Friday, December 19, 2008

Is Adobe in a cloud?

More on this next year. My impression of the recent statements is that Adobe seems to be concentrating on income from upgrades for Creative Suite. Not much about cloud computing. This explains why Adobe is rarely mentioned in stories about the Cloud.

The business model could be very different.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Printweek webcast, a new era in magazines

The webcast was actually a couple of days ago. I was looking forward to it and made a special trip to LifeBytes to make sure of adequate bandwidth. Unfortunately my experience was that the site just stopped on page one. Turns out this was a Firefox problem. "Works best with Internet Explorer" was dropped as a phrase into the Printweek report. There is your clue. They should have said "We don't support Firefox" right up front. May be just me of course. But suggest you try the Microsoft site for copy of IE before trying the first Printweek webcast.

Unless you are concerned about security. In which case, check the blogs first for recent information.

Anyway, back on topic.

The webcast is full of useful information on Web-to-Print. Well worth 50 minutes time for anyone working in print or publishing. I will come back to the content later. Meanwhile a few main points-

No mention at all of the Job Definition Format (JDF) . I have spoken to several coders who say their systems are compliant with XML but often not the JDF spec. There is no sign of Adobe promoting the features in Acrobat that allow JDF to be created. So maybe the way forward is to mention "Web-To-Print" as sales talk and then worry about JDF when the job reaches production. Long ago the "enquiries" from print reps often had to be rewritten to make any kind of production sense. Maybe the role of JDF in a computerised workflow is much the same.

Similarly I think that Software as a Service(SAS) is not that easy to understand. Later in the webcast there is mention of The Cloud. Sounds a lot simpler.

Main takeaway is that this a breakthrough for Printweek and Haymarket. The question is what will they do next about the print / online mix for magazines? Apparently there is a generation under 26 where interest in print is quite low. So the suggestion is to advertise print to an older generation through Saga magazine. I am not making this up, listen to the whole webcast for details. Nothing against Saga magazine by the way. They feature stories about Prince and other artists I follow.

But what about the future media for people who read Printweek?

Sunday, December 14, 2008

web-to-print from drupa to Haymarket

Tomorrow there will be a webcast from Printweek all about web-to-print. Chaired by Matt Whipp, the editor of

So the Web is now seen as something in the service of print. It can result in orders for service providers and is also part of the publishing mix. How very sensible, but it seems to have taken rather a long time to reach this level of acceptance.

Reports from drupa earlier this year did not emphaise the web-to-print claims coming from the innovation parc. There is still an interest in the big metal machinery. Perhaps in the context of 500 years of more or less the same approach a few months is not of much weight. There is still time for 2008 to be recorded as the "web-to-print" drupa. See OhmyNews for example. "I stand by my story" says blogger.

I think the interesting aspect will be how far Haymarket moves towards the Web with titles other than Printweek. I still find the branding quite confusing. Brand Republic is a website but Revolution is a magazine in print like Marketing, direct mail and various other words. Eventually there could be an online brand that is recognised directly from promotional print.

On 5 December there was a Printweek interview with Felix Dennis of Butler, Tanner and Dennis. He was asked if print will be around for another 100 years? He avoided a direct answer but if the question is about whether the Web is now part of the mix the answer is probably yes. A Printweek webcast is as close as needs be to a defining event.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Online Information, see Exetreme blog

I will be at Online Information this week.

Posts mostly to the Exetreme blog as this is on my card.

Cards by Moo by the way. Last year this is mostly what I was asked about.