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SoftCare Rebrands as vjoon

Press release from the issuing company

(October 15, 2008) The more than 150 visitors at the 4th International K4 User Conference, held on Friday in Hamburg, were surprised to learn that Hamburg-based software house SoftCare has rebranded as vjoon. The company also revealed what its Xanthos project stands for: the revolutionary publishing platform and latest system version K4 6.0. The public will have a chance to see vjoon K4 6.0, supporting Adobe CS4, from October 27 to 30 at the IFRA Expo in Amsterdam (Hall 10/Booth 10330). At the tradeshow, vjoon will present innovative cross-media strategies together with its partners AD HOC, axaio, CoreMedia, GrafiData, MEI, NeoGeo, PCI, SNAP, SYSPRO, and Topix.

"vjoon stands for our mission - vision, value and cooperation," said Andreas Schrader, Managing Director and CEO of vjoon GmbH, explaining the name change from SoftCare. "We have become so much more than just a company producing a publishing system. We have turned K4 into a publishing platform that can flexibly handle continuously evolving editorial structures and individually control and fill any number of media channels." When the company was first established in 1990, then as SoftCare, it followed a vision. The company was one of the first to develop plug-ins for Adobe and to integrate editorial solutions. Today, more than 300 K4 systems are installed worldwide at publishing houses and corporate publishers. K4 users, distribution and technology partners, as well as potential K4 customers had traveled from all over the world, coming from many places in Germany, but also from the United States, Russia, Malaysia, Great Britain, France, Benelux and many other countries, to attend the annual event in Hamburg, which presented the latest K4 version along with interesting user case studies.

Xanthos is the completely new set-up of K4

With version 6.0, vjoon is coming out with the most important release in its company history. K4 6.0, which was specifically developed for Adobe Creative Suite 4.0, represents a workflow revolution. In contrast to all known editorial and publishing systems in the market, K4 6.0 is not status-based, but assigns specific tasks to employees for editing text, image and layout documents. This marks a change of paradigm for vjoon that discontinues the practice of checking documents in and out, and instead focuses on the user's perspective. In modern editorial environments with freelancers and external agencies, users often barely have time to become familiar with a new publishing system. The assignment of tasks makes the publishing process more realistic, intuitive, and consequently, much easier. To avoid long waiting times, vjoon K4 also allows for dividing tasks, with parcels completed independently. As an example, the preparation of an image for the Internet can be divided into rendering the image data for optimal Web resolution and citing an image source. Once the image is rendered, it is ready for further processing; for example, to add a caption. However, the image will not be exported to the Web until it is authorized with an image credit.

Serve all Media with Split Workflow

The split workflow of K4 6.0 is fundamental to the product's function as a cross-media publishing platform. In contrast to version K4 5.9, which allowed for exporting print content to the Web or to be archived, K4 6.0 is able to split workflows for all K4 objects, such as articles, images, or layouts, for corresponding media channels and even recognizes dependencies between individual workflows. For example, if an Internet article is sufficiently prepared for the print edition of a newspaper or magazine and is to be read into the layout by the final editor, but the corresponding image has not yet been authorized, the system will report the "problem" and notify the user. Any number of workflows can be created in K4 6.0 for any of the object types.

In addition to the pioneering concept of a task-based workflow and the option to split the workflow for individual objects or media channels, vjoon K4 is documenting its trend-setting capacities with its standard interfaces via Web services, which guarantees flexible connectivity to third-party systems. The new intuitive user interface also is an important step toward simplifying the administration of K4. The many templates and wizards ensure that daily chores such as creating new user profiles can be done quickly and efficiently. Furthermore, vjoon K4 6.0 includes another  nearly 40 new features that make work easier. A modern multi-tier-architecture and the use of Java and AJAX form the basis of this new benchmark in publishing.