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What's On Line?
January 1, 2000

Peer into today's kaleidescope of online booksellers By Tatyana Sinioukov Now that more and more bookstores have ".com" in their addresses, physical books are being replaced by e-books that have no spines and no pages you can turn by hand--and they aren't even made of paper. Well, everyone knows that. However, what is fascinating to witness is how both traditional and electronic publishers show great creativity in the way they sell their wares on the Web. As the listing beginning at right illustrates, the emerging business models for selling books online grow more varied and inventive by the day. An example of one company

Editor's Notebook - E-book Alert
December 1, 1999

Fire alarms screamed and lights flashed just as Dick Brass, vice president of technology development at Microsoft's research division, began to speak about the future of e-books at a recent conference. The conference, Electronic Book '99, was hosted by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) at headquarters in Gaithersburg, MD. It attracted major e-book makers, display makers, disk drive producers, college librarians, conversion service providers, printers, book and journal publishers and representatives for the blind and vision-impaired. As loud as they were, the shrieking alarms, which were not a special effect arranged by Brass but an NIST building alert (for which we

Serious about CTP
December 1, 1999

Contemplating a move to CTP? Here's a quick list of key issues to consider, prepared with the input of managers like you Just how do you begin to hammer out your own plan for computer-to-plate (CTP) printing? One first step is asking your suppliers about their capabilities, so you can see how they might mesh with your own organization's capabilities and goals. To provide our readers with some practical, hands-on advice, we checked with three managers experienced in overseeing CTP work, and compiled their advice into this list of key questions. Special thanks to our field advisors John Calvano, editorial operations director, Time Inc.

E-book Industry players seek effective business models
December 1, 1999

by Rose Blessing "E-books are more than hype right now. E-books are definitely here," asserted Victor McCrary, group leader, Information Storage and Integrated Systems Group, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). McCrary was speaking at the Electronic Book 1999 conference held in Gaithersburg, MD, in September, the second such conference sponsored by NIST; he chaired the event. McCrary and many other speakers--including the reading-device makers--agreed that improved displays, lowered device weights and decreased power requirements are desired. "A lot of work still needs to be done in terms of (creating) a thriving electronic book industry," added McCrary. He credited SoftBook Press and NuvoMedia

News From the Foil Stamping Front
July 1, 1999

by Tatyana Sinioukov The foil stamping industry has been enjoying a quiet year, it seems. Some changes that are worth mentioning, however, include an apparent increase in use of hot stamping foils for books and the emergence of several new products and processes. More than ever, stamping foils come in a wide variety of colors, finishes and effects: from marble, snake skin, imitation leather, pearls, wood grains and geometric patterns to holograms, pigments, metallics and tints, offering book designers endless creative possibilities. "The cost of foil has come down considerably over the last two years, too, and that makes a big difference," reveals Stewart

Not Just Kids Stuff
July 1, 1999

Not Just Kids' Stuff Q&A Linda Palladino by Rose Blessing Now vice president of production, juvenile books, William Morrow & Company, Linda Palladino has been working in her field for 22 years and still finds it exciting. "The day you think you know everything in book production, you might as well retire," she says. What keeps life interesting for Linda Palladino? Many things, she explains: the fast pace of technological change, the many wonderful people she has had a chance to meet, including the authors, editors and illustrators of the books she works on as well as members of book production industry organizations

CTP A Budget Review
July 1, 1999

by Molly Joss Getting into CTP can be a learning experience, as panelists at the BookTech '99 session "CTP Part Two: Economic Issues Roundtable" explained. Session speakers, who shared their experiences in detail, included --Jerry Charlton, director of customer technical services, Quebecor Books, Kingsport, TN --Deborah Jones, senior production manager, McGraw-Hill, School Division, New York City --Craig Yolitz, director, prepress department, the West Group, Eagan, MN --Mark M. Krahforst, manufacturing manager, Rodale Press Overall, panelists described the experience of venturing into CTP as a positive one. As speakers described their experiences, a unifying pattern emerged -- each company had moved slowly into it as

Setting The Pace at Prima Publishing
May 1, 1999

A three-day turnaround of The Starr Report is just one example of the fast footwork constantly required of this rapidly growing, independently owned West Coast book publisher by Rose Blessing When a national drama unfolds and is reported by an author who may be unpopular but writes in succinct English prose and provides the copy for free on the Internet, what's a publisher to do? When this happened last year, a few publishers jumped quickly, capturing the text and publishing printed versions as books. Among that group was Rocklin, CA-based Prima Publishing. The "official report of the independent counsel's investigation of the President," written

Got It Covered
May 1, 1999

by Tatyana Sinioukov Saying that a book is judged by its cover is not an overstatement. In fact, all stages of cover design, from concept to execution, come into play as equally important. Here, industry professionals share tips on cover design for efficient production, from choosing the right materials to shedding light on finishing options to outlining trends related to book cover production. Material concerns To select the right materials for the project, says Brice Draper, vice president of sales and marketing, Permalin Products, New York City, consider the project's direction, its cost and aesthetics, and the durability of materials used. Start with the

Why On Demand?
May 1, 1999

by Tatyana Sinioukov At BookTech '99, publishers and printers shared success stories of turning to print-on-demand as a way of keeping reprints and out-of-print titles alive Today, the industry is changing. "Authors are becoming publishers, wholesalers are becoming printers, retailers are becoming printers and publishers," said Larry Brewster, vice president and general manager, Lightning Print, a subsidiary of Ingram Industries, La Vergne, TN, at the BookTech '99 "Digital Short-Run Case Studies" session. Such factors as the digitizing of desktop publishing and distribution and existence of the Internet and print-on-demand are reshaping publishing, he said. "The bookstores are no longer limited by four walls--you can

Master the Web By the Book
March 1, 1999

What it takes to build and manage a book publisher's Web site by Tatyana Sinioukov As a publishing medium, the Internet is "maturing," and many book publishers have gained significant experience in site management. We asked publishers and Web service providers what it takes to build--and maintain--a user-friendly Web site, what workflow models work best for book publishers, and what their hot buttons are when it comes to implementing the various workflow techniques. Site management requires implementing smart workflow techniques, managing updating processes and files across networks and platforms, as well as handling time-sensitive content, automating site production, making the site searchable, promoting it,

CTP Opinions
January 1, 1999

CTP Opinions In four-color CTP, digital file preparation is more complicated and time-consuming; scanning, image editing, trapping and other prepress functions require more capable (and expensive) systems as well as highly-skilled prepress operators.-- --Frank Ervin, vice president of training and technology at Phoenix Color The biggest ad-vantage of CTP--better print quality--is most dramatic with four-color. --Steve Franzino, who is vice president of technology, Courier Corp "A black-and-white book typically is about 100 MB. A four-color book of the same page size is typically about 4 GB." --Craig Bauer, facilitator of information technology and digital prepress, R.R. Donnelley Roanoke A switch to a CTP

Living Digitally in a Four-Color World
January 1, 1999

When it comes to computer-to-plate printing, more printers and publishers join the ranks of the believers every day, either experimenting with CTP with their four-color jobs, or switching to it by Tatyana Sinioukov Despite some limitations, as discussed by industry professionals below, CTP for four-color book production saves time and money and offers faster turnaround and higher quality than a conventional, film-based workflow. That's why more and more printers and publishers join the ranks of the believers every day, either experimenting with CTP with their four-color jobs, or switching to it completely. According to Frank Ervin, vice president of training and technology at

The Color Checkpoint
January 1, 1999

The color image scans produced for Time Inc. Home Entertainment books must be top quality. To assure himself that proofs he's reviewing represent what will ultimately be printed, Editorial Operations Manager John Calvano asks prepress houses that work for Time to run out a test page every two weeks on the devices regularly used to print proofs. The page includes three images from some of his previous jobs--images for which he knows what to look for--as well as industry-standard color patch strips. Since a book's scans are often produced in batches over several weeks, the test pages help him check for color consistency over time.

What's a Publisher to Do?
January 1, 1999

CTP Veterans Share Tips For Publishers Taking Their First Steps By Tatyana Sinioukov So what's a publisher to do when considering going CTP with four-color work? Do your homework, first and foremost, insists Rick Wills, electronic prepress manager, Banta Book Group, Menasha, WI. Tom Carpenter, director of book development for the North American Outdoor Group (NAOG), Minnetonka, MN, agrees, suggesting visiting a publisher who is already using CTP as a first step. "We all know people at other publishing companies, and the technology isn't proprietary--I can't see where anyone would have a problem showing you what goes on, as a professional courtesy," he muses. "You can't understand

Making CTP A Reality
January 1, 1999

Browsing in bookstores while holiday shopping last month, perhaps you glimpsed Entertainment Weekly The 100 Greatest TV Shows of All Time, People's Unforgettable Women of the Century, The Life Millennium, or Time Almanac. If so, you know that a hallmark of these publications is meticulous treatment of photos and color. John Calvano, editorial operations manager at Time Inc. Home Entertainment, is one of the behind-the-scenes individuals responsible for overseeing quality of those publications--and more. When all is said and done, at the end of 1998 Calvano expected to have overseen editorial production for 8,000 pictures within 10,000 pages across 37 titles (or 52 if

Publisher Perspective - Book Manufacturing Turnaround Times
November 1, 1998

By Rose Blessing The top brass at printing companies insist that their top priority is finding ways to meet publishers' demands for faster turnaround times, an August feature in this magazine reported. Now, a look at how print buyers view this trend Diane Grossman Assistant Production Manager Publishing Services Academic Press Now and then Diane Grossman asks for a miracle from her printers--and gets it. Yet overall she has not noticed faster industry job turnaround times since joining Academic Press nearly two years ago, she says. On the whole, turnaround times have never been a problem area, possibly because she's able to give her

PDF All Aboard?
November 1, 1998

Maybe we have an answer to all our prepress problems. It's called PDF. That's short for Portable Document Format. It's Adobe's file format. It's not difficult to grasp the basic principles of what PDF is all about. But it takes more than the page I have here, so please go read our related stories, then come back. All done? Good. (OK, for those of you who hate to flip pages, you should at least know that a PDF file can be made from a PostScript file. PostScript is the final format of a file made with Adobe's PageMaker or Illustrator programs and Quark's QuarkXPress, among others.) So, you

Automate Your Compostion Processes
November 1, 1998

INPUT: a few dollars for new software + a little time to learn to use it OUTPUT: time saved; errors minimized; consistent and dynamic-looking pages Tremendous advantage can be gained through effective application of digital techniques and technologies, advises Irving S. Berman, digital production and workflow specialist for 21st Century Publishing and Communications (21C). Of course it helps to know the tools to use. So Berman compiled this list of concisely described software automation tools to share with BookTech readers. As extensive as it is, it is still by no means a definitive list, he says, and he invites readers to help him add

Internet Extends Endless Opportunity
November 1, 1998

"It's never complete." There are always more interesting places to take it," comments Kelly Maragni, director of marketing for Health Communications. Maragni is speaking of the corporate Web site (http://www.hci-online.com), which she's been working on continuously for the past two years, with the help of technical and developmental expertise provided by Worldwide Publishing. For example, though blurbs and excerpts and covers are up on the Web, she wonders whether she should videotape an upcoming book signing event and run video clips on the Web. Her clients--bookstores, distributors, wholesalers and chain stores--are also excited about the Internet and want sample covers, book excerpts or promotional