Océ Writes the Book on Digital Printing with ‘Roll Over Gutenberg’
TRUMBULL, CT/DÜSSELDORF, GERMANY—May 30, 2008—Océ, an international leader in digital document management and delivery, announced that it will produce a fully-finished mixed black & white and color book live at the Océ drupa 2008 stand. The book, “Roll Over Gutenberg,” relates the fascinating history of books through the ages, chronicling the past, present and future of the book and the book industry.
The book illustrates milestones in printing, paper manufacture and publishing, exploring the changing book publishing business model. It traces the development of technologies that have driven the evolution of the book market, and resulting social and commercial implications. “Roll Over Gutenberg” examines traditional book printing and publishing models, highlighting how book printers, publishers and retailers are leveraging digital technology to rewrite the rules of book printing and publishing.
In the mid 1400s, an inventive German by the name of Johannes Gutenberg introduced a disruptive technology that displaced the existing practices of hand-copying and woodblock printing. With his revolutionary invention, “movable type”, text could be infinitely replicated, enabling the mass production of books. Before Gutenberg, only the elite, wealthy and scholarly had access to reading materials. With the ability to produce books in mass quantities, prices dropped dramatically and books became accessible to the masses, igniting a social, cultural and scientific revolution.
Fast-forward just over 500 years. Today, digital book printing technologies are revolutionizing the book supply chain once again. Today, companies like Océ offer a varied portfolio of advanced digital printing systems that bring more color, speed, and efficiency to the world of printing. Just as Gutenberg’s press enabled the mass production of books, digital technology is transforming the traditional book printing and publishing business model. Océ Vice President of Graphic Arts, Peter Wolff, suggests that digital book printing changes the supply chain in three ways. It enables book lifecycle management, where runs alternate between offset and digital based on the stage of a title’s lifecycle. It enables books to be printed on demand (sell first, then print in a quantity of one) and in short runs (print first, then sell in smaller runs). And it eliminates the traditional value chain, specifically the inventory function of wholesalers.