Basics – Contents
Table of Contents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B01 Process Plans . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B15
Editorial . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B02 Prinergy Workflow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B16
Prepress Trends . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B03 New Output Philosophy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B17
From Office to Prepress . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B04 PDF + PJTF = CIM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B18
PDF Generation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B05 Corrections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B19
PDF – Simply Universal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B06 Remote Proofing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B20
Industry Standard . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B07 Further Applications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B21
PDF Output . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B08 Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B22
PS and PDF – Differences... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B09 About the Author . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B23
...and Similarities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B10 Instructions for Use . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B24
Portable Job Ticket Format . . . . . . . . . . . . . B11 Imprint . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FC2
Automated Output . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B12 Trademarks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BC1
Adobe Extreme . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B13 Addresses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BC2
Prinergy System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B14
PDF-Workflow / Basics
To coincide with the introduction of their on the Internet (see below for Internet make it available to a broader audience.
new PDF workflow system »Prinergy« address). The digital versions contain a Particular thanks go to my friend,
Heidelberg and Creo have asked me to number of hypertext links that lead to Bernd Zipper, who has provided great
write on the subject of PDF workflows in related topics in the other brochures. support to me on this project.
the printing industry for Heidelberg’s Each page deals with a separate top- I hope you will enjoy reading these
ic, making it easy for the user to read indi- brochures, and that PDF will be a success
B vidual pages and locate a particular top- for you.
Editorial ic at any time.
My aim in writing these brochures was
new range of specialist material, to provide practical guidance for the use
»vision+work«. of PDF in the print production process. Binningen, Switzerland
The result is a series of four brochures The brochures are not intended to replace August 1999
directed at different target groups: technical manuals, but rather to explain
• Basics: An introduction to PDF tech- the concept of PDF technology, share my
nology – intended for all readers. practical experience, and give tips to the
• Management: Economic and organi- reader.
zational aspects of PDF – for managers. These publications describe the manual
• Creation: The creation of PDF docu- PDF workflow using »Adobe Acrobat« Stephan Jaeggi
ments – for data suppliers (advertis- and standard plug-ins. They also describe
ing agencies, graphic artists, cus- the new potential offered by automatic
tomers). PDF workflow systems such as »Prinergy«.
• Production: Processing and outputting I would like to thank Heidelberg and
PDF files – for prepress technicians. Creo for giving me the opportunity to
publish these brochures.
The »Basics« brochure is available in For a long time, I have wanted to take
printed form. All four publications are the knowledge that I share in my semi-
available in digital form on CD-ROM and nars and lectures and write it down to
All four brochures can be downloaded as PDF documents
from the Internet at http://www.visionwork.net
The move from proprietary typesetting benefit from these solutions print shops
and image processing systems to DTP need to be supplied with digital files. Film
technology has brought the prepress as the universal medium of exchange
industry not only simpler and cheaper between businesses involved in pro-
workstations, but also a new role in the ducing printed materials, has had its day.
The industry now requires a digital
B replacement for film!
P r e p r e s s Tr e n d s The PDF data format is the ideal solution
in this regard. It can be generated by all
production of print originals. Graphic programs, is platform-independent and
designers, advertising agencies and even is perfect for incorporating all necessary
customers now often produce their pages data elements.
using a range of programs and data for-
mats themselves. Employing this data for
printing purposes has its problems. A new
type of service provider – imaging serv-
ice bureaus – has grown up that special-
izes in resolving these problems and
images data from a whole range of pro-
grams onto film. This film are then trans-
ferred to the print shop where they are
stripped manually into print signatures.
Print shops are looking to go digital
this step since it is both expensive and
prone to error. Some are also planning
to buy computer-to-film (CtF) or com-
puter-to-plate systems (CtP). In order to
Digital print originals are
required for computer-to-
plate systems. Scanning
PDF replaces film as the universal
films is only a temporary
medium of exchange. solution.
The »Portable Document Format« (PDF) The PDF data format is developing into
was originally developed by Adobe Sys- a universal standard for exchanging
tems for office communication. It was pages in print production. PDF is there-
intended as a means of exchanging doc- fore the ideal basis for using modern
uments effortlessly between various com- workflow systems for automated output.
From Office to Prepress
puter systems without the recipient hav-
ing to install all the software and fonts
used to generate the original document.
The initial version of the PDF format
was optimized for output on monitors
and laser printers. However, it lacked
much of the information needed for
imaging color separations on imageset-
ters or plate recorders.
Constantly urged by the printing indus-
try, Adobe has continued to extend its
PDF specifications. PDF version 1.3 that
was introduced with »Adobe Acrobat
4.0« contains all the information that the PDF was originally intend-
author believes is important for prepress ed for use in office com-
production. [Production P04] munication. It is now also
being used for imaging in
PDF 1.3 contains all the information
needed for film or plate imaging.
There are various methods of generating ing system (QuickDraw or GDI) into PDF. ods of PDF generation, such as »Paper-
PDF files, but not all of them are suitable However, since the operating systems do Capture« and »WebCapture«, also do not
for producing high-end PDF files for out- not support PostScript, it is not recom- generate PDF documents that are suit-
put on a high-resolution imagesetter or mended to use »PDFWriter«. Other meth- able for imaging either.
Today the most reliable method of
converting PostScript files is using the
»Acrobat Distiller« that permits optimum
setting of the size and quality of the PDF
file. Local data WWW Paper Original
Because Distiller not only generates
high-end PDF but also creates PDF for
online applications, it is very important PD
to set the Distiller options correctly.
[Creation C19, Production P06]
In the future, most publishing appli- PDF- PDF- Acrobat Web-Capture Capture Acrobat
cations will be able to export PDF direct- Export Writer Distiller Plug-in Plug-in Capture
ly. Adobe is giving software developers
access to its »PDF Library« so all applica-
tions will be able to generate PDF.
»PDFWriter« is a printer driver for
Apple Macintosh and Windows that con-
verts graphic instructions of the operat- PDF file
PDF files can be generated
using various methods.
Only Distiller and possibly
the direct export of PDF
»PDFWriter« is not suitable for the generation from an application are
suitable methods for gen-
of PDF files for imaging purposes.
erating high-end PDF.
Once created, PDF files are completely minute corrections are required just than the original PS file, as it has already
independent of the original application before imaging. [Production P12] been through a pre-interpretation pro-
and of the computer platform on which Thanks to object-oriented data storage, cess. [Production P20]
the pages were originally created. Cor- editing individual objects on a PDF page All types of data (color images, gray-
rectly generated PDF documents contain is a simple task, and corrections do not scale images, monochrome images or
text/vector graphics) can be compressed
B individually using different methods. This
PDF – Simply Universal means that PDF files are usually some-
what smaller than the original layout files
all the data required for screen display affect the rest of the PDF document. and corresponding images.
and for output on a printer, imagesetter, [Production P13] [Management M13]
or platesetter. Output reliability of PDF documents is
In addition to text, graphics, and very high, as the data has already been
images, fonts can also be embedded in processed by a PostScript interpreter.
PDF. However, this requires that the Unpleasant surprises caused by unex-
options in the PDF creation process are plained PostScript errors, a problem with
set correctly [Creation C19]. Otherwise, which any prepress operator is certainly
Acrobat simulates the fonts, that some- familiar, are more or less eliminated.
times can lead to undesirable effects . In most cases, output speed is also con- Font
[Creation C23] siderably higher with PDF than with the Artwork
Each PDF page is in itself complete. output of a PostScript file, since Distiller,
Consequently, it is very simple to divide as its name suggests, distills out all the
a PDF document into individual pages. important data during PostScript inter- Images Job data
This is particularly important when going pretation and eliminates unnecessary
to imposition [Production P22]. PDF pages commands. A PostScript file that has been
can also be easily replaced, something exported from Acrobat will therefore be PDF
that is particularly advantageous if last- smaller and will always be ripped faster
A PDF document is a data
PDF files are complete container that holds all
and compact. the data for a job.
The use of PDF enables standardization This makes generating a PDF file a sim- ards) as the standard for transferring
of page transfer. Regardless of the pro- ple operation, even for non-experts. advertisements and pages for printing.
gram and computer system used to cre- In the future, publishing applications The »ISO« (International Standards
ate the layout, the result is always the same will be able to generate PDF directly with Organization) is currently working on an
– a PDF containing all the necessary data. the aid of the »Adobe PDF Library« . appropriate ISO standard based on the
PDF is recommended by the American PDF file format.
B standards committee »CGATS« (Commit-
Industry Standard tee for Graphic Arts Technologies Stand-
In the future, print shops (or prepress
service providers) shall only receive PDF Page creation Prepress
files for processing. No longer will any- EPS
one have to struggle with files from dif-
ferent programs and program versions or
search for missing illustrations or logos.
Even the necessary fonts can be embed-
ded in the PDF file.
This obviously depends on an addi-
tional step being performed during the
page creation process – the generation
of the PDF file. Today Distiller is usually
used to do this, and is very simple to auto-
mate [Creation C27]. Version 4.0 includes PHOT
a new feature that enables the Distiller
settings to be customized by a prepress
provider or print shop and passed on to
all their data suppliers. [Production P07] PDF is the standard interface for transferring pages from com-
pany to company. This standardization creates greater reliability
PDF is becoming the international standard for
exchanging advertisements and pages for printing.
There are various ways of outputting PDF • Direct placement of the PDF pages in Script level 1 format and placing them
documents on an imagesetter or plate- the layout document using the ”Placed into the layout. [Production P17]
setter. The simplest method is direct out- PDF” function. However, a conversion Since separation of the CMYK colors is
put via a »Adobe PostScript 3« RIP. This to PostScript also takes place in the performed by the layout program, the
RIP can read PDF files directly via a hot background with this method. EPS files have to be imported as PostScript
[Production P18] level 1. This procedure can be used to col-
B • Exporting the PDF pages into an EPS or-separate complete pages as well as for
PDF Output (Encapsulated PostScript) file in Post- advertisements!
folder and convert them to PostScript.
Color PDF documents are color-separat-
ed using the in-RIP separation facility. RGB
and Lab colors are also converted into
With older RIPs, the PDF files first need
to be converted into PostScript before
being ripped. This can be done quite sim- Acrobat Composite PS PS L2-RIP
ply using the print command in Acrobat.
If an in-RIP separation feature is not avail-
able, the pages also need to be color sep-
arated. [Production P15] Composite Hot Folder PS 3-RIP
What should be done if several adver- PDF
tisements, that have been delivered as
PDF pages need to be placed on a news-
paper or magazine page? Most modern
layout programs offer two options for
doing this: Acrobat Composite EPS Layout Sep. PS PS L1-RIP
Color-separated output of
PDF pages requires differ-
PDF output can be performed on ent workflows depending
any PostScript imagesetter. on the PostScript RIP used.
PDF is to a certain extent the younger PDF, on the other hand, is a pure data the current page. This is also one of the
brother of PostScript. The page descrip- format that only contains the informa- main problems for imposition programs,
tion language PostScript was developed tion required to output the pages. It is no whose task it is to arrange the individual
during the early 80s to enable personal longer necessary to perform calculations pages of a PostScript job in a different
computers – then lacking in power – to or carry out other procedures prior to out- order on different print signatures.
Object-oriented storage in the PDF data
B format simplifies this task considerably.
PS and PDF – Differences… A PDF file can be considered as a kind of
database in which the user has direct
output complex pages containing text, put. The output reliability of PDF is there- access to all the elements placed on the
graphics, and images on a laser printer or fore considerably higher than that of pages of a document are in direct access.
imagesetter. To do this, as much process- PostScript. Individual pages can therefore be extract-
ing power as possible was transferred to The greatest difference between Post- ed from a PDF file and imported into
the computer driving the output device, Script and PDF is the fact that PDF is an another PDF file without any problems.
the Raster Image Processor (RIP). object-oriented data format, while Post- All the resources including fonts required
PostScript is a full-grown programming Script programs have to run sequential- to display the page are copied along with
language, and every PostScript document ly from beginning to end. It is very diffi- the file. Acrobat 4.0 allows the user to
is a program that has to be interpreted cult to extract individual pages from a directly move, copy or delete individual
by the RIP. Of course, errors can occur dur- PostScript file, since it is hard to know objects on a PDF page. These objects can
ing this process, and it is difficult to pre- whether a resource (e.g. a font) defined even be edited using suitable utilities.
dict how long the RIP process will take. on a previous page is required again on [Production P13]
Moreover, PostScript files often contain
device-specific commands that are not
understood by every output device. Post- Rendering
Script is therefore not particularly well Interpretation Screening Imaging
suited to rapid, reliable display of pages
on computer screens.
The RIP interprets, renders,
PostScript is a programming language. and screens a PostScript
PDF is an object-oriented data format. file in one step.
The PostScript page description language and the PDF file for- preted, this process is usually much faster and more reliable
mat are based on the same graphic model. As a result, Post- than ripping the original PS file. With PDF, the interpreter and
Script pages can be converted into PDF pages very easily using the renderer do not have to be in the same place at the same
»Acrobat Distiller«, and it is even simpler to convert them time.
back into PostScript again. [Production P20]
The origin of the PDF data format lies in the display list that Interpretation Rendering Screening Imaging
is created as an interim format in a PostScript RIP. It is in the
display list that the PostScript interpreter stores all the calcu-
lated objects for a page in a uniform format.
In the second phase of PDF generation, the objects in the Display list Bytemap Bitmap
(contone) (screen dots)
display list are converted by the renderer into individual pix-
els (bytemap) in the resolution required for the targeted out-
put device. Afterwards the contone pixels are screened. Interpretation Rendering Screening Imaging
The »Acrobat Distiller« contains a complete PostScript inter- PD
preter from Adobe. It interprets the commands of a PostScript
file and uses those to generate an object-oriented PDF docu-
ment. Because Distiller does not have to generate bitmaps, it PDF file Bytemap Bitmap
(objects) (contone) (screen dots)
does not need as many system resources (e.g. storage capaci-
ty, processing power) as a complete PostScript software RIP.
The bitmaps required to print a PDF page are generated
just before output in the Renderer of the printer, imagesetter,
or platesetter. Because the PDF file has already been inter- The display list is the precursor to the PDF
data format. In the PDF file, all page elements
are stored in an object-oriented format.
In a PDF workflow, the interpretation process, that is prone to
errors, can be performed much earlier than in a PostScript workflow.
Unlike a PostScript file, a PDF document cannot contain any • Media (e.g. name, size, weight, chrominance)
device control operators. This functionality is not provided for • Finishing (instructions for folding, cutting, binding, etc.)
in the PDF specification. • CIP3 information (inksetting defaults for printing presses)
For this reason, Adobe had to develop a new method for • Delivery information (addresses, number of copies)
PDF to permit storage of control information that is unrelat- • Scheduling (e.g. deadlines)
• Administration (e.g. customer, customer or order number,
B person in charge)
Portable Job Ticket Format
ed to the actual page content. For this purpose, they created
a new data format called »Portable Job Ticket Format« (PJTF)
that is very similar in structure to the PDF format. As with PDF,
PJTF stores information as hierarchical objects that can be
accessed directly with a program.
The separation of page content and processing instructions
increases flexibility during production. If changes are made
(e.g. paper quality) during the process, the individual data
elements no longer have to be opened in the original appli-
cation in order to accommodate the changes (e.g. new values
for dot gain, screen frequency, trapping). Instead, the para-
meters are changed in the job ticket.
The following information can be stored in a portable job
• Instructions for page processing (e.g. imposition layout, trap-
• Output parameters (e.g. screen frequencies/angles, resolu-
tion) A portable job ticket contains information
about the job and can be embedded in a PDF
file, or stored as an independent file.
The Portable Job Ticket Format (PJTF) is possibly even more important to
the digital workflow than the Portable Document Format (PDF).
It is often not sufficient to simply output individual PDF pages. These repetitive processes can be automated. Various man-
Instead, the pages need to go through various processes, that ufacturers have been offering output workflow systems for
may include some or all of the following steps: this purpose for a number of years. Most of them are closed
• Including high-resolution images (OPI), systems that work with proprietary data formats and some-
• Checking data (preflight), times with PostScript.
Thanks to PDF and the »Portable Job Ticket Format« [Basics
B B11], a new generation of PDF workflow systems is now com-
Automated Output ing onto the market. These give the user the openness that he
has come to expect from front-end systems.
• Optimizing images (downsampling the resolution, cropping Adobe has developed a new workflow architecture for this
the images), purpose. It is called »Adobe Extreme« [Basics B13], and is being
• Generating trapping, used by leading manufacturers as the basis for their PDF work-
• Converting colors (Color Management), flow systems. Although they have the same basis, these sys-
• Outputting page proofs, tems differ in the additional modules that they offer.
• Imposing pages to create print signatures,
• Outputting form proofs,
Refining Page proof Imposition Form proof Renderer Imagesetter Archive
In workflow systems all the processing steps
Modern workflow systems are based from the individual page through to the imag-
on PDF and the portable job ticket. ing of imposed print sheets are automated.
Some years ago, Adobe developed a new es that was of primary importance, but ation on the »Extreme« architecture espe-
architecture, code-named »Supra« designed rather the automated sequence of vari- cially for use in the prepress production.
to automate workflows when outputting ous processes (such as trapping and impo- [Production P33]
pages. Once released commercially, the sition). This »Extreme for Graphic Arts and Pro-
system was named »Adobe Extreme«. They also wanted to apply the advan- duction Printing« is the basis of the work-
tages of PDF to these tasks. Therefore, in flow systems such as »Prinergy« by
B 1998, Adobe Systems developed a vari- Heidelberg/Creo. [Basics B14]
This architecture was originally devel-
oped for digital printing, as Extreme per-
mits a job to be prepared in parallel on Coordinator
several Renderers. This technique is nec-
essary for fast digital printing systems
capable of producing several hundred dif-
ferent pages per minute. Attaining this Normalizer Sequencer Other JTPs
speed is difficult with PostScript because Other JTPs
PS files must be processed in sequence.
PDF documents, on the other hand, can
be split up and processed on several Ren-
derers. In Extreme, PS data is converted
to PDF using the »Normalizer«. P PD
P D F
PD DF F
Manufacturers of CtP systems were F
looking for a way to automate and speed
up the workflow steps involved in out-
putting pages. However, it was not so Store
much the parallel operation of process-
The data format used by
»Adobe Extreme« is PDF.
»Adobe Extreme« is the basis PostScript files are converted
to PDF by the »Normalizer«
for modern output workflow systems.
and stored in the »Page Store«.
Within their joint venture, Heidelberg the background. ”Process plans” are used Job Ticket format and then executed by
and Creo have developed an output to control the workflows and set to the the »Job Ticket Processors« (JTP) in the
workflow system based on »Adobe parameters for the various processes. The »Extreme« system. The instructions they
Extreme«, the Portable Job Ticket format, process plans are defined in the Portable contain are then executed.
and the PDF data format. The product
was pre-sented for the first time in Sep-
tember 1999 at the Seybold Conference
in San Francisco, and is called »Prinergy«.
Mac/NT Client Iris Proof Prinergy Trendsetter
In addition to the modules licensed Render Station
from Adobe, Prinergy also incorporates
some exclusive components developed
by Heidelberg and Creo. These include Primary Server
Color Management, the trapping func-
tions (incl. an interactive Trap Editor), the
»Virtual Proof System« and a database
for managing job tickets.
Prinergy is a client/server system. Page
processing is performed on one or more
NT servers, and Java applications on any
Macintosh or Windows computer in the Prinergy
network can be used for operation. Secondary Server
The objective of the system is to let as
many processing steps as possible run in Signastation Form Proof Delta Herkules Elite
The »Prinergy« system is scaleable. Addi-
»Prinergy« is the first complete tional servers can be used to match per-
PDF workflow system. formance to the needs of the user.
Every company has its own way of doing Splitting the definition of the work-
things. Even within a company, different flows in the process plans (a one-off oper-
jobs may require a number of specific ation) from the actual production of the
workflows. That's why the »Prinergy« sys- jobs greatly simplifies and standardizes
tem allows the user to set up their own the production process. It reduces errors
and makes output a routine operation
B that can be performed by any team mem-
Process Plans ber. It is therefore quite conceivable that
a printer on the late shift, without any
customized workflows in the form of special system training, might re-image
”process plans”. These process plans con- a plate that has been damaged while
trol the job ticket processors (JTP) in being clamped onto the press.
»Prinergy«. In a »Prinergy« system, several clients
They determine the sequence in which can access the system simultaneously and
a job goes through the processes, and process their jobs directly.
they also contain the parameters for the
control of the individual processes. The
process plans are stored in the Portable
Job Ticket format.
The process plans are defined by the
system administrator using the process
plan editor [Production P34], independ-
ently of the individual jobs. The process
plans are available to each operator
(depending on his access status) and are
activated by dragging the job onto the
required process plan (see illustration).
Process plans are user de-
Process plans contribute greatly to the fined and can be shared
automation and standardization of workflows. amongst the team.
When a new job is set up in the »Priner- been made, an imposition plan is assigned process. The data for the CIP3/PPF file is
gy« database, the pages are loaded into to the job. Now a form proof can be print- also generated during this step [Produc-
the system. The data can be imported in ed on a plotter for final checking. If every- tion P42]. Finally, the job data (PDF pages,
various formats and are converted into thing is as it should be, the job is sent to job tickets, imposition plan) are archived
PDF when necessary (see illustration). the ”Hi-Res renderer” of the output on DLT tapes. [Production P43]
The system also works with hot fold-
ers, that allow local users to print their
data directly. Each hot folder is connect-
ed to a process plan.
The pages are first put through the
»refining« process to prepare them for PS
final output. This step also involves check-
ing the data for completeness. The result
is a ”digital master” containing all the PS
data required for imaging. TIFF-I
The next step is to output the pages on PS
a page proofer for checking purposes. DCS
The integrated Color Management sys- DCS
tem is used to simulate the color space Normalizer
of the printing press. Once the proof
prints have been approved by the cus-
tomer and any necessary corrections have In addition to PDF pages,
Prinergy also processes
PostScript data. TIFF-IT
and DCS files are first con-
verted into composite
Most prepress processes can be PostScript using »CEPS-
Link« or the »Copydot
automated using »Prinergy«.
Toolkit« from Creo.
By separating interpretation and ren- dpi). The rendering process converts the separated data that is often already
dering [Basics B10], the »Prinergy« PDF PDF data respecting the abilities of the screened for the imagesetter. It is obvi-
workflow system has enabled a whole output device (resolution, color, screen). ously important in this new procedure
new approach to output. The refining The quality of text and graphics is there- that the same software is used in the ren-
process creates a ”digital master”, that fore much better than in systems that, derer for all output processes so that the
same results can be achieved on differ-
B ent output devices. »Prinergy« uses an
New Output Philosophy original Adobe Renderer for this purpose.
is already interpreted and contains all prior to print-out on a proofing device,
the elements required for high-resolu- have to downsample high-resolution, pre-
tion imaging. To output the PDF pages,
all that is requires is to render them.
In an output workflow system, the Refining Renderer
same page usually has to be output on
different devices – first on a page proof-
ing device, and then on a plotter to cre-
ate the form proof, and finally imaged
on film or plate. The basis for all these
outputs in »Prinergy« is the “digital mas-
ter“ in PDF format. Before each output
the page is rendered for the particular
output device. In »Prinergy« this task is
performed by a ”low-res renderer” (for
resolutions of up to 1000 dpi) and a ”hi-
res renderer”(for resolutions above 1000
The pages are only inter-
preted once and then
The new slogan is:
optimally rendered for
Interpret once – render many. each output process.
The use of the two standard formats estimation). A considerable amount of With PDF this is already possible today.
»Portable Document Format« (PDF) for information about the job that will be This is the only way that the printing
the definition of page contents and needed later on is already available at industry can depart from its currently
»Portable Job Ticket Format« (PJTF) for this stage (e.g. customer, number of rather craftsman-like style of working and
job parameters permits considerable copies, paper format, etc.). progress to industrial production. Thanks
In future, all programs used in the pro- to the portable job ticket and PDF, »Com-
B duction of print originals will need to be puter-Integrated Manufacturing« (CIM)
PDF + PJTF = CIM able to process job tickets. is no longer very far away.
The objective is to store the job ticket
automation of the output process. Now- information in the relevant data formats
adays the job ticket is created in work- and pass it on with the page contents.
flow systems such as »Prinergy« and used
primarily for system control and data stor-
But there is a lot more to the portable
job ticket than that. It also allows job
information to be collected far earlier in
the workflow and exchanged between
all those involved in the print production
process. This information can also be uti-
lized in the steps following plate imag-
ing, and can be used for automation.
It is therefore essential that the
portable job ticket will be used far more
widely in future. Job tickets could be set-
up and partially filled in already by the
customer or an MIS software (e.g. for job
PDF and the portable job
ticket permit industrial-
Digital job information is transferred
style production in the
alongside the digital pages. prepress stage.
PDF files facilitate communication strikethrough, underlining, marker pen, the PDF page (see illustration). He can
between all those involved in the pro- note, stamp, pencil, rectangle and line. send back the whole corrected PDF file
duction of print originals. It is even possible to attach complete or just the exported layer with his com-
For example, a layout technician or files to a PDF document or to record ver- ments to the creator of the page.
designer can send the results of his work bal comments and store them in the PDF It is even possible to import several of
document. such exported layers with comments from
B The recipient can add his comments different people into a single PDF file (see
Corrections directly on an ”electronic layer” laid over illustration).
electronically to his customers as a PDF
document for assessment.
Since PDF files are relatively small, they
can be sent as part of a regular e-mail
without any problems, even with large
projects. [Management M14]
The recipient does not need to have
the same software used to create the
pages, he simply opens the PDF file in
Acrobat. The Reader, supplied free of
charge with Acrobat, is sufficient to allow
him to view and print out the pages.
However, the Reader does lack a few of the
interesting functions of the full program.
»Acrobat 4.0« contains special func-
tions for adding notes and corrections.
A range of tools is available, and includes
»Acrobat 4.0« offers a
range of tools for making
annotations. A comment
With PDF, corrections can
can be entered for each
be exchanged electronically. annotation.
Remote proofing is certain to be one of printer also has to be characterized in a ers are within reach of anyone dealing
the most interesting applications of PDF color profile. The quality of the inkjet with printed matter. Many print shops are
in prepress production. printers available on the market has even planning to make a printer avail-
Remote proofing allows prepress serv- improved dramatically over the last few able to their best customers free of
ice providers, advertising agencies and months. At the same time the prices of charge. The savings made in proofs, trans-
A3+ models are coming down. It will port costs and valuable time will more
B therefore not be long before these print- than compensate for this investment.
graphic artists to transmit their layouts
as PDF files via ISDN or over the Internet
to a customer, who can output the pages
a few minutes later on an inkjet printer
that can now be purchased for just a few
thousand dollars. True-color output is
ensured by a Color Management system.
In PDF 1.3, input profiles – that charac-
terize the colors in the PDF file – can be
embedded in accordance with the ICC
standard (International Color Consor-
tium) [Creation C25]. When printed on
an inkjet printer, the ICC output profile
for the printing press will be used with
the correct paper, thereby harmonizing
the color space of the inkjet printer with
that of the planned printed product.
Obviously, the color behavior of the inkjet
»PressReady« from Adobe
Remote proofing is an interesting is a cost-effective remote
proofing application for
new application of PDF.
PDF is not just restricted to use in pre- The »Acrobat Catalog« program can
press production. It was originally be used to generate a full-text index, that
intended as a data format for digital pub- allows words or combinations of words Possible applications
lications. With the use of PDF for digital to be searched and located in a few sec- for PDF
publications the pages are created in var- onds in large PDF collections.
• CD-ROM with annual editions of
B magazines or technical manuals
Further Applications of PDF (with full-text search function).
ious publishing programs and printed to PDF documents prepared in such ways • Electronic catalogs with ordering
a PostScript file. Converting PostScript can be used for a whole range of inter- feature.
into PDF using »Acrobat Distiller« is a esting applications (see box).
simple process that can even be auto- • Publication of printed matter on
mated. [Creation C27] the Internet (e.g. annual reports,
The next step is to prepare the PDF sales brochures, magazine arti-
documents for interactive use on the cles).
monitor. The Acrobat program is used for
this purpose. This software allows users • Interactive publications with
to define ”hypertext links” to other pages video and sound (e.g. product
or documents. presentations).
In order to allow larger amounts of text
to be read comfortably on the monitor, • Full-page archives of newspapers,
bookmarks and article threads can be magazines, product information
added. The form tool can be used to add (with full-text search function).
fillable fields and buttons that perform
various actions, such as sending a com- • Electronic order forms
pleted PDF form to a web sever.
In addition to page transfer,
PDF can also be used for a wide
range of other applications in
PDF is the universal data format prepress like CD-ROM or the
for print and new media. Internet.
PDF technology is of vast importance to initial disagreement. This time, the tran- op innovative products aimed at restrict-
the graphic arts industry for a number of sition can take place smoothly, because ed groups of users at a reasonable cost,
reasons. PDF is the direct digital replace- PDF and PostScript workflows can be and to bring them to market rapidly.
ment for film as an exchange medium operated in parallel to each other.
and archiving. PDF will improve and sim- PDF has a bright future in the graphic
Nevertheless, it should not be forgot- arts industry. It really is worthwhile get-
B ten that PDF is still in the early stages of ting a handle on this new technology!
Summary development. Many publishing applica-
tions do not yet support PDF properly.
plify cooperation between all partners Layout and graphic software need to
involved in the production of printed improve the way they support compos-
matter. It will also promote standardiza- ite workflow [Production P30]. Prepress
tion and automation in production. In the applications (imposition, OPI, trapping)
future, the portable job ticket will extend need to be able to process PDF directly
this automation beyond output workflow without conversion into other data for-
systems. PDF also provides traditional mats. Adobe needs to incorporate the
prepress service providers with an ideal major prepress functions directly into
interface to new media such as CD-ROM Acrobat (first of all color separations).
and the Internet, opening up new areas
of activity for these companies. Acrobat is set to become the basic
The changeover to PDF is set to occur application for professional prepress
more quickly than the transition to Post- tools. In the future, software manufac-
Script ten years ago. There are several rea- turers will no longer have to develop com-
sons for this. This time, manufacturers plete applications, but will instead be able
and users agree that PDF is the right way. to program special functions as plug-ins
With PostScript and desktop publishing, for Acrobat. This makes it possible for
on the other hand, there were a lot of small independent developers to devel-
PDF is not a remedy for all
current prepress problems.
But PDF is able to solve
PDF is set to change the graphic arts industry quite a number of known
just as radically as PostScript did ten years ago. problems.
The author, Stephan Jaeggi, is a well- heard about PDF and »Carousel« (the Arts Companies (now VISCOM), a posi-
known PDF expert in Europe. He has code name for »Acrobat«) at the Seybold tion that enabled him to assist the 1200
already introduced thousands of profes- conference. member companies with the introduc-
sionals to the secrets of PDF in over one Shortly after, he set up his own busi- tion of PostScript and DTP technologies.
hundred seminars and numerous lectures. ness and founded the company PrePress-
Consulting, based in Binningen near Basel
B in Switzerland. During its early years, the
About the Author company offered a wide range of con-
sultancy and support services for prepress
He also receives regular invitations to the companies and printshops. Since 1996,
Seybold conferences in the USA to speak PrePress-Consulting has been concen-
on the subject of PDF. Stephan Jaeggi is trating exclusively on PDF.
co-author of the white paper »PDF for After leaving college in 1978, Stephan
prepress« presented in New York in March Jaeggi did a practical course in a print-
1998. shop and went on to study at the Swiss
This white paper and a great deal more School of Engineering for Printing and
information about PDF can be found on Packaging. He graduated with an
Stephan Jaeggi's web server (Internet HTL/ESIG qualification in print engi-
address as below). neering.
The German-language newsletter He then worked as a systems manag-
»PDF-Aktuell« is also published on this er in a large print shop, where he was
server, and provides a summary of the lat- responsible for the evaluation, installa-
est news on PDF. Everybody can subscribe tion and operation of a large mainframe
to this newsletter free of charge at typesetting system (using HELL Digiset
Our author has been working on PDF He was then appointed Secretary for
technology since 1991, when he first IT at the Swiss Association of Graphic
Stephan Jaeggi has been
an enthusiastic advocate
of PDF technology for
Further information on PDF and the »PDF-Aktuell« some years. He is also
well-known as an
newsletter is available at http://www.prepress.ch informed critic of vendors.
The electronic version of the in the basic settings ”File>Preferen-
"vision+work" brochures is very simple. ces>General... CMD+K”. These settings Previous view . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
The buttons on the right-hand side of the are only important for the off-line ver-
page are used to navigate between the sion. They have no impact in the Inter-
pages. net. Next page . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Instructions for Use Previous page . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
The pages have an article thread. The ”Find” button can be used to
Table of content . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Clicking on a column enlarges the text search for words in the brochures. A full-
to full screen width. Clicking again calls text index is also supplied on the CD-ROM.
up the next screen fill. This allows you to search through all the Bookmarks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Hypertext links are built into the text. brochures. Unfortunately, this does not
These lead to pages containing related work on the Internet, so the normal
topics [Basics B02]. Clicking on one of search function of the Reader is called up Find . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
these links opens the relevant page. The in the Internet version of the brochures.
top button ”Previous View” takes you You will find further information about
back to your previous page. how to use the Reader under ”Help> Find again . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
The links not only take you to pages Reader Guide”.
in the same brochure, but also to pages The program is closed using the com-
in the other files. Unfortunately, with its mand ”File>Quit”. Help . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
standard settings, Acrobat closes the first
file when you jump to another one. It is
therefore important to disable the ”Open Print . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Cross-Doc Links in Same Window” option
Author: Stephan Jaeggi, PrePress-Consulting Greatest care has been taken in compiling the information in this publication and, whenever possible,
Co-author: Bernd Zipper, ZIPCON Consulting GmbH checks were made to see that the information was correct. Despite this, errors cannot be fully excluded.
Editor: Gabriele Butzke, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG Some information came directly from the manufacturers and could not be verified. Neither author nor
Kimberly Lawrence, Creo Products Inc. publisher assume any warranty or liability for damages that may occur through the application of the
Translation: Derek Robinson, Linguatext information contained in this brochure. Please also note that software is the object of this application
Carolyn Healy and as such is prone to errors and that problems in application of software can never be excluded.
Layout and Design: Lemon Design GmbH These pages were written in August 1999 and are based on Acrobat version 4.01, PDF version 1.3 and
Illustrations: Uwe Faerber, Designwerk the preliminary version of Prinergy 1.0. Improvements in later versions could not be included. This
Production: ZIPCON Consulting GmbH brochure reflects the opinion of the author and must not coincide with that of the publisher. This
Pictures: Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG, brochure was originally written in German. Errors in translation cannot be excluded.
Uwe Faerber, Designwerk,
Adobe Systems, Special thanks to Photodisc Germany GmbH for providing the images for
ZIPCON Consulting GmbH this brochure series. Photodisc in the Internet: www.photodisc.com
Prepress: Prinergy, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
Copyright: Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
Subject to changes and modifications without notice. Quickmaster-DI, Signasetter, Heidelberg, Herkules,
Signastation are registered trademarks; Delta is a trademark of Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG.
Creo, Prinergy, Virtual Proof System, Copy Dot Toolkit, Trendsetter and other products are either regis-
tered trademarks or trademarks of Creo Products Incorporated.
Adobe, the Adobe logo, Acrobat, the Acrobat logo, Acrobat Capture, Distiller, Adobe Type Manager,
ATM, Illustrator, PageMaker, Photoshop and PostScript are trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated.
Microsoft, Windows, and Windows NT are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft-
Corporation in the U.S. and/or other countries. Apple, Macintosh, Mac, Power Macintosh and TrueType
are trademarks of Apple Computer, Inc. registered in the U.S. and other countries.
All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
vision+work is a series of
practical support tools
CREO PRODUCTS INC. from Heidelberg. It serves
3700 Gilmore Way as a platform for experts in
Burnaby, British Columbia new technologies and
Canada V5G 4M1 applications to offer useful
www.creo.com advice and production tips.
vision+work is available
either on CD-ROM for PC
and Mac, online on the
Internet, or as a printed