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Adobe--Life in the PDF Lane

February 1999
With PostScript 3, PDF and PostScript Extreme delivering on their promises to facilitate faster print production, visionaries at Adobe are casting their view to PDF refinements—and uncovering the next great print production performer.


BY MARIE RANOIA ALONSO


The introduction of PostScript placed Adobe Systems at the center of a growing web of desktop publishing solution providers. With the launch of Adobe's PostScript Extreme architecture and the rise of PDF, now, more than ever, Adobe is standing at center stage.

What are Adobe's star qualities?

  • Originally designed to demonstrate that PostScript could be imaged at or above engine speeds, Adobe PostScript Extreme expanded its high-volume printing capabilities in 1996 to enable distributed rendering across multiple CPUs.

  • In September 1998, Adobe launched Adobe PostScript Extreme for the graphic arts, adding workflow automation of prepress tasks to its earlier version.

  • Integral to the Adobe PostScript Extreme architecture is the concept of separating job control from job content. The Portable Job Ticket Format (PJTF) is embedded in the PDF file, allowing operators to suspend, correct and rerun a page without having to rework the entire job.


For insight into the future of production printing processes, Printing Impressions recently asked Adobe's Tricia Gellman, product marketing manager, and Jess Walker, product manager, to give an overview of the projects they have been refining. Guess what? There's a whole lot more than just PDF going on inside of Adobe. See for yourself. The following conversation between Printing Impressions and Adobe's technologists touches on more than PDF.

PI: This past year we saw the introduction of Adobe Extreme for the GA and production printer. What exactly is Adobe Extreme?

Adobe's Gellman: "Adobe Extreme is an integrated, flexible printing architecture developed to streamline prepress and production workflows. In developing Extreme, we worked from the position that prepress houses have a single location where jobs enter the production cycle. At that point, a job ticket is attached so that all prepress tasks can be automated based on the job ticket information.

"Tasks such as trapping, imposition and color correction can all be handled by the PJTF and, since the files are translated into Adobe PDF, the file can easily be based from one task to another.

"Extreme supports not only the workflow leading up to rendering, but also a very sophisticated way to render files, allowing for the distribution of multiple RIPs to attain or beat engine speeds. All of this is integrated so the beginning of the system knows what is happening on the back end, creating a very efficient and productive workflow."
 

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