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CIP3--Enabling the Digital Journey

August 1998

"Harlequin has been involved in CIP3 from the beginning and remains committed to providing enabling technologies that allow our OEM partners to provide customer solutions that embody the CIP3 specification," Masia continues.

"The CIP3 PPF is already a very robust and expressive format with tremendous promise for end-user benefit."

CIP3 Q&A With Harlequin's Andrew Masia

Andrew Masia is director of product marketing, Harlequin Digital Printing and Publishing

Q: Why has Harlequin been an ardent supporter of CIP3?

A: Harlequin has always supported industry standards and open systems. CIP3 is important in this regard because it provides a language that enables the integration of press and finishing operations with the wide variety of automated prepress systems represented by Harlequin's 50 OEMs. Because this integration depends on the ability of hardware and software from many different vendors to work together, industry standard languages, interfaces and protocols are critical.

Q: Are there types of workflows that lend themselves to CIP3?

A: Those end users who have integrated imposition into their electronic prepress systems will be the first to make full use of applications that embody these emerging standards. For example, in order to automate the setting of ink keys, the CIP3 file must represent the entire printing form, and not just an individual page.

Q: Are imposed workflows the ones best suited to CIP3?

A: No. The CIP3 consortium has deliberately avoided specifying how a PPF file is to be used in a workflow. To do so would significantly limit its usefulness in real-world environments. The CIP3 file itself contains information about the printing form that can be used in a wide variety of ways that might differ from shop to shop.

In fact, the results of field trials of products designed to process PPF files by a number of CIP3 members have proven the file design to be robust and complete, and allow it to be used in a wide variety of ways.

How can users begin to do CIP3? Start by examining the workflow currently in use— and ask yourself where information is being recalculated.

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