Saturday, January 23, 2010

Just when the smoke was clearing, a new player cames to the States. MGI and they speak Twitter!

If all the globals could learn to speak twitter it would be so much easier for everyone to figure out how to get from here to there.

It started about 15 hours ago. I came across an interesting post at @mbossed.

@ToughLoveforX . He is @MGI_USA .

I said:
Did you know that @socialprintexp is built on the MGI press. Convo going on now at @mbossed || Ain't Fridays grand?

@Socialprintexpo Any thoughts/ links? to why did 15 customers buy an MGI press over an #HP Indigo?" Digital Print 360

Then I got an email notification that @MGI_USA was "following".
I said:
@MGI_USA Thanks for the follow and welcome to the States:-) Maybe you can explain why what's so cool about MGI?

He said:
@ToughLoveforX Sure! 1.Substrates (paper, plastics, ENVELOPES) 2. Up to 13 x 47" size 3. Laser-safe 4. No click charge 5. Outstanding color

I said:
@MGI_USA " 4. No click charge" 13 x 47 ? very, very cool. Got anything EZ on TCO? inkjet not toner? Needs conditioned air space?

He said:
@ToughLoveforX presses are dry toner, although an inkjet press for card apps is out late 2010 - std climate & hum. control, no chiller req.

@ToughLoveforX that's just our Meteor DP60 Pro digital press - we also have the JETvarnish digital inkjet spot UV coater + other finishing

I said:
@MGI_USA got a vid anywhere?

He said:

@ToughLoveforX check out our Web site for vids:

I said:
@MGI_USA thanks for link I really like "MGI’s My PhotoBook Shop"

Then I RT'ed.
The City of Cincinnati talks about their MGI Meteor DP60 Pro in the Nov issue of In-Plant Graphics:

MGI USA adds 3 more dealers to US network:

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Custom Textbooks Created on HP Equipment

By now it's no longer a new story. But here's another data point on the opportunity for versioned print in education. Soon someone will scale personalized (in addition to the versioned) Then someone will add QR or other 2d codes.

Then some high school admin somewhere is going to see the value of personalized print + QR to increase attendance and behavior compliance with a minimally invasive intervention.

Then we can all move on to even more interesting problems.

The full story is at Global Print Monitor

"Making the grade in educational publishing

As public schools across the US strive to improve education for all students, the needs of individual states, districts and schools become apparent. Mercury Print Productions found a way to address these needs by creating customised textbooks with the new HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press.

'Because of the No Child Left Behind Act, a school's funding is somewhat dependent on students' test scores,' explains Christian Schamberger, vice president of operations, Mercury Print Productions. 'The ability to customise textbooks to ensure students learn what they need to can help improve test scores and secure the school's funding.'"

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Screen to launch Indigo rival at Ipex

Just when I thought I had the players figured, here comes Screen with an inkjet to go against the Indigo. I keep looking for stories about the Screen Inkjet at AlphaGraphics printing American editions of the Daily Mail newspaper. None have gotten on my radar since the first stories many months.

If anyone has some info, please leave a comment.

Anyway's here's the snippet from Proprint. Details at the click:
"Screen will use Ipex 2010 for the commercial launch of the Truepress JetSX – a B2 inkjet press that has already attracted 'a fair bit of interest' here in Australia."

It's time to Stop Evangelizing and Start Selling.

From the inside it seems that the job is to "convince" and "educate" end users about the value of print and 2d codes. As usual, if you take a glance outside it seems that "convincing and education" are no longer needed.

This morning I found this one. I don't want to turn this into a long post, so I won't belabor the the point. If you're interested follow me at twitter @toughloveforx . In between my relentless pursuit of those who are going to fix high school dropouts, I tweet examples of QR and other 2d codes being used in the real world.

It's the beginning of a land grab. No "education" or "evangelizing" needed in a land grab.

Mobile provides instant interaction with consumers - Mobile Marketer - Advertising:
"Bar code branding
Text-message opt-ins are far from the only way to engage consumers. Another option? Mobile bar codes.

Scanbuy Inc. has launched a number of products for brands such as American Airlines, Volkswagen and Sprint with the use of bar codes.

“Mobile barcodes are an extremely easy and trackable way to mobilize any traditional media from print to packaging,” said Jonathan Bulkeley, CEO of Scanbuy, New York. “In our experience, the keys to getting results are to give the consumer something of value and communicate clearly with a strong call-to-action."

Monday, January 18, 2010

Who would have thought that a Cable Channel would go into the textbook business. And the opportunity for Print.

About a half hour ago I found this in my twitter stream.
cmt1 DigitalContent vs textbooks

So then I said this:
Indianapolis Public Schools Replace Textbooks with Digital Content | Precisely the opprtnty for #Xerox+espresso & #MPS.
Looking a bit more, I got to this:
Did you know that Discovery Communications LLC. has replaced textbooks in Indianapolis
and then this:
A cable channel replaces textbooks in Indianopolis Discovery Edu is a subsidiary of Discover Communications, LLC.

The point for print
If you ask any classroom teacher they will tell you that the idea of replacing print with online is a figment of some politician's imagination. Sounds good, but it will not scale at least for a long time

Discovery Communications LLC has taken their long tail of content, focused on making money from education, not donating to education.

Consider the long tail at PBS or NPR or Nat Geo or the Then consider the long tail at every serious newspaper in the States. Put that together with Xerox + Espresso or with any MFP that can seemlessly transfer XML to print streams.

Then think about what it would mean to add personalized QR and shortened URLs: Information exchange data from teaching with no teacher time needed.

I'll leave the rest to your imagination.

If I were HP, Oce, Ricoh, Riso and had to respond to Xerox + Espresso, what I would do ...

It's going to be an interesting week. The conversation at Print Ceo is starting for real.

The vulnerability of the Espresso is that, as I understand it, it is PDF based. The network agreements that Jason Epstein has put together with publishers is a very defensible value. But the amount of content in PDF is dwarfed many times over by the content in XML.

Wikipedia is in XML. PediaPress in Germany has been selling Wikipedia in Print for many years. Obviously they have a done a deal with wikipedia to share some of the value. From what I can see, the books ordered by Pedia Press customers is for a very narrow market. And the production model is print and distribute. I believe that Oce is the output device.

But, the Xerox + Espresso turns that paradigm on it's head. Any book, any where, any time has gone from a vision to one more way that digital print can change the world.

At any rate, here's my two cents:
Partner with the best XML to digital print stream people you can find. Get the engineers to add some binding to the MFP. If it were me, I would do it faster, rather than slower.

Xerox + Espresso is not about the box. The value is the Network.

This morning, I came across this:
@proprint Xerox to sell Espresso Book Machine: Xerox has signed an agreement to sell the Espresso Book Machine
Replying to a comment to yesterday's post I said,

I agree that if the name of the game was selling boxes it's not a big deal. But the way I read the releases Xerox will be selling the Espresso, not merely supplying the boxes.

That's a much bigger deal.

The defensible value of the Espresso are the contracts that Jason Epstein has made with the publishers. Once those are in place, I agree that the machinery can be easily replicated by any other vendor.

With Xerox's purchase of ACS they have made it crystal clear that going forward the value is MPS. If Xerox is the channel for selling expresso how hard would it be to role in a special deal for including an Espresso as part of an MPS contract?

Consider if Xerox adds an Espresso to their offerings in education and government MPS. I would keep a look out to see if they get one of the school book publishers to come on board. If and I think when they do, it means customized textbooks delivered with no logistics and very little sales expense directly to the school building or district.

Ursula and her team realize that margins on boxes and toner are going to be very slim. But margins on MPS are defensible and supply a nice stream of recurring revenue.

In a tweet this am I said this:
in Queensland: stdnts are publishing their books as part of the govs project. || With #Xerox+Espresso it would be EZ.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

My bet is that the Espresso Deal will do for Xerox what the Docutech did back in the day.

The conversation started on Friday with the announcement that Xerox will be selling the Espresso. On Friday Noel Ward did a story at GAM and reported in the UK. On Saturday, Cary Sherburne did a post at PrintCEO. All of the stories are well worth the read.

At any rate, here's my two cents at PrintCeo.

When I saw the announcement it recalled the feeling I had when I saw the first story about the Docutech in the Wall Street Journal.

It seems that this deal is the docutech reinvented for a networked society. The money sentence to me is “we believe fully distributed solutions will become an integral part of the supply chain.”

It’s the same idea of a mature “distribute and print” model the industry has been talking about for years. But until the web matured it was a vision instead of a strategy.

O’Reilly has said that the web is now moving into the real world. He calls it “Web squared.” QR codes are an on ramp from the print to the web. The Espresso/Xerox deal is one off ramp from the web to print.

One can only assume that once the Xerox engineers take a really close look at the output box, it will get more and more efficient. One can also safely assume that if Xerox sales gets involved it will get less and less expensive.

One interesting question going forward is how Xerox will integrate selling Espresso with their PSPs. The natural would be to sell through the MFP channel.

I’m hoping they are figuring out a method to use their Premier Partners to add the Espresso offering to increase the PP value to their clients.