Do You Speak Image?
Two things struck me at this event. First was how different Canon is than the other companies playing in the print industry today. The company is all about the image, regardless of how it's captured. And the company focuses on optimizing and producing these images in every way possible.
The second takeaway is the idea of images as information. All-digital-all-the-time images can go in any direction on a host of different media. Some will never land on a page, existing in purely digital form on 3D imaging systems or pixel-rich screens, while others will be printed on monochrome and color printers of all sizes and types. And Canon naturally showed support for printing a huge range of images, no matter how they are captured.
Of course, Canon's competitors in the printing world are also pretty savvy when it comes to images and information, offering up a host of amazing and innovative technologies. Market leadership is going to be a fascinating battle to watch. Yet it's the buyers and users of all the technology who stand to benefit. In this digital age, the craftsmanship that once drove press output has moved back upstream to the image creator. This is a good thing, in my opinion, and it enables print providers to leverage the software and print engines--no matter who makes them--to support the integration of images and information. The ones that do this best will be the market leaders.