will break down but surely Xerox will have a look at this? Long ago the print operation had a bookshop alongside. Why not a print device in the bookshop? Charing Cross Road still has some empty spaces at the moment. (Let me know if this is changing, easier to report from Hammersmith than from Exeter) . Suppose there was another Espresso in Foyles and maybe a couple in Dillons. Some competition but some sort of arrangement if one broke down.

So this blog is wandering into fantasy,far away from the evidence based traditions of print journalism. But why not? I still think there could be a print show in Earl's Court Two alongside the London Book Fair. Just a bit of time travel is involved. I guess the Espresso will be at Earl's Court again next month. if not, at least it will be remembered. The legitimate print industry can offer short runs of books. Just needs to follow up the public imagination.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

On the learn9 blog I am trying out the idea of A3 learning from Steve Wheeler. Anytime, anywhere, any place where place is a choice of space not just a location. there might have to be an "any device" aspect as well but I mostly assume a desktop. Mobile can come later.

I think the web as a source for learning input is fine but it almost always shifts time and place. You have to look for the common factors in the current situation and whatever you are connecting with. Other than that, things work out fine. There may be a common script or a process. Not sure about this, but a theory will clarify sometime.

So this is a bit better than just going into science fiction every so often. It is some sort of explanation for how the web seems to work. So I am going back to the idea of a print show at Earl's Court alongside the bookfair. Totally Earls Court Two or #totalEC2 is to fill out the rest of the space. I think the LCC Futures Conference is a part of this. The last time there was a Total Print Expo you had to walk all the way round to the other entrance, then up to the LCC conference. Previously you had to walk most of the way back again. Oh dear I am going back to an issue that makes no sense at all as #totalEC2 is just an online concept. But a staircase near the kit directly up to the conference is no bad thing. The LCC Futures Conference has consistently covered the issues that the printing industry needs to address. For example the name has changed so that print is part of communication. Further, the school of print and publishing has gone into either design or media. Thing is I could make out what "print and publishing" covered but both "media" and "design" seem a bit vague and not that different. Are they just aspects of any activity? there is a trend once university status is involved for subject titles to become more abstract and limited in scope. Just my opinion, this is only a blog. Also vocational topics get lost. The list of courses to be dropped includes marketing, public relations and advertising. It could be that any form of management or commercial skill is regarded as better taught somewhere else. The government pressure seems to be for specialisation in topics where a university can be in the top tier. So maybe marketing is something other than design or media. Whatever happened to the commercial artist? Dropping floral design is another thing, how can this be an academic subject?

Anyway, #totalEC2 will have a wider scope later. Starting with "what is communication as in LCC" seems enough for the next week or so.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Nothing against unicorns of course. I met one last year in Newquay on my way to a mind and body event. "You're up early" I said. "Yes, I have got to get to Paris in time for the LCC futures event."

No news yet and I don't know how fast a unicorn can travel. But maybe sometime this year. There won't be a Total Print occasion so dates hard to predict.
DRM discussion at the London Book Fair may follow the views at TOC New York. This clip starts with Apple and unicorn fantasy but stay with it for some good sense in my opinion.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Adobe Relaunches Acrobat as Stealth Flash
eLearning Maturity Emerges From Middle Management

This is a draft story for OhmyNews. Same text in both the learn9 and IPEX2002 blogs. May need to split later. When the editors add "in a related story" to one of the paragraphs you know you may have to start again.

Towards Maturity presented new research last month at Learning Technologies which showed that a surprising proportion of people working on training and development are unaware of how much senior management realise the benefits of introducing e-learning. The model on offer is to demonstrate value rather than complete a project that management understands and supports. One explanation for this could be that the technology introduced is changing faster than is generally known. Adobe concentrated on Flash and video with much less time for corporate documents such as flat PDF files.

The recent survey shows that e-learning results in 11% cost saving, 28% time saving and that the volume of use has gone up by 48%. In the area of business agility, 82% believed they could deliver learning interventions faster and 59% reported improvements in ability to implement changes in products and procedures. However the survey also showed that 38% do not know if line managers agree productivity has increased (36% are unsure) and 28% don't know if new solutions are now focused on business performance (33% are unsure). This is a perception from people working on e-learning and not a direct form of research on management. There is still the implication that about a quarter of line mamgers both know that e-learning has contributed to productivity and communicate this to the people involved. Similarly it appears that about 40% of line managers communicate about business objectives.

However this survey raises questions about models of business where there is supposed to be feedback to policy making or clarity of vision from leadership. Towards Maturity offer a model that starts with learner and work context and defining a need, then moves towards a demonstration of value. This could be a loop that gradually maintains a flow of resources for the projects. But it is not similar to assumptions about management systems in ISO standards where a policy statement has been agreed as strategy. As e-learning contibutes to the capability for changes in products and procedures there is a clear overlap with quality functions.

Perhaps the clarity of feedback has been overestimated in much of the business theory. Areas such as training and quality are assumed to contribute to existing operations but rarely contribute to changes in policy. The recent acceptance of e-learning may have happened through a gradual process that has avoided opposition rather than gaining much support.

Adobe presented mostly about Flash and online conferencing. They appear to have moved away from Postscript related products such as books or paper. Many senior managers would have found the selection of media surprising. PDF files started to be accepted because the design followed the look of a printed page. At Information Technologies there was emphasis on the feature that Connect can be launched from the Acrobat menu. Connect is entirely in Flash. It is rare to see a PDF file even if transformed into Flash paper. There is no way to save the comments or other content as PDF. The feature most promoted was that PDF can now contain Flash for video or sound. So Flash is a native format within PDF. It was mentioned that this could be a way to distribute Flash content even if the Flash player is not allowed within some organisations. The implication is that Flash design is sometimes reaching corporate desktops indirectly, not as the result of any plan.

Edvantage showed a PDF book with video, created in CourseBuilder for a schools in Sweden and Norway. This is still quite rare even though Adobe have promoted the option for a while. The link to schools confirmed my view that a show about adult learning should be held at the same time as BETT, a technology show for schools. They are both in January and BETT now reaches part of Olympia 2. There are different organisers at the moment.

Printweek recently reported that Adobe has closed the Print Service Provider partner programme in the UK due to declining membership. John Cunningham from Adobe UK said "Maybe it looks like Adobe isn't interested in the traditional print side anymore - of course we are, it's still a huge part of our business." However there is no sign yet of an Adobe stand on the floorplan for IPEX, a print show in Birmingham this May. My guess is that the Flash presence at Learning Technologies is a reasonable guide to Adobe marketing energy.

This year there was also a show for Learning and Skills on the floor below. It was not very clear what the difference was. Some stands such as the Virtual College apparently booked too late for the upper floor. Media Training were part of the Technology show last year but they offer day courses so fitted better with Skills. The skills include XML and Flex though they still offer courses on Quark and InDesign. Print design and publishing are still an interest. It struck me that had a sudden flow of mud arrived at Olympia, a future archaeologist might have assumed that there were two levels of mud for different time zones of technology. Media Training represent a balance of media as currently supported ; Adobe on the next level may be seen as normal some time in the future. Enough fiction, I wonder if that will get past the fact checkers.

The Learning and Skills floor also included some training companies that had nothing to do with technology but offered personal development for managers and support for policy development. There was no obvious presence from business schools or universities except for conference facilities. The University for Industry had a large stand as LearnDirect, the trading name they are allowed to use. The word "university" is strongly protected in the UK. From some Twitter remarks I gather there were several people from the Open University at the conference but there was no stand at the show.

The guide to Learning Technologies had an introduction from Lord Puttnam that made a strong case for e-learning and was a solid launch for the event. However there was one theme that I would like to question. He claimed that while educational organisations have a concern to sustain the "moral" position of learning within society, there are also the commercial ambitions of the Murdochs, the Microsofts or the Googles. As Chancellor of the Open University he has a proper concern with this but I think things could be more complicated. Commercial organisations make different claims for their knowledge offers. James Murdoch somehow connects media for democracy and a free market. Google claims a role in organisaing information and scanning content for public benefit. Both claims are contested but there is some sort of moral position.

Also there could be a downside for educational organisations to behave as if morality always demands a distance from commerce. I am interested in "mode two" knowledge, combining academic disciplines in practical situations. Most e-learning research could be seen as like this. I have heard tell of views on the "dark side" of mode two though I cannot find any detail or references.

Two events are coming up that may shed some light on this.

A Higher Education Leadership Summit will have a technology showcase during lunch. Not the scale of Learning Technologies but the issues may be similar. If universities have a different moral basis to most organisations, how will this show up in the conclusions? In Lancaster there will be a workshop on innovation as part of a conversation about experimentality. The description of a future conference includes the claim that the idea of the experiment has helped to "shape the contemporary world of evidence-based policy, clinical trials and audits".
Driven by pervasive informationalisation, we can observe a number of interlinked trends, including: the acceleration and proliferation of feedback loops between action and reaction; the displacement of fixed structures by networks and dissipative structures; the abandonment of fixed goals for continuous repositioning; and the carrying out of knowledge-work in the context of application.

My concern is that the moral case for universities may be seen as depending on distance from application. There are claims for the value of funding for research. In the case of e-learning contributions come from various sources.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Trade Show in Web Context (part two)

On my blog about reading the Guardian I have concluded that the Media page has it about right for last week. The Microsoft keynote at the Consumer Electronics show was not the main event. Google phone captured mindshare perhaps because the cloud apps that already exist make it easier to understand. Apple speculation continues.

Meanwhile the printed version of Printweek has not got the website news about Positive Focus. If the web story about liquidation is true I think this is alarming for the UK print industry so close to IPEX. If there is not an effective demand for workflow and web software what else is going to happen? Another comment by Kelvin Bell from vpress suggests that web software companies do not need to be there. The point is they can explain the offer online. Apple were not at drupa. No sign of Adobe on the floorplan so far. There is an online context for trade shows, however large they are.

Also time travel seems to be in order. The next CES exists as Twitter. IPEX has effectively started.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

I have done a post on the drupa blog about the Google Launch of the Nexus One phone and the Flash support for this. Seems very impressive.

Problem for IPEX is the range of phases of technology to consider. I think most print organisations are interested in Postscript. Adobe see this as a static market, not worth much promotion at all. There will be some PDF based workflow but no Adobe stand as far as I can tell from the floorplan. The PDF / XML phase relates to screens as well as hard copy. People in print organisations can relate to this and Adobe on e-books is reported in Printweek. But the Flash phase is still a bit strange. The thing is that print needs to present workflow as convenient for customers as publishing online through XML. Also print to complement the Flash options on mobiles. This requires more engagement with technology as a context. The layout of IPEX suggests that some print buyers may start at the HP end of the arc and maybe not get much further.

While checking the Printweek link I discover that Positive Focus has ceased trading. This is very disturbing. They were at the centre of pre-press technology. What is meant by "pre-media"? There must be some development somewhere but it may need a wide scope to find the current positives.

The floorplan shows a "knowledge area" near the pre-media, drupa 2012 near Heidelberg and Xerox, Printweek near Komori, and Print City near manroland. There are probably some online tags for these as well as the spread in real space. I think the show may as well start now for comments. BETT is next week and the same issues will come up. There may well be book publishers there still thinking about mobile devices and actually concentrating on contracts with libraries. The learners are the ones who but phones, whatever the age is.

I still plan to do stories for OhmyNews based on the actual event but meanwhile there may be events that offer a lead item to raise some issues. Adobe will be at BETT so what is their offer? Clues may appear even if they do rave on about Flash in a way mysterious for most of us in the UK. Maybe this is just me and I do try to keep an open mind. Adobe again at the Learning Technology part of Olympia. why not hold this alongside BETT?

The London Bookfair will probably have a tech zone for e-books etc. This could indicate what "pre-media" means. The XML space at Online Information was about publishing workflow for organisations. There was a brief Adobe presence but the approach to e-books is rarely explained.

manroland / Print City and Heidelberg will open the event with statements about how litho compares with digital. Xerox seem very close to Heidelberg, maybe there is a joint workflow possibility as mentioned previously. The Guardian and Haymarket are both covering UK media news and both moving online. The Technology section from the Guardian and also Direct Marketing both went from print in 2009. What will happen before May?

Events and blog posts will be examined in the future by archivists and media archaeologists. Apparently chronology and what makes an event are open for discussion. So blog posts in random order over 2010 may be as good a way as any to cover IPEX. No plan to change the name of the blog from 2002.