GRAPH EXPO & CONVERTING EXPO 2003--Prepress and Digital Printin
Creo's Michelson asserts that 90 percent of the value of JDF integration can come from implementing just 10 to 20 percent of the specification. Once the critical "touch points" of integration for various processes are identified, he says they can be used to develop subsets of the JDF specification (or NGP interfaces) that make it practical to implement, while maximizing the gains in print production efficiency.
The sheer size and daunting scope of the JDF specification was repeatedly made reference to at GRAPH EXPO. The officially published specification and documentation runs a hefty 564 pages, but the current working version reportedly tops 700 pages.
Walking the Talk
According to Michelson, NGP compliance simply represents a level of proven interoperability beyond that ensured by the broader parameters of JDF compliance. All of the partners are said to have committed to developing each of the relevant integration points agreed upon for JDF-based interfaces. Each NGP solution will be tested and certified to ensure that it meets the original integration goal. The group is looking to appoint an independent organization to do the certification.
While the group's intent is to simplify the work involved in achieving interoperability, Michelson was asked if getting that number of companies to reach agreement on the structure of the interfaces wasn't itself going to be a daunting task. "It will be a long process, but you have to start somewhere," he contends.
The group has established a Website (www.ngppartners.org) to keep the industry abreast of its progress.
Given the number of announcements about new business relationships it made at the show, Electronics For Imaging (EFI) seems to be pursuing a mini integration initiative of its own. Some of the deals involve EFI's products and technologies, others pertain to Printcafe, and a few encompass both.
Presstek is going to offer EFI's Velocity OneFlow bundled with its Dimension series of CTP systems, while Mitsubishi Imaging showcased a similar combination on an informal basis. Xerox plans to integrate Velocity Balance into its DigiPath/FreeFlow workflow solution. Kodak Polychrome Graphics (KPG) is selling Velocity OneFlow as a front end for its new KPG DirectPress 5034 DI digital color press. Enovation Graphic Systems plans to offer Velocity Balance and the Fiery EXP6000 server as part of the front-end package for the Xerox 6060 digital color presses it now distributes.
- Adobe Systems
- Agfa Graphics
- CGS Publishing Technologies
- DALiM Software
- DiMS! organizing print
- DuPont Imaging Technologies
- Eastman Kodak
- Enfocus Software
- Epson America
- FUJIFILM Graphic Systems Div.
- KBA North America
- manroland Inc.
- Muller Martini
- Presstek Inc.
- PRIMAC Systems, Vercom Software
- Radius Solutions
- Streamline Solutions
- Xerox Corp.