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CIP4 Publishes Interoperability Conformance Specifications

Press release from the issuing company

Darmstadt, Germany (January 31, 2005) - The International Cooperation for the Integration of Processes in Prepress, Press, and Postpress (CIP4) today announced the publication and availability of technical specifications known as Interoperability Conformance Specification (ICS) documents. ICS documents guide suppliers of the print industry in improving open connectivity and interoperability of their products using JDF. Each ICS defines a set of requirements that a JDF-enabled product must meet in order to interoperate with other conforming JDF-enabled products. The ICS documents define subsets of the JDF specification that contain only those aspects of JDF that a particular class of products need to share. For instance, a folding machine does not need to handle color management data. The ICS documents may be incorporated in the buying requirements of users and will serve as the basis for JDF product certification testing that will be managed by GATF and introduced later this year. Additional ICS documents will be released to cover other classes of JDF enabled products. The current releases are: * Base ICS - Defines the requirements that are common to all other ICS's. * MIS ICS - Defines the requirements related to the communication between Management Information Systems and production equipment. It describes requirements that are common to all stages of the production process (pre-press, press and post-press). * MIS to Prepress ICS - Defines the processes for a prepress workflow system that produces proofs, plates and previews for conventional printing. * MIS to Sheetfed Printing ICS - Defines the requirements for sheetfed offset printing. * Prepress to Sheetfed Printing ICS - Defines the interface between a prepress workflow system and a press controller. * Binding ICS - Defines the requirements for saddle stitching, soft-cover and hardcover binding devices. * Integrated Digital Print ICS - Defines the requirements for digital printing devices with integrated finishing capabilities. "Although JDF-enabled devices on the market are fundamentally interoperable, the ICS program provides a common understanding of how to establish communications between JDF-enabled products that is largely based upon the wealth of implementation experience that the CIP4 member vendors now have", said Dr. Rainer Prosi of Heidelberg and CIP4's technical officer. "Capturing the implementation experience in these documents represents an enormous investment by the members of CIP4. Users want some assurances that products are interoperable as advertised. The ICS documents are a key component of the CIP4 product certification program." "ICS documents are for developers and technically savvy power users. End users will never need to look at them." said CIP4 executive director James Harvey. "The publication of these ICS documents marks an important milestone in the maturation of JDF." The ICS documents are cataloged in an ICS registry at http://www.cip4.org/document_archive/ics.php and the public can download copies of the ICS documents, free of charge, from the ICS registry page.