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Global Graphics debuts JDF-enabled Harlequin RIP at drupa

Monday, May 10, 2004

Press release from the issuing company

Düsseldorf; May 7, 2004 — Today Global Graphics, a subsidiary of Global Graphics SA (Euronext: GLOG) and the company behind the Harlequin RIP, introduces JDF Support for the Harlequin RIP, TrapPro in-RIP trapping, ColorPro in-RIP color management, and the Harlequin Screening Library. Powered by the new JDF Enabler module, this new development means that OEMs and System Integrators can now build JDF-enabled workflow solutions around the RIP and incorporate the Harlequin RIP into JDF-based applications. In addition, the latest version of the Harlequin RIP Eclipse Release (SP4), provides OEMs with a JDF option that meets the needs of both large customers with formal JDF workflow requirements and those that are looking to improve efficiency by adopting ad-hoc JDF workflows. A supremely flexible JDF solution, the JDF-enabled Harlequin RIP can be integrated into a full range of workflows, from the simplest entry-level set-up to the most powerful and sophisticated system. The Harlequin RIP is recognized as the standard for high-performance RIP technology and forms the core of many industry-leading proofing, imaging, direct-to-print and digital print workflows worldwide. With the JDF-enabled Harlequin RIP, Global Graphics is providing a unique product: Global Graphics is the first company to demonstrate that JDF can be used to control individual components in a workflow. In addition to providing JDF support for TrapPro in-RIP trapping, ColorPro in-RIP color management and the Harlequin Screening Library, JDF can also be used to control JDF processes such as interpretation, in-RIP imposition, rendering, separation and contone calibration, within a JDF-based production workflow. JDF support extends to JMF for easier integration with management systems, including functionality to interoperate with Management Information Systems (MIS). With the JDF Enabler Module the Harlequin RIP uses the Process Information inside a JDF file to drive the output procedure according to specific production data. Settings such as page size, screening, trapping, imposition, calibration and color management can be included in the job file and processed at the RIP. “Not only does this announcement bring JDF support to an advanced RIP product, the new JDF technology that we are delivering simplifies component integration and avoids the need for OEMs to write additional controller interfaces. It provides a supremely flexible JDF solution that can be implemented easily to bring powerful and efficient JDF-enabled workflows to market very quickly,” explains Adrian Ford, Chief Technology Officer, Global Graphics Software. “It’s important to stress that JDF will bring production efficiencies with significant return on investment to companies of all sizes and with a wide range of technical sophistication. Companies don’t need to have a full-scale MIS system in place before they can start to take proper advantage of the automation that JDF brings. The benefits of JDF-based production will be felt at all stages from large, all-encompassing workflows down to quite simple routines, including those where the imposition software is used as the ‘control panel’ for the workflow.” The JDF Enabler is compliant with the latest published JDF standard and is delivered as a standard option of the Harlequin RIP Eclipse Release (SP4). The core technology is also made available to Global Graphics partners as part of the Cortex Platform, Global Graphics’ family of technologies for building digital workflows (also announced today). Global Graphics is also working on extending JDF support across its range of workflow and print production technologies. Global Graphics’ commitment to providing its customers with the best possible JDF solution is demonstrated by the practical steps it has taken to ensure not just compatibility with the JDF specification, but also demonstrable interoperability with JDF solutions from other vendors. This has included participating in industry wide efforts undertaken by CIP4, PrintCity and NGP as well as promoting the concept of ad-hoc JDF workflows to bring the benefits of JDF to small to medium sized businesses. As a result, end users can immediately take advantage of the benefits of JDF in current production workflows, or simply within one or more single production steps, to gain immediate process improvements in speed and efficiency. For example, imposition workflows can be quickly defined to accept JDF files from all major prepress imposition packages to determine how the RIP processes the relevant pages, automatically, for output as imposed flats. The JDF Enabler demonstrates Global Graphics commitment to completely open solutions. Already interoperability has been validated with numerous products and solutions from vendors throughout the industry including: Imposition: Dynagram DynaStrip, Creo Preps, Ultimate Technographics Impostrip, Screen FlatWorker and OneVision Speedflow Impose; Job Management: DALiM MiSTRAL, and Agfa :Delano; MIS: ppiMedia PrintNet and OCSL Optimus. The JDF Enabler is just the first in a series of JDF-enabled technologies from Global Graphics designed to give OEMs a choice of easy-to-integrate tools with which to develop a variety of powerful JDF-based production solutions. Committed to open standards Strongly committed to evolving standards that bring significant improvements in print and communication processes and that provide its OEMs with a higher degree of compatibility with other vendors, Global Graphics is at the forefront of JDF development, both as an industry-wide standard through its work within CIP4, and specifically within its own RIP and PDF-based technologies. The company is a founding member of CIP4, the independent industry organization dedicated to defining and developing graphic arts production standards including JDF (its Senior Technical Consultant Martin Bailey has served as the Chief Executive for the past 4 years); part of the PrintCity Networking Activity Group which focuses on the integration of the various components in the “Closed loop….open systems” production workflow philosophy of the PrintCity alliance; and a member of Networked Graphic Production. Remote Proofing role in PrintCity Global Graphics is co-exhibiting with the PrintCity strategic alliance on Stand A44 in Hall 6 within the Network Integration Hub. In a JDF-enabled ‘multi-vendor’ workflow demonstration that integrates the management of MIS, Factory, Customer Relationship, Prepress Output, Press and Finishing processes, Global Graphics demonstrates the new JDF-enabled Harlequin RIP specifically handling a remote proofing application (just one of the many production roles the RIP can perform in a production environment). In this live demonstration the Harlequin RIP accepts instructions in JDF from an Agfa :Delano workflow and performs RIPing, validation, imposition, OPI, re-combination of pre-separated content, trapping, color management, advanced screening and proof output to a large-format inkjet plotter. Status and error handling information is provided in return allowing the system to confirm to the user when a remote proof has been printed. Multi-vendor interoperability in the CIP4 JDF Parc Global Graphics has been testing the JDF-enabled Harlequin RIP successfully with 30 CIP4 members’ systems in pre-drupa JDF ’interoperability’ tests for the past few months. As a result, the Harlequin RIP will be shown exchanging JDF data live with other leading vendors’ systems in an automated workflow daily within the CIP4 JDF Parc (Hall 4 Stand A33). Early adopters show JDF-enabled Harlequin RIP solutions Endorsing the market’s requirement for industry-standard automated workflows and the need for JDF-enabled core components, Global Graphics is pleased that several of its OEM partners will be introducing new versions of their RIP and workflow solutions based on the JDF capabilities of the Harlequin RIP at drupa. These include: EskoGraphics’ FlowDrive and the Xitron Xiflow 2.0 workflow with the Navigator RIP. At drupa the Xitron Xiflow will be interpreting JDF commands for subsequent RIPing and handling JDF imposition files from Dynagram’s DynaStrip for automatic processing and output as imposed flats. The updated JDF file is then output by the system for use in future process steps if required. This imposition routine is a good example of how JDF-based production can be immediately and easily implemented by print providers to achieve real improvements in production speed and accuracy.




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