CIP3 Comes Home
With new CIP3 members such as business-to-business Internet companies, one can only speculate as to how far-reaching the CIP3 initiative might actually evolve for the commercial printing industry.
In the case of Impresse, for example, the CIP3 commitment is apparent, as Impresse's Robert Chansler, R&D technologist and CIP3 expert, explains: "CIP3's Print Production Format was a valuable contribution to the industry, and Impresse supports that standard primarily by reliable transport of the PPF data. We are excited about the recent Job Definition Format initiative because this next-generation standard lets us add value by managing the procurement and commerce aspects of the commercial printing supply chain from the creative professional to the factory floor to invoice and delivery reconciliation."
What could the eventual direction of CIP3 be, with the addition of Web-based technology providers to the consortium? Internet to press? Internet to postpress? Print procurement to print delivery—fully automated functionality from the point before concept to the point after postpress? Invariably DRUPA 2000, and future DRUPAs, will offer a clearer view of CIP3 automated advancements and the willingness of commercial printing to embrace its inevitable, digital world.
PPF DRUPA Facts
The Print Production Format (PPF) is the specification developed by the CIP3 consortium that defines how an organization passes production data from prepress to press to postpress.
Launched at DRUPA 1995, the PPF is a standard machine language that has been embraced in digital workflows by Adobe, Agfa, Barco, Creo, Heidelberg Prepress, Scitex, Screen and other digital workflow providers.
With the PPF, ink key settings on the press can be handled automatically using data downloaded from RIPed files. The goal: Use prepress automation to allow a print job to speak in one voice, digitally, from prepress to the pressroom and, ultimately, the bindery.
PPF files are generated as early as possible in the life cycle of a print job. Along with information such as the client's name and address, the print job's name and the applications used to create the data for the print job, the PPF contains as much information about the job as possible—from format size to inks and finishing information.