Ricoh Claims Breakthrough in PDF Processing
September 14, 2011 Alex Woodie
Companies that use Ricoh‘s automated document factory (ADF) offering will be able to do all kinds of new things with PDF files that were previously impossible to do without converting to a different format, the company claims.
Ricoh’s Production Print Solutions unit (formerly InfoPrint Solutions Company, formerly the printing division of IBM) claimed several industry firsts with last week’s update to InfoPrint ProcessDirector, its PDF solution used by high-volume print operations. From the sound of it, Ricoh is squeezing management benefits from PDF documents that previously were the domain of the high-end advanced function presentation (AFP) document format.
RPPS says InfoPrint ProcessDirector now offers “native” PDF workflow support. This enables users to index, edit, split, sort, and group disparate PDF print jobs. It can also identify document boundaries; perform pre-production manipulations, such as address cleansing or adding barcodes; and even add variable data to the file.
These are all features that were “previously only achievable using data stream transforms,” the company says. In other words, PDF is starting to benefit from the high-end capabilities that have been the hallmark of AFP–at least within the InfoPrint ProcessDirector product. It’s no wonder that native support for PDF workflow has been a “highly requested capability,” according to RPPS.
Other new PDF features include the capability to extract data from the PDF and use it to optimize post-production processes, like inserting and finishing. Better communication with printers enables job reconciliation (another AFPDS-type feature), and reprinting with high fidelity, RPPS says.
But wait, there’s more PDF goodness! RPPS says the new InfoPrint ProcessDirector release gets a new PDF Acrobat Toolkit that allows users to do all kinds of things, like edit PDF documents and create indices. Integration with Enfocus‘ PitStop Server enables customers to take advantage of PitStop’s “preflighting” features (or doing last-minute checks of documents before sending them off to the high-volume printer). This release also gets integration with Ultimate‘s Impostrip automation tool for improved preparation of PDF documents prior to printing and routing. Better color management of PDF files is delivered through changes to the Ink Savvy tool.
RPSS vice president of business development Chris Reid says the new PDF capabilities support the evolution of the print market.” “Printers of all sizes are seeking new ways to differentiate themselves by offering more communication solutions, most of which are produced in PDF environments and many of which require production integrity,” he says in a press release.