Žiljak Vilko

Abstract :

The future of the printing, publishing and media communication is in e-dealings - digital services and management connected by a digital network. The complete dealings are a network throughput. Attempts are made at organizing an electronic business association. Dealings function as virtual offices. All components of print production become interactive services. The printing industry of the future comprises digital integration of all workflows: prepress, press and postpress, standardization, production control using relation and native databases, and in the personnel section continuous training called "life-long learning" should be implemented.

Keywords : Networking,Printing,Workflow,XML, Internet, JDF

1 Introduction

The romantic times of the printing industry and closed guild behaviour has remained something we know about only on basis of anecdotes. Electronic publishing has been accepted everywhere in the printing industry and has become part of a person's general education. With the help of informatic technology there is an increase of a printed product's value and the product is undergoing many mutations, becoming more interesting, unique, individual. Basic e-definitions of printing are redefined: the original copy, color, media on which a product is printed on, the bearers of printed form. The news in the printing industry means "informatic integration" of all printing and publishing matters, those of actual graphic product production, including Internet technology. Printing works have not been using databases up to the time electronic newspaper editions were implemented, a parralel campaign of all the publishers. Appearance of electronic book and magazine editions is still in the phase of copying graphic layout of a printed book in PDF(*) and HTML formatting levels. The most valuable points such as links with other publishing programs and browsers are still missing. The so-called linking is on the level of browsing within the same publication or finally as a supplement to literature.General integration within printing is implementd from a totally technical point of view. The standartization of linking printing machines, the production process and process automation is being organized. Machine producers have enforced this gathering around the CIP4 movement in order to make a considerable improvement in the level of machine exploiting during the printing process. A new informatic language called XML has been created in the meantime, as well as many of its sattelites, such as XSL and DOM. Each field of business had to make its own expert dictionary and rules for use in order to understand the machines, relations in relation databases, inside and outside information flow. The printing language called JDF was created and is undergoing a major development process, still far from standards, and is the most important point in the graphic industry of today. This may be comprehended from the fact that JDF is in the titles of all subjects on development of printing. The elements in the printing industry development are set by the users accepting knowledge and the choice to introduce modern technology based on the XML communication system. Printing works will go through internal reorganization beginning with cretaing digital standards for all activities, business deals, machine de scriptions, material descriptions. This cannot be forced as a ready-made solution, but will be the result of joint efforts of computer experts, printers and printing engineers. A standard digital system must be implemented so as to move closer to production planning standardization, offer standartization, job order standardization, and optimal use of new printing technologies.

Relation databases are linked through methods of "natural" XML databases organization in all business fields, thus in the printing industry as well. In order to enable communication between various participants in printing business, and most of all this applies to publishers, a native digital printing language must be created. At a first glance XML is extremely simple and because of this it has undergone a wave of mass exploting, by a vast number of new programmers and an infinitive number of solutions have been offered. However, it is high time that a graphic business center is organized in Croatia as well, which would elaborate a dictionary of digital printing activities also covering segments and links. Due to the fact that a specific technical dictionary is developed for each machine in a printing works describing variables, work processes, communication hierarchy, a new chapter is a language for translating all of this in order to understand different elements comprised in processses such as planning, control, production technology and many many others. The world center or the CIP consortium has this job; to coordinate the global printing industry language and native printing industry communication languages, with the goal being general standartization The future of the technological segment is seen in applying hybrid printing. All by itself this word would not mean anything important if there had not been the necessary integration of digital and conventional publishing giving optimal results in many areas. Digital printing has offered sequence printing, i.e a printed form is formed in real printing time, enabling the printing of page after page and is leading to the possibilities of each printed product being individualized. As computer speed is developing, the RIP process will be carried out before applying ink to substrate. The development of many modern printing areas has been made possible by these digital means of controlling the actual printing process.Individualization is, therefore, forcing itself as a really possible marketing novice with new solutions in design, but most important: in production planning. CIP4 will flourish here. The printing machine as a central point of action in the printing process will not only perform sequence printing of the same product.

But also a combined printing of various products in a continual printing process. Linking of machines for arranging the products, bending, cutting and binding in the CIP3 system enables a multi-pole applying of the printing work without fear that everything would be mixed up. The change of material at the process entering point is programmed for i.e. a whole day digital production plan. In simple terms, adjusting the machines for bending, cutting and other postpress jobs is controlled on basis of information and data travelling together with the printed sheet. Thoughts on printing simultaneously various printed matter parts is the beginning of accepting CIP4 standards. This paper sets forth the question whether human engagement is necessary. The printing works requires fresh knowledge, new skills, urgent retraining. The education system is undergoing adaptation and preparing to educate experts for the oncoming printing industry transformations.

2. Digital networking of printing

The entire field of printing science and industry function as an electronic business association. The turning point is the acceptance of Internet and its power. The Internet is not only a pile of information but is also a vast market, and a new way of market opening. Fundamental changes in the printing industry affect production cycles, price structure, industrial services. It is a matter of significance that a job can be executed through the net. The job may comprise of the following: promotion, negotiations, tenders, decision making, ordering, carrying out digital transactions, payment, delivery planning. It is necessary to make the first step, and be aware of the need of business reorganization. Informatic infrastructure has proven to be effective in the printing industry from the beginning of this century.

2.1. Software and hardware in printing industry

The printing industry has accepted network automationand the Internet and is undergoing continuous transformation. Nothing remains the same. The printing business is preparing for changes in all its segments depending on the fact how and to what extent certain plants are envolved in digital control. Terms like: soft printing environment, hard printing environment, a mixed printing environment and a supersoft printing environment would be applied. The last one is related to the Internet, the Web, database, computer memory) workflow control and printing works control through virtual simmulation of production. Soft plants like for instance those for prepress will be altered completely every two years. Communications - the supersoft printing technology - will be altered each year. The harder printing structure depends directly on the development of computer integration with the printing industry and depends most of all on implementing standartization in printing. It seemed that postpress, let us lable it as a mixed printing environment, will not be altered at this exponential rate. The wish to link all workflows into a singlče informatic unit, has made the postpress machine producers develop many new patents. Their derivates are multiplying, spreading and duplicating every 18 months, at the speed of computer development, because automation is implemented here.

2.2. The correlation between computer development and the advances in printing

In previous papers on the correlation between the situation of the computer technique and prepress and the introduction of automation into conventional printing, it has been proven that discussion is possible only in the light of exponential development. Digital printing has begun from scratch - printers that have undergone general alterations in the eighties by implementing the PostScript, the language having the pretension to become the printing industry standard. This paper will try to forecast what will happen in the next fifteen years, a period during which we all will be active users of printed products, the printing technique and training in the printing industry.
If science, discoveries and patents on which the listed variables are based upon have been behaving in such a determined exponential manner during the past twenty years, one must believe that the same parameters will remain in the time to come. The future development is undergoing discussion with the following question being stressed: in how many months shall we be facing a value double in size for each variable? Doubling occurs in 21 months when the computer memory is monitored, 27 months when computer speed is surveyed, 16 months for the discs and only 13 months for Web-Internet application (www.pira.co.uk "Five YearTechnology Forecast of Printing and Publishing" - Pira International, data is updated with the Network Wizard www.nw.com "Internet domain survey" www.isc.org/ds/host-count-history.html). The following relations are suggested here (see left column): rasta onih varijabli koje bi trebale in which for the X = 0 variable Y gives the value of the number of Web-host computers in the world in the year 2000. The relation is data approximization from the year 1981 (X = -19) till 2002 (X = 2). On basis of this we have the result that the Web system is multiplying by ten times in the space of three and a half years. If we were to place the possible changes and implementation of the Internet in the printing industry within the same relation, the conclusion is that there should be speedy preparations for the grahics system reorganization. If three and a half years is the minimum time necessary to educate a graphics engineer, then we are facing the task to interfere in a major way as to the manner graphics technology is studied.

 On basis of studying many reports on the future of computer science systems in the printing industry, correlations are established in respect to computer machine development. Studies are aiming at helping in business strategy planning in a responsible and safe manner. (Confidently accurately. The Future of Print 2, ISBN 1 85 802 9414 , Pira International Ltd.).

Data on many essential points determing the printing industry, the opinion of experts and their original reports are used in creating the development and innovation implementation scenario. Minor, mean and highly developed scenarios for the future are set. This paper would offer some critisizm and reservedness in respect to such reports. If observed from contemporary standings, articles and papers dating a few years back were more than modest. The forecasts for digital printing patents development had given twice the time lapse in which this would occur. XML (1) technology had not been stressed anywhere, nor the new language in the printing idustry JDF (2). It is similar as to the standing of the most competant architects of the printing industry development scenario. In a few words, the general opinion is that the future will be developing in a linear and not an exponential manner. We have here the growth relations of those variables that should be the fundamental basis for reconsidering many of the printing industry parameters: the Internet, computer memory, external storage - discs, computer speed.

This is a bold prognosis based on the area of dataextrapolation 20 years back in time. Maybe it is incredible,but activities in the printing industry are in full correlation with computer development. Figures should be considered in logarithmic transformation. Lead typesetting has being going until twenty years back, whereas computer implementation into this field began only with the photographic matter in the 20th century's seventies. The equipment was extremely expensive and only the newspaper industry could be the leading field of business for applying all new computer science technologies. Computer power has enabled only text processing. Digital scanners have been implemented gradually into photoreproduction departments and full exchange of previous technologies has become a practice only ten years ago. People were waiting for the speed of computer image processing and access availability to corresponding memories to become competetive with the analogue and digital techniques. In theory many applications have been developed earlier, while the good results with computer graphics functioned on the main forms with computers that could not be transferred to printing plants. All such things as computer annimation, multimedia, sound, has been shown as far back as thirty years ago, but was at that time a matter of art and exclusive application. We have been waiting for the "mammoth computers" of those times to become personal computers for general use, available to all, without being a threat to the standard of living. Nothing is definite in the printing industry but nothing will be as it has been. The development of computer science continues and according to all the coefficients this is taking place exponentially. It will be seen in opening of new transformation and phases of change in the printing industry: the Internet, digital image transfer, digital control of production and planning; the path towards communication technology is set in order to fully integrate publishers, customers, printing processes, paper production, sales. During symposiums held worldwide there are often polemics on how there will be no exponential computer science development in future, and therefore - no drastic changes in the printing production. This is generally the viewpoint of the older generations, whereas the young generations are consciously preparing for new alterations. The most important subject is the JDF as the printing production language, as one of the XML technology schemes, as something that is integrated into the chain, beginning from the publisher all theway to the customer and digital and conventional literature.

3. Languages of the 21st century printing

New lines of thought, new programmers and new types of jobs are organized at the same speed that hardware is developing. The extraordinary HTML that has promoted the Internet more than anything does not enable explosive implementation of ideas of display on the most various media, complex transformation and entering into various databases. The HTML's graphic design has two integrated subjects: data source and the planned Web site. New technology bearing the common name XML has advanced further and is based on several premises:

The First: data and data structure are separated from the physical display programming and an edited report design. Data is described - marked - in an understandable language, in detail, with the text being in the mother tongue. Thus matter identification is simplified and the exploiting by various users for various purposes is made possible. The prepress up to printing plated production has the path towards the electronic edition, searching, rearrangement of page layout, adaptation of the page layout to the end user's needs. XML's conception of data being separated from the display simplifies the matter of the "digital kiosk", remote printing, printing on basis of content choice, individualized printing.

The Second: Through the Internet technology one enters simultaneously into various databases, various data files and various sources, thus forming a unique XML structure. This is where native data bases are begun for a typical XML structure. The matter of software and hardware compatibility are avoided. Independence as to the computer type and operative system is at maximum and very stressed. Databases are entered from anyplace, anytime.

The Third: Instrumental data are manipulated together with other data from databases, as for instance production planning and control data. Such data circulation is interactive production control; machine regime altering, work process parameter adjustment for omptimizing purposes. Internet technology enables remote data reading of parameters on various device for the purpose of informing in real time.

The Fourth: A dictionary is the the beginning of standardsetting. XML technology requires organization of a communication expert dictionary. The printing industry has begun the designing of a JDF industrial standard language for its own purpose. On basis of a print production dictionary, a path for drawing together production organizing methods has been set, as well as for calculation, warehouse control, use of all the machines in a printing works. When applied in printing jobs, Internet technology must rely on a language that is independent from the machine producer and the end user in the printing works. A dictionary is the beginning of serious cooperation between the competitors with the common goal to improve all the parameters of the print production. Integration through a new printing dictionary is becoming reality. The position of a native tongue is stressed and this would also be a warning that fundamental education is necessary in respect to new standards announced through JDF and CIP4.

3.1. Data exchange between machines

JDF comprises the complete printing job of publishing, beginning from the author, design and ending with the placement through the network digital system under XML technology. There is no mention of conventional printing, digital printing, alternative or hybrid printing. Everything is united into general printing that has a goal to produce competitive graphic products. The JDF system covers the complete production process. Let's define the workflow as automation of job processes in whole or in segments, during which documents, information or jobs are passed on from one participant to the other for the following job. The use of digital relation databases and XML technology is understood as those relative for the JDF environment. A participator is understood to be any resource, man as well as machine. Workflow tools enable automation of controlling either wholes or segments of the process, an advanced carrying out of tasks according to known rules defined in advance.

3.2. Databases and Digital Printing

A computer science based society relies on databases, science bases, eLearning, the Internet. Digital printing followed by the whole printing industry has found its area of spreading in such an environment. Informatization must comprise individuality as well: databases on potential customers grouped in respect to their tastes, needs, income scale. Databases on new, future and old products. Databases on printing technologies and material. Databases on designer solutions and the designers themselves. Databases on companies, their logos, favourite products, success reports. Databases on production standards, prices, exploitation conditions, the borderlins for operation of each machine in the printing industry. All this is data in the relative ba ses that are being the source for making prints with individualized characteristics. This is where the proposal for implementing XML technology into the printing business is set: databases and digital printing. Communication: only through XML technology, whether we are in the printing works grounds or connecting with the outside world as well. Digital printing is the incubator for a new and serious world of printing technology that is constantly spreading. Furthermore, networked printing works is the basis for discussion about the changes taking place in the printing industry. Network production is the main subject for a modern production organization and it affects investments, education, management. A network is not only an independent area in the printing industry but through databases it integrates a new printing industry life. What is flowing through a network? What kind of data? Is it only information printed on paper or is it information on production technology and production control. Printers in a printing works did not deal with computers previously, and now such technology will become the center of their thoughts. XML technology enables information to be taken out of databases to diverse media and one such media is the printed product. XML may be understood only when one has performed implementation, programming and used tools for databases organization. In order to connect graphic prepress and XML technology it is necessary to apply XSL, XSL-TO procedures and to prepare graphic displays for various printing machines. XML does not require "a language in codes and abbreviations" understandable only to the programmer who becomes incompetent with such technology as well after a certain period of time. In first applications, especially in machine data manipulation, an English language basis is forced. As XML variablesmay be textual description, it is recommended to use native languages for marking. There will be wider and stronger motivation because of the more simple understanding of contents.

The first applications are textual XML native databases with XSL exits, data content change and printout. XML is an extremely simple recording, understandable, flexible and modular. The next is connecting with relative bases (MS SQL server, Access, Informix, Oracle).

Programmers tend to make a turn towards using Java, C++ and JavaScript languages. It is suggested to use these languages in the calculation area and data flow control.

3.3. Text and image graphic display

The prepress of today has problems with conversion of text on various computer platforms. The fonts and communication programs for production of plates are not adjusted and this problem is getting more and more prominent as computer techniques are developing. The development in the direction of contemporary and up-to-date programs for page layout has come to a stop because the complete prepress is turning towards XML technologies. XML programming plays an important role in the field of graphic products. XSLT (Extensible Stylesheet Transformations) is the most important central type of technology for processing and remodelling of XML ( eXtensible Markup Language) in prepress. Originally it was designed for forming of dynamic display of XML data pages. Now it can be discussed as a general purpose tool for translation and reorganization of documents of the same contents, and generating multiple results as for instance those for HTML, WAP and SVG forms. XSLT is the basis for display of many XML solutions. As a standard it sets the way of transforming XML documents into other XML formats, HTML and many other formats that we meet with Web technology. XSLT transforms the contents of an XML reading roughly generated in prepress from simple tabular displays up to complex sorting out, connecting and dynamic selecting.

With XML technology it is expected that the data is described, saved and transported through the Internet and the Web.The independence of XML data is the beginning of real communication between printers, printing works and publishers, publishers and work groups that are preparing images and texts, printers and image bases. This independence applies to printouts whether on their way to the CtP or for digital printing on some other location. The adaptation of machines to national requirements becomes unimportant, as each display, i.e. print-out is programmed independent of the original source.

XML solutions offer a new way of communication using various operation systems and computers. Due to the fact that diverse systems are integrated with XML technology more time is necessary for this project to be implemented because this technology does not give fast results.

In order to implement such a general transformation into graphic prepress the following is necessary:

- designing of special DTD tools production adapted to the graphic design
- a plan for converting the exsisting forms for organizing bases of ready layouts of graphic
- products into the XML standard data system;
- a project for browsers, filters, selectors and structures to display texts made in times of analog printing practice.

4. New specializing in the print production

There is specializing of some new fields in print production and this should be considered not only in respect the said area, but also in respect to the education system. The following work groups are suggested according to their general characteristics:

1. Organization of database structure for the print production. Development of forms for data input with the corresponding schemes. The development of personal "private" XML languages for personal activities.

2. The development of a mother tongue dictionary for the printing and publishing applicable in XML technology. Translator development for other mother tongues and other communication standards in graphic arts.

3. Interface development between XML and relation databases: MS SQL server, Oracle, Access, Informix, as there is need to use data from information systems that have been in use in this country. Connecting of data from the warehouse and financial business operations with the job order. Development of XML solutions with the goal being to substitute the existing relative databases.

4. The development of XSL, XSLT, XSL FO solutions for data display for the display monitor, PostScript, PDF.

5. XML scheme development for instrumentation specific for machines in the printing plant. Study of JDF characteristics, application and advice on new machines.

6. Application of XML and relative databases for graphic product production calculations, tender making for the end user and job order making.

7. Organizing picture albums, logotypes, layouts.

Organizing databases on printing techniques, material (paper, inks, toners, glues) with the corresponding work speed standards, prices and time necessary for individual job phases.

The reason for not having until now the application and designing of information systems in printing processes that comprise the actual production is because of the total lack of production standards. Each printing works developed individually for it's own market. This is illustrated best by the situation in getting a tender for a concrete job. The prices may vary from a relative range of 1 to 4, although the production technology may be almost identical, as well as the material and the staff having identical qualifications. The standards on calculation are most often in the hands of a single person, in his notes that are kept as a top business secret. The digital system of standards opens the path towards standardization. Prepress may be described with some twenty tables, Printing with the number of printing machines. The final or postpress jobs are described with several hundred complex relative structures even when a small printing works is in question. If this enormous number of standards is taken into account it is a wonder that a bigger difference has not appeared in planning the cost of a product. By following up and analyzing former successful jobs a "ready-made method" was developed resulting in the specialization of each individual printing works. Non-existence of printed standards and not using internal memos brings damage even to successful printing works. The following work groups: have been organized within the WbPoskok project printing production:

. Digital standards development for the prepress;

. Digital standards development for the press;

. Digital standards development for the postpress.

The standards are in the MS-SQL server and are available through developed DOM procedures. The calculators are in XML technology with JavaScript program support.
The first question to be posed when XML technology is planned to be applied for calculation making jobs is "At what speed are results obtained?". The speed is instantaneous but the more important question would be "Are the same standards really always applied?"


1. All the performed calculations are saved permanently.
Thus each calculation may be later used as the initial pattern for making a new offer.
2. The accepted offer is the basis for production planning and making the job order. Standards have the possibility of "hidden values" and this applies firstly to prices that are the data for concrete market activities.
3. The job order is cummulative with an alarm on the production phase state it applies to.
4. The database is linked with the data in the warehouse, the shipping department and those engaged in forming of commercial and financial reports that are usually successfully done with the help of conventional methods. The open and available to all data may be found at: http://webposkok.fotosoft.hr/kalkulacija.

5. Conclusion

Studies on the printing industry future are most often dealing with variables that usually do not have very significant changes as, for instance:
http://www.smartfactory.org/smart/presentations/PBeyer_DSFactory.pdf; paper consumption, participation of ads in newspapers, the quantity of new books, connections with new media, the rise of daily newspaper, magazine, brochure editions. Internal changes that are taking place in the printing industry are in respect to information flow, computer technique implementation, including new printing techniques, and this is what changes working habits, working places, communication between the publisher and the printer, and shortens the time necessary to publish fresh information by using printing techniques. The goal of JDF may be based on wishes to dramatically enhance productivity along with workflow automation. DTP (3) has improved workflows but in the prepress segment even now it has a uniform rise in influencing graphic production. On the contrary, network flow implements changes in print production in a much greater way. Things are going in a direction of total job and business process integration. E-production - everywhere, anytime. What is expected in the future printing?

Printing process line control is being introduced:

Prepress, press, postpress. This will take place only when interfaces are introduced into the printing works between the machines and the computer systems. Each machine must be described in detail through standards in various editions, material, printing actions. The interconnections of machines are described as the bottlenecks in production.
The success of the survival and development of printing lies in improving business dealings through improved printing services that, for example, develop XML based technology in the field of printing, communication, management. We have encouraged printing works by promoting digital movements in the printing industry as far back as the time of phototypesetting, DTP, continuing now to XML and JDF. All of these are only the beginning of a great transformation in the printing industry. Printing co-exsists with the electronic, so-called ePrinting and this is will determine the future of printing industry. EPrinting comprises the reproduction on paper directly from the computer, better known some twenty years ago as the idea of Desk- Top Publishing. Digital printing machines are turning into device that do not require specially trained operators. A maximum simplicity in handling is a part of the digital business culture.

E-printing includes participants who are ready to accept the new era and the following are comprised in this group: e-authors, e-users, e-publishers, e-designers, e-planning dept., e-order, e-printing works, e-postpress services, e-sales, e-archives and other participants of the e-society. All of them communicate and exchange information through the Internet as an electronic business society.Thus the requirements for speeding up printing time will be met, as well as reducing production expenses of conventional publications, resulting in a web e-publication. New relations between the users, printing works and material suppliers are created. New sources of authors, reproduction material, expert advisors, services, and new marketing relations are found. The customer and the producer are linked by the Internet and knowledge. All these participants are on line. Only people having a digital business culture will succeed in business with an e-based printing technology.

7. References
References are cited within the text