CIP4 Releases PrintTalk 1.5 Specification for Print Industry eCommerce Automation
ZURICH—July 14, 2015—The International Cooperation for the Integration of Processes in Prepress, Press and Postpress (CIP4) organization announced the release of the PrintTalk 1.5 Schema and Reference Implementation. PrintTalk is a specification for the exchange of print eCommerce information that is useful for the exchange of data between customer systems, Web-to-print eCommerce systems and print estimating, scheduling and MIS. Version 1.5 of PrintTalk is tightly integrated with the 1.5 version of JDF that was released several months ago.
First demonstrated in 2000, PrintTalk is an 'envelope' for JDF; the business information is PrintTalk, and the product description within is JDF. PrintTalk specifies an automation framework for a myriad of print buying transactions, such as requests for estimates, estimates, approvals and more. The early cooperation with CIP4 ensured that data gathered in the print buying process could be moved forward into production via JDF, thereby directly linking a print buyer's intent with production, and eliminating the need for the re-keying of critical job parameters.
"Extending the convenience and efficiency of automation to the customer is a priority for most printers," said CIP4 CEO, Henny van Esch. "JDF automates print manufacturing. PrintTalk then extends the process automation to both the customer and to the supply chain of that service provider. Smaller printers are requiring that elements of PrintTalk be incorporated into pre-packaged Web storefronts, while the larger ones include PrintTalk in sophisticated self-developed Web portals."
Heidelberger Druckmaschinen is one CIP4 member that has also made use of PrintTalk to enable its Web-to-print solutions. "Prinect, the print shop and media workflow of Heidelberger Druckmaschinen, is based on open industry standards. JDF and PDF are certainly the largest elements," remarked Christopher Berti, vice president, Prinect, Heidelberg. "PrintTalk has also been a valued element of our Prinect solutions since 2002, and is becoming more and more important with the growth of Web-to-print. Whereas JDF helps to automate the production workflow, PrintTalk accelerates the business processes and cash flow."
PrintTalk 1.5 adds requested capabilities to subscribe to order-status updates, request stock levels, support for multiple JDF items on the same order (Bill of Materials), and manage percentage calculations on invoices. CIP4 has developed this update to complement JDF 1.5, but PrintTalk is also backward-compatible.
PrintTalk and JDF are the open standards for process automation in the print industry. They may be freely incorporated by companies or individual developers to meet the needs of today, and provide the flexibility to address future opportunities. For more information about Print Talk please visit: www.PrintTalk.org.
For additional questions about PrintTalk 1.5 specification and technical details, please contact CIP4's Technical Officer Rainer Prosi of Heidelberg, at email@example.com.
CIP4 brings together vendors, consultants and end-users in the print communications, graphic arts industry, and associated sectors, covering a variety of equipment, software, peripherals and processes. Members participate in focused working groups to define the Job Definition Format (JDF), PrintTalk and other standards relevant to process automation. Members also study user requirements, test product interoperability, and develop a range of JDF software development tools, as well as educational resources.
The Job Definition Format (JDF) is the industry specification designed to facilitate process automation and the integration of different applications and systems in and around the graphic arts industry. Widely adopted and recognized worldwide as a key industry standard, JDF also enables the integration of business management and job planning applications into the production workflow. JDF is based on the W3C's Extensible Markup Language (XML), ensuring maximum interoperability between different platforms and ready interaction with Internet systems.