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Show Review--Delivering On-demand

April 2000
Digital printing is finally well beyond concept acceptance, as On Demand proved last month. New moves in on-press imaging and color server technologies—and the Internet—are delivering on the promise of digital printing.


BY MARIE RANOIA ALONSO


Given the impossible-to-ignore high velocity of the Internet as it targets multiple areas of the print production process lately, it is no surprise that the Internet is also targeting the time-sensitive profit center that is on-demand digital printing.

True to current form, the dotcom emphasis at On Demand in New York was staggering, but not surprising—new online solutions for on-demand document fulfillment, new Internet tools for the on-demand supply chain and new activities from the likes of Kinko's that position the Internet firmly in demand of on-demand printing.

Still, although pivotal at On Demand, the Internet was not the only talk at the Big Apple show. The show also marked the first public demonstrations of a new, elite generation of digital color sheet- and web-fed presses, with new devices on display from Heidelberg, Indigo, Xeikon and Xerox, as well as new innovations in on-demand color servers, notably an intriguing new launch by Scitex, and variable data software solutions, plus an array of front end technologies for streamlined workflows leading to on-demand finishing devices.

But first, the Internet . . .

E-News
ImageX.com, a business-to-business Internet solution for printed business materials, unveiled PrintPlace.com, an online vertical marketplace that provides content, community and commerce for the graphic arts. PrintPlace.com offers a new marketplace designed to serve buyers and sellers of print, prepress, paper and graphic design products and services. The paper industry is currently the area in which ImageX.com participates. PrintPlace.com is designed to provide supply chain value all the way from buyers and sellers to suppliers within the entire graphic arts industry. This marketplace offers complete functionality for procurement, print management, bidding services, auctions and workflow management systems. PrintPlace.com also offers a full range of content, news and industry links to help facilitate the full-service needs required throughout the industry.

MediaFlex.com, a provider of e-commerce solutions for the digital printing industry, announced a worldwide agreement with Sir Speedy. Under the terms of this agreement, Sir Speedy franchises will have the ability to provide customized, Web-based document ordering and fulfillment services to their major account customers using MediaFlex.com's online solutions. MediaFlex.com's e-commerce solutions allow Sir Speedy franchises to manage, distribute and fulfill on-demand print orders, providing cost savings and better customer service via the Internet. Sir Speedy chose MediaFlex.com for its customized order entry, document management and fulfillment capabilities.

 

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