According to IBM Corp, Adobe Systems Inc’s new PostScript Extreme software should revolutionize high-speed PostScript printing and take business away from the conventional off-set print market. IBM, which claims to be the first company to implement PS Extreme (formerly codenamed Supra), on an RS/6000-based InfoPrint 4000 print system, says the software makes it economically viable to do very small print runs of books, enabling, for example, students to have text books individually customized for their studies. IBM sees the academia as one of the most promising markets for the new system. It says the system also enables high- volume direct mail campaigns to be customized for each recipient with user-specific content printed on the fly. PS Extreme enables large PostScript files to be processed – which in these circle is called RIPping, or raster image processing, very quickly and in parallel. Existing PostScript systems require that every page of a document be RIPped sequentially, even if only say pages 217 and 320 of a 500 page document are required. PS Extreme means that relatively small print runs of books – under 1,500 copies – can be done cheaply. No longer do documents have to be sent off for traditional off-set printing. They can be printed on a digital presses. The system itself isn’t going to come to your home or small business anytime soon. The PS Extreme software costs $30,000 and works in conjunction with a new controller fitted to a high-end RS/6000 server a plus fast black and white printer. The combination sells for $780,000 as the 600 dpi InfoPrint 4000 system. Color versions will follow. IBM claims the configuration can print 424 pages per minute with variable content and graphics. Content can be stored as Adobe PDF files for re-use, on demand, at any time, rather than as proprietary print-ready formats.
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