KDP v6n6 November/December 2001 The Kleper Report on Digital Publishing - Issue 6.6 November / December 2001

Issue 6.6 November / December 2001

This issue of KDP is sponsored by:


Feature Review: Franklin eBookMan (WIN )

The Franklin eBookMan. The Franklin eBookMan was designed specifically to be a multi-function e-book reading device. As such, both its hardware and software were created to support on-screen reading. Its operating system is not factory installed, and must be downloaded by the user, along with core applications, through the use of an Internet-enabled host PC, and transferred to the eBookMan. While this process may be time-consuming, it does ensure that the user has the latest version of the software (which has been updated since its introduction).

The eBookMan connects to its host through USB (although an optional serial kit is available), using either a direct cable connection or a more convenient cradle. The cradle can remain connected to the PC, making connections faster, and maintaining the device on a convenient viewing angle so that the user can monitor data transfers.

The user interacts with the eBookMan using the eBookMan Desktop Manager, an application that is used both for synchronizing the device with data stored on the PC, and for transferring data in either direction. It uses a two pane display, one a Contents Pane, the other the Device Pane.

The synchronizing process, called Intellisync, supports the import, export, and synchronization of files between the user's PC organizer program and the eBookMan organizer programs. Out-of-the-box the eBookMan can sync with MS Outlook® 98 and higher, and at additional cost the user can upgrade to sync with MS Outlook Express 4.X, Lotus Notes® 5.0, Lotus Organizer 5.0, and Act! 2000.

Among the functions performed by the eBookMan Desktop Manager is the option to purchase and manage e-books from the Franklin Web site. Account information is maintained at Franklin so that purchased books can be recovered should they be unwittingly erased from the user's computer and eBookMan. The Desktop Manager also performs several other important functions such as:
* Providing access to newer versions of eBookMan software
* Accessing technical support resources
* Purchasing new e-book titles
* Downloading Mobipocket Web Companion eNews content for reading on the Mobipocket Reader. In addition to news, Mobipocket Reader supports text, html, and Palm documents (.pdb and .prc) files.

The eBookMan's reading application is the Franklin Reader, which requires content that is formatted as Franklin Universal Binary (.fub) files. The device only allows the transfer of file formats that it can recognize and use. These include: html (.htm), mp3, txt, fub, prc, and pdb. The device also has audio capabilities for playing MP3 files (converting them first into the eBookMan music format), listening to Audible Books (www.audible.com), and recording voice memos.

The eBookMan hardware has been optimized for the manipulation and display of reading matter, and for interacting with, and entering, content. The screen, which comprises a major portion of the front panel, is touch-sensitive, and is used with a stylus to make selections, perform commands, or enter data. The Control Pad area, directly below the screen display, includes touch-sensitive areas for accessing applications and menus, scrolling through a multi-screen display, and entering characters using handwriting.

The back of the unit includes a Control Wheel which serves both as a scrolling mechanism, when moved up or down, and as an Enter key when depressed. A headphone jack is provided for listening privately to music, audio books, or voice memos, and a speaker for amplifying the sound directly from the eBookMan. The MMC port supports the use of MultiMediaCard media for storing additional data.

Most applications and files that are stored in the eBookMan are accessed using the Launcher, which provides an iconic view of the device contents. Application icons appear on a dark background, and content icons, appear on a light background. The bottom of the Launcher provides a status indication of battery strength, the time, the category of items being displayed, and the amount of available memory.

At the heart of the eBookMan applications is the Franklin Reader, the software that enables the reading of e-books. Franklin Reader is the preferred reader for structured e-books (e.g. reference books) due to its fast, advanced search, indexing and spell correction technology whereas MobiReader is the preferred reader for unstructured e-books (e.g. fiction, non-fiction, periodicals, HTML and text). Franklin Reader provides these functions:
* Opening and closing e-books
* Opening e-book chapters, sections, or divisions
* Searching for words or phrases
* Marking text
* Adding notes to e-books
* Setting preferences
* Navigating through an e-book
* Getting help

While within an e-book the user can move forward or backward, a screen at a time, or directly to the beginning or end. They can return to the listing of the current e-book contents, or to the booklist of all installed e-books. The reader can set the preferences they would like for a specific title, including the home view, the reading mode (margins and justification), the font size (large or small), the use of scroll bars, and the text orientation (portrait or landscape). Special symbols are used throughout the e-book text to indicate special content, such as a footnote, graphic or figure, or bibliographic entry. The content associated with such a maker is viewed by tapping it with the stylus. After viewing, the user is returned to the previous text by tapping the Return icon.

Users can add bookmarks from any text view by selecting the Edit|Add Bookmark menu selection. The title of the current section of text appears highlighted in a New Bookmark screen. The user can enter up to 100 characters. After the Bookmark screen has been saved, a bookmark icon will appear beside the selected text in the e-book.

Additional features of the eBookMan include those that would be common to a personal digital assistant (PDA). These include:
* A Music Player
* Address Book
* Date Book
* ToDo Book
* Memo Book
* Calculator

$129 to $229.95

Contact: Franklin Electronic Publishers, One Franklin Plaza, Burlington, NJ 08016-4907, 800-266-5626, http://www.franklin.com, fax: 609 239-5948.

DTP Reviews

PageMaker 7.0 (MAC/WIN)
Adobe PageMaker 7.0 is the latest version of one of the first, and certainly one of the most significant, desktop publishing programs every produced. Introduced coincident with Adobe PostScript, the Apple LaserWriter, and the Apple Macintosh, Aldus PageMaker 1.0 was the application that defined a new market, and, almost single-handedly eclipsed the professional typesetting industry. The program has long been a favorite in the corporate market, and the newest incarnation aims squarely at serving the needs of business users.

Adobe, which purchased PageMaker from Aldus, is positioning PageMaker in the business publishing market, for users who would be most comfortable using prepared templates, but who may have the skill or the ambition to use page design tools. They position InDesign for the professional design market, and FrameMaker for the corporate publisher.

As with PageMaker 6.5 Plus, Version 7.0 includes a respectable amount of digital content in the form of 4700 stock illustrations (in JPEG and Adobe Illustrator formats), 300 high-resolution photographs, and more than 150 high-quality Adobe Type 1 fonts. Of special use to the non-professional designer is the inclusion of hundreds of pre-designed templates for newsletters, brochures, flyers, etc. into which the user can simply place their graphics and text and produce a professional-looking piece.

PageMaker has had a special appeal to those who are familiar with the paste-up process, since elements on the page can be moved freely and independently, providing a great deal of design flexibility. In addition, the user has the option of using frames and layers to achieve a wide variety of layout alternatives.

Files from competing products, such as QuarkXPress and Microsoft Publisher, can be opened directly, providing improved compatibility for service bureaus, and an easy migration path for salvaging and maintaining legacy files. In addition, native Photoshop files, native Illustrator files, and PDF files can be placed directly on any PageMaker page.

Perhaps the most significant new feature of PageMaker 7, which was released on July 11, 2001, is its Data Merge capability. Data merge is a practical process that incorporates variable data, such as product names and prices, along with a static background image, such as a catalog page template. It is very useful for producing business cards, certificates, catalog pages, direct mail, and other forms of personalized printing. A similar kind of process, called variable data printing (VDP), is the driving force behind the use and acceptance of digital color presses. The major difference between data merge and VDP is that pages generated from the data merge process require that the entire contents of each page be individually RIPped, whereas, pages generated from a VDP program, RIP the background image only once, and then only the variable data for each page thereafter. The result is that VDP jobs are smaller, and RIP and print much fasterŠa necessary consideration to keep digital presses running at their highest rated speeds.

The process for executing data merge is worth noting since it will be unfamiliar to PageMaker users, and others. The first requirement is that data must be in a comma delimited format. This format is easily derived from a database, spreadsheet, or a manually composed file created in a text editor or word processor. The second requirement is that the first line of the file must contain the field names. If there is an image field name, then it must be preceded by an \"@\". The file is imported through PageMaker's Data Merge window.

The data merge process presumes that multiple versions of a single document design will be produced. Therefore the user must first use PageMaker's tools to create the base (static) document. The document may be created partially or entirely from within PageMaker, or may be imported in whole or in part from virtually any source, since PageMaker is very adept at handling a wide range of file types. Next, the data source is selected and imported. The variable fields are placed within the text by double-clicking their names in the Data Merge window.

Images that are part of the variable data stream are placed and positioned by double-clicking the image field name. This results in the display of a resizable, repositionable image box that serves as a placeholder for each merged image.

Pages can be previewed by selecting the Preview box at the bottom of the Data Merge window, and stepping through the records. The process ensures that every page looks right, and that exceptionally long or short data strings do not violate the integrity of the page design.

After the job has been proofed, to ensure that it is correctly composed, the record content can be merged with the static page. During this process a new page is created from each merged record. The file is saved and the job is printed. $499

Contact: Adobe Systems Inc., 345 Park Ave., San Jose, CA 95110-2704, 408 536-6000, http://www.adobe.com, fax: 408 537-6000.

The PrintShop Deluxe 11 (WIN )
The PrintShop Deluxe 11 is the latest version of this venerable program of 15 years. Introduced for the Apple II in 1984/85, the program was among the first to simply the process of combining text and graphics for the production of personally published items such as stationery. Today, with sales of over 16 million copies, it is easily among the best-selling desktop publishing programs of all time.

The program, which supports Web publishing as well as print, includes 10,000 professionally designed layouts and 180,000 images. The easy-to-use interface guides the user through the process of creating a wide variety of printed and on-line materials, such as greeting cards, newsletters, brochures, letterheads, and on-line photo albums. Not only can a user personalize material with their own photos and images, but, if at a loss of words, they can select from more than 2000 ready-to-use sentiments.

The PrintShop Deluxe 11 is enhanced with links to Broderbund's Expressit.com site where the user benefits from additional content, services and features. Users can have their creations printed professionally and delivered right to their door. $99.99

Contact: Broderbund LLC, 500 Redwood Blvd., Novato, CA 94947, 415 382-4400, http://www.expressit.com.

Productivity Reviews

WordSmith (PILOT)
WordSmith is considered among the most sophisticated word processors available for the Palm OS. It is distinguished by the following capabilities: support for several text styles, including bold, underline, italics, superscript, subscript, strikethrough, color fonts and color backgrounds; word, line, and paragraph selection by tapping on a word and holding; multi-paste, providing access to the last ten copy operations; an enhanced memo pad for rapid memo writing (4K limit and no formatting); full, left, right or center justification; and more. Digital publishers who depend on their Palm device for input can benefit greatly from this software since it provides for capturing formatting that other text input programs can not. $39.95

Contact: Blue Nomad, LLC, 4 Hyde St., Redwood City, CA 94062, 650 361-8367, http://www.bluenomad.com, fax: 413 740-8375.

Addition / Extension Reviews

Badia BigPicture XT (MAC)
Badia BigPicture XT is a QuarkXTension that provides the user with valuable information regarding virtually every aspect of every picture that appears in a given document. In addition to displaying detailed specifications, it supports link management and image file accessibility.

The Picture Usage List, which appears in the single BigPicture window, provides an all-inclusive view of the characteristics associated with every picture in the document, including its page, name, file size, format, color model, resolution, effective resolution (if it has been resized), creator, associated fonts (eps), colors, and status. The status indicates if the picture is OK, missing, or modified.

When a picture listing is selected, its thumbnail appears in the bottom of the window, along with its name, dimensions, modification date, and path. Optionally this area of the screen can be used to display a contact sheet of up to 32 selected images. The user can select from buttons that will show a selected image in the document, reveal it in the Finder, edit it with its creator application, or rename it. In addition, there are several options for managing its link, including replacing the image with another. Like all Badia XTensions, this one is well-planned and well-executed, and well worth the price. $59.99

Contact: Badia Software, 81 Penbroke St., Unit 2, Toronto, ON M5A 2N9, Canada, 416 926-1817, http://www.badiaxt.com, fax: 416 926-8225.

EtchTone (MAC/WIN)
EtchTone is a Photoshop compatible plug-in that is capable of converting a grayscale or color illustration or photograph into a \"classic old printing look,\" reminescent of steel etching. The filter can be used either to Overlay the etch or Blend it with a continuous tone image. The user can adjust the amount of etch, and the mix of etch pattern and original image. In addition, the user can adjust the sharpness, brightness and contrast of the original image. $89

Contact: Andromeda Software, Inc., 699 Hampshire Road, Ste. 109, Thousand Oaks, CA 91361, 805 379-4109, 800 547-0055, http://www.andromeda.com, fax: 805 379-5253.

CD-ROM Reviews

Inside Editing with Final Cut Pro 2 (MAC/WIN)
Inside Editing with Final Cut Pro 2 Platinum Edition consists of a set of three CD-ROMs, composed of two hyperCD instructional discs, and one project disc. The instructional program, which is led by Zak Tucker, a professional digital videographer, covers most of the operation of Apple Final Cut Pro 2 through the production of two sample commercial spots. Mr. Tucker takes the student through each aspect of the production process, explaining the purpose and operation of every step, and showing shortcuts and expert tips and techniques.

Each lesson deals succinctly with a major topic, from workstation set-up to output, and consists of a series of related presentations. The topics deal not only with the step-by-step production of the two commercial spots, but the organization and management of the components that compose any video production. Mr. Tucker speaks authoritatively on the entire video production process, and is very impressive to watch as he shares his thoughts and insights regarding each decision point. The package is an excellent course of instruction for anyone new to Final Cut Pro 2 or the process of nonlinear digital editing.

All of the files that are used in the example videos are provided on disc so that the student can edit them on their own system.

An advantage of the on-disc training is that the user proceeds at their own pace, repeating and reviewing sections as necessary.

The video is viewed through a Web browser window, and requires an Internet connection. The hyperCD technology, which serves as a copy protection scheme, requires that the user is connected to the Magnet Media site in order to view the media. $199.99 plus s/h

Contact: Magnet Media, Inc., 104 West 14th St., 5th Fl., New York, NY 10011, 877 606-5012, http://www.digitalmediatraining.com.

Inside Macromedia Dreamweaver: Moving from FrontPage (MAC/WIN)
\"Inside Macromedia Dreamweaver: Moving from FrontPage\" is a set of two CD-ROMs comprising three hours of instruction. The instructor, Joseph Lowry, author of the Dreamweaver Bible, has done a masterful job of presenting all of the major capabilities of Dreamweaver, with an emphasis on the process of moving from FrontPage. Although FrontPage is listed as a part of the title, the program is of value for any Dreamweaver user. The major topics include: Introduction to the Interface, Defining a Site, Working with Text, Adding Images, Creating Links, Using Layout View, Previewing Your Page, Adding Interactivity, Including Library Items, Using Templates and Reports, and Publishing Your Pages.

Mr. Lowry is an accomplished speaker, and a polished presenter, who clearly and concisely introduces each lesson. He shows how the program can be most effectively used to create and maintain a sophisticated Web site.

The hyperCD discs require an Internet connection in order to unscramble the copy-protection. Additional resources are available via the Web. $99.99 plus p/h

Contact: Magnet Media, Inc., 104 West 14th St., 5th Fl., New York, NY 10011, 877 606-5012, http://www.digitalmediatraining.com.

Easy CD Creator 5 Platinum (WIN )
Easy CD Creator 5 Platinum is a complete solution for burning CDs composed of music, data, photos, or video. Music-related capabilities include the addition of an MP3 encoder, as well as support for converting vinyl records and cassette tapes into digital formats (Spin Doctor). Users can also convert MP3 songs into play-anywhere CDs, and enhance the sound quality of MP3 files. Photo-related capabilities include the creation of multimedia discs that can be viewed on any compatible device without special software. Video-related features include VideoImpression for editing video clips and adding voice-overs. Data-related features include Direct CD for drag-and-drop convenience, and Take Two, for creating an exact image of a hard drive. Other features include software to design and produce custom CD labels, create video postcards, link to Internet music providers, balance loudness for songs from different sources, and much more. $99.95

Contact: Roxio, Inc., 6900 Wedgwood Road, Suite 200, Maple Grove, MN 55311, 763 494-7240, http://www.roxio.com, fax: 763 494-7301.

Internet Reviews

SliceAndDice(TM) (MAC)
SliceAndDice(TM) is a Mac OS X application for easily converting images into Web pages with links and optional rollovers. The program presents a clean yet sophisticated interface for dividing an image into parts that will become clickable, and lead to other Web pages and resources. The user can easily slice an image into any size pieces, and then add the appropriate Web links. In this manner, navigation bars and image maps can be constructed quickly and intelligently. The user can also control compression, interlacing, and dithering. $49 (normally $129)

Contact: Stone Design Corp., 2400 Rio Grande Blvd. NW pmb 116, Albuquerque, NM 87107, 505 345-4800, http://www.stone.com.

PhotoToWeb (MAC)
PhotoToWeb for Mac OS X is certainly the most complete and easy-to-use Web photo album publishing application to date. It supports the creation of Web-based slide shows composed of user images that are dragged-and-dropped into the program. Images can be renamed, and both a caption and story can be attached to each. Images can be rotated, cropped, reordered, and arranged for display in a variety of viewing formats. The user can add transition effects and select the speed and the delay between slides. A navigation bar is automatically included, and the user has their choice of table of contents formats. In addition, custom HTML can be added. $69 (normally $129)

Contact: Stone Design Corp., 2400 Rio Grande Blvd. NW pmb 116, Albuquerque, NM 87107, 505 345-4800, http://www.stone.com.

Utility Reviews

Text Cleaner 2.0 (MAC)
Text Cleaner 2.0 is an essential text handling utility that handles numerous kinds of conversions and text substitutions in a single operation, executing as many iterations as necessary to complete the task. This new version is up to 300% faster. It makes short work of cleaning up customer text that contains unwanted characters, such as double spaces and multiple returns, or that does not contain required characters, such as ligatures and curly quotes. Unlike the find and replace functions in other text handling programs, Text Cleaner handles multiple changes at once, and automatically reprocesses until all changes have been made.

Text Cleaner runs within the Panorama database engine (http://www.provue.com). The interface is very straight forward, with many operations executed as the result of simply checking a box, such as \"Multiple spaces to single space,\" \"Double hyphen to em dash,\" and \"3 periods to ellipsis.\" Up to five instances of \"Change\" and \"To\" can be input in the blank fields. Text can also be deleted by only filling in the \"Change' field, and leaving the \"To\" field blank.

Text can be cleaned by copying it to the Clipboard and cleaning the Clipboard, opening a text file, dragging and dropping a file over the DropClean icon, or cleaning text from within QuarkXPress. Presets can be saved for reuse. A lite version, with a 32K text size limit, and other disabled features, is available for free. $79

Contact: Studio 405, 6930 Carroll Ave., Suite 710, Takoma Park, MD 20912, 301 270-8445, http://www.studio405.com, e-mail: info@studio405.com, fax: 301 270-8446.

ShredIt (MAC)
ShredIt is a utility program that ensures that deleted files, folders, or free disk space is void of recoverable data. Even with files are deleted by placing them in the trash can, they can be recovered until they are overwritten. Files processed through ShredIt are permanently removed. $15

Contact: Mireth Technology, #201 - 465 East Broadway, Vancouver BC, Canada V5T 1W9, http://www.mireth.com.

NetShred (MAC)
NetShred is a useful utility that permanently deletes vestiges of Web browser sessions, namely the browser cache, history and e-mail trash. It prevents others from getting information about the prior user's browsing habits. It can be run manually or set to execute automatically whenever the browser is closed. $15

Contact: Mireth Technology, #201 - 465 East Broadway, Vancouver BC, Canada V5T 1W9, http://www.mireth.com.

MacVCD is a software video CD player that senses and supports the presence of the Video CD format. It is sufficiently vigorous to support full-screen , high-resolution, large monitors. $10

Contact: Mireth Technology, #201 - 465 East Broadway, Vancouver BC, Canada V5T 1W9, http://www.mireth.com.

TimeEqualsMoney(TM) (MAC)
TimeEqualsMoney(TM) is a Mac OS X application that provides accurate accounting of time expenditures for specific projects. It is an invaluable aid for consultants and others who charge directly for their time. Unlike other time accounting programs, this one not only keeps account of all activities related to a specific project, but produces calculated invoices, with a company logo; or exports the data for use in a spreadsheet or database. Invoices can also be saved to disk or sent as e-mail. $49 (normally $129)

Contact: Stone Design Corp., 2400 Rio Grande Blvd. NW pmb 116, Albuquerque, NM 87107, 505 345-4800, http://www.stone.com.

PackUp&Go(TM) (MAC)
PackUp&Go(TM) is a Mac OS X application that provides drag-and-drop access to standard Unix file compression utilities. Shareware, $15.

Contact: Stone Design Corp., 2400 Rio Grande Blvd. NW pmb 116, Albuquerque, NM 87107, 505 345-4800, http://www.stone.com.

Zik's Utilities (MAC)
Zik's software consists of four shareware utilities that are useful for most Macintosh users. First is PrefsOverload 3.1.1, a program that can eliminate unnecessary or potentially damaged preferences files. This is useful not only because it can save valuable disk space, but more importantly, can remove corrupted files that may stop its associated application from running. $15

Second is ClipWorks 2.0.1 which gives the user the capability to edit their clipboard contents, either text or graphic, before it is pasted into its target location. It provides tools for modifying text, such as fixing spaces, and for modifying graphics by applying a filter, such as blur. $10

Third is AliasMultiplier 2.0.1, a simple yet powerful program that empowers a single alias to open multiple files. The user simply drags over the application icon the items that he or she wants to open, and saves the alias. Clicking on the new alias will launch the files. The user can modify the launch-order at any time. The program does not require System Extensions nor Control Panels. $7

Fourth is ExtensionsTracker 1.1 a program that keeps track of all installed extensions and control panels, and simplifies the process of removing a new system addition that may be causing start-up problems. $10

All of the utilities can be purchased in a package for $25.

Contact: Zik's Software, http://www.ziksw.com.

FileMaker Pro 5.5 Unlimited (MAC/WIN)
FileMaker Pro 5.5 Unlimited extends the database publishing capabilities of FileMaker Pro 5.5 by removing the limit of the number of Web browsers (10 unique IP addresses) that can access a FileMaker Pro database on the Web. The program provides two Web database publishing options. First is the Web Companion for instant publishing via an intranet or the Internet. Second is the Java-based FileMaker Web Server Connector providing improved performance, load balancing, and data security via IIS 5 and Apache Web Servers. This option enables a user to apply multiple copies of the software to create a \"redundant array of inexpensive computers\" (RAIC) that provides \"scalable load balancing and fail-over fault tolerance for greater data availability.\" It also enables FileMaker to make use of Web Server plug-ins and other features such as SSL (Secure Socket Layer) and server-side includes.

The FileMaker Web Server Connector is a Java servlet that runs on a company's main Web server and relays requests from Web servers to one or more computers running FileMaker Pro 5.5 Unlimited. It allows FileMaker Pro to interoperate with a customer's existing Web Server.

The program enables users to publish their desktop databases in a form virtually identical in appearance on the Web. This is accomplished with just a few keystrokes, and with no special skills, the need to write HTML, or utilize third-party applications. The databases can be used both to share information that is already within the database, and to collect new information. This unlimited version also includes Developer Web tools which were previously sold separately. FileMaker Pro has a reputation as the preferred database program for database publishing projects.

FileMaker Pro 5.5 Unlimited provides unprecedented ease for rapid application development and prototyping. Users benefit from pre-defined formats, Instant Web Publishing, and approximately 20 different professionally designed color and background themes. Despite its ease of use, highly sophisticated applications have been developed, including The Smithsonian Institution's project to publish 2,000,000 images over the Web. $999

Contact: FileMaker, Inc., 5201 Patrick Henry Drive, Box 58168, Santa Clara, CA 95052-8168, 800 325-2747, 408 987-7000, 408 727-8227, http://www.filemaker.com.

Multimedia Reviews

Groboto 1.0 (MAC)
Groboto 1.0 is a weird and wonderful drawing program that exists in its own 3D world of shapes, dimensions, relationships, and colors. The bot tools are automated, taking on the behaviors that the user selects, and interacting with what has already been drawn. The potential for creativity is enormous. It is actually difficult not to create a complex and compelling painting, and it is highly likely that it will attract attention and curiosity, if not awe.

One of the most impressive features of the program is the way in which cylindrical objects can be drawn through others, like a steamfitter connecting a water supply system. The program also has the means to simulate gravity, wind, magnets, momentum, resistance, and other physical forces. When creatively applied these functions can be used to create machines, experiments and simple games.

Mere words can not describe what it can create and how easily it can create stunning geometric worlds. The publisher suggests that anyone from 8 to 108 can enjoy the program, although even younger children are likely to be captivated. The works of art can be exported as PICT files, QuickTime movies, or in several different 3D file formats, as well as printed out. $29

Contact: Braid, 5360 Seven Oaks Dr., Colorado Springs, CO 80919, 719 533-0407, http://www.braid.com, http://www.groboto.com.

Create (MAC)
Create for Mac OS X is a full-featured page layout program that treats every element as an object. Pages are arranged using drag-and-drop simplicity, and a full range of drawing primatives, effects, and tools are provided in a sophisticated print and Web page publishing application.

The program is the first of a new breed of powerful, elegant and highly productive tools for Mac OS X. It incorporates all of the capabilities that earmark a high-end publishing system such as: table groups; flexible fills and outlines; autotracer; animator; pattern editor; page layers; embedded videos, sound, animated GIFs, and custome HTML; SliceAndDice (TM) navigation bars and rollovers; nested, editable tables for complete layout control links on any graphics and text; multi-page layout; date and page markers; guides and templates; linked text; AppleScript control; and much more.

Digital publishers should take a close look at the full feature set of this program (http://www.stone.com/Create/Create.html) and consider how it can serve their production needs, especially in the rapid composition of design-intensive Web sites. $149 (normally $695)

Contact: Stone Table Software, POB 66831, Scotts Valley, CA 95067, http://www.designwrite.com, e-mail: sts@designwrite.com.

PStill(TM) (MAC)
PStill(TM) is a Mac OS X application that converts EPS and PostScript documents into PDF format. It has several high-end features which provide the user with exceptional flexibility. These include: conversion to CMYK, font subsetting, handling of both Type 1 and Type 3 fonts, automatic embedding of unincludable fonts as paths or bitmaps, user-selectable resolution of 72 to 600 dpi, settable page size, reverse page ordering, and more. The user can also set-up a watched folder for automatic PDF conversion. $69 (normally $129)

Contact: Stone Design Corp., 2400 Rio Grande Blvd. NW pmb 116, Albuquerque, NM 87107, 505 345-4800, http://www.stone.com.

Video Compression with Cleaner 5 (MAC/WIN)
Video Compression with Cleaner 5 is a DVD (also available at extra cost in VHS format) containing approximately three hours of content presented by Evan Schechtman, an Apple Solutions Expert, and co-founder of Outpost Digital, a digital post-production house in New York City. The disc contains an in-depth look at the use of Terran Cleaner 5 for producing effective compressed video in QuickTime, Real Video and Windows Media formats. Mr. Schechtman covers both the use of the Cleaner 5 Wizard Interface and advanced settings. Numerous examples clearly illustrate the effects of various settings. $99.99 plus s/h

Contact: Magnet Media, Inc., 104 West 14th St., 5th Fl., New York, NY 10011, 877 606-5012, http://www.digitalmediatraining.com.

SkunkLab's Liquid Media (WIN )
SkunkLab's Liquid Media is a nimble, flexible and powerful presentation program that incorporates several sophisticated multimedia capabilities in one package. It competes with programs such as PowerPoint, Presenter, Flash, Shockwave and After Effects, and compares favorably in both features and price.

The program provides a WYSIWYG editing interface in which \"actors\" (or objects) can be placed or dragged-and-dropped onto the stage. A presentation is composed of two or more scenes, which are comparable to slides. The scenes can be presented in sequential order, as is traditional, or can be programmed to appear in virtually any order. The actors in each scene follow editable paths and can be given defined behaviors. Actors can be graphic objects or strings of text. The only limit to the number of actors, paths and special effects is the vigor of the host computer. A trial copy is available at http://www.skunkies.com. $150

Contact: Binary Software, 2118 Wilshire Blvd. 900, Santa Monica, CA 90403, 310 449-1481, 800-8-BINARY (824-6279), http://www.binarysoft.com, email: @binarysoft.com, fax 800-555-7217 or 310-449-1473.

FlipAlbum Professional 4.0 (WIN )
FlipAlbum Professional 4.0 is an innovative e-book application that enables users to create digital photo albums that utilize the E-Book 3D page-flipping interface. Page-flipping, in the form of patented \"Digital Flip\" technology enables users to experience the sensation of turning pages on the computer screen in a fashion resembling that of turning pages in an actual book. Page-flipping adds a significant realistic element to the e-book reading experience.

FlipAlbum 4.0 enables users to compose pages of multiple objects, i.e. images, annotations, multimedia files, etc. Users can publish FlipAlbums and have the software automatically layout the pictures onto album pages, and generate overview pages consisting of thumbnails, a table of contents, and an index. The album also represents an animated page-thickness on the side of the album, and bookmarks assist the reader in locating previously viewed pages.

FlipAlbums can be Web-enabled, so that they can be shared on the Internet. Other features include drag-and-drop editing; centerfold view for display in either single or double page mode; a selection of book spines, themes, and clipart for photo albums; fully scalable book size with automatic resizing of images and text; and support for MP3 in addition to .wav and .midi. $149.95

Contact: E-Book Systems, Inc., 1500 Wyatt Drive, Suite 15, Santa Clara, CA 95054, 408 919-6675, http://www.flipalbum.com, fax: 408 919-6677.

Digital Imaging Reviews

Pinnacle Express DV (WIN )
Pinnacle Express DV is a low-cost software/hardware solution for entering the digital video arena. If you are jealous of your Mac-using friends who can easily turn their home movies into DVD's, then this package is for you. Pinnacle Systems brings iDVD-like functionality and Mac-like simplicity to Windows with Express DV. Just plug your digital video camera into the 1394/Firewire capture board (included) and your clips are easily transferred to your PC. Then order the scenes and choose a built-in look and feel for the DVD menu, or create your own. Finally, burn the disc. Express DV can also make a slideshow out of JPEGs, complete with the MP3 of your choice as the soundtrack.

Unfortunately, we were unable to test the complete Express DV experience due to our lack of a DVD burner. Express DV does offer the ability to burn a Video-CD using a standard CD-R but we had little luck with this feature. Our recommendation is to visit Pinnacle's web site before buying to make sure that your DVD player is explicitly listed as compatible. (SJK). $79.95

Contact: Pinnacle Systems, 280 N. Bernardo Ave., Mountain View, CA 94043, 800 4PINNACLE, 650 526-1600, http://www.pinnaclesys.com, fax: 650 526-1601.

Entertainment Reviews

Onadime Composer (MAC)
Onadime Composer is a very unique program that has been called \"the most revolutionary leap in creativity for the Mac since the introduction of Photoshop.\" It is classified as a \"creative toolkit\" the enables users to dynamically link sound, visuals, and other movement using drag-and-drop programming. The program incorporates the patented Onadime Visual Link Language (OVALL), which supports the realtime interplay of audible and graphic elements on a digital canvas. The digital canvas can hold live video, still images, text, computer-generated graphics, QuickTime, and MPEG movies. In addition, the user can benefit from a full MIDI implementation, and instant response to live music, MP3s, and CDs. Sessions can be saved as Onadime Compositions. $199

Contact: Onadime, POB 99151, Seattle, WA 98199, 206 691-3400, http://www.onadime.com, e-mail: info@onadime.com, fax: 206 286-1608.

eMedia Guitar Method 1 (version 2) (MAC/WIN)
With version 2 of its flagship Guitar Method CD-ROM, eMedia has taken a large step closer to perfecting computer-assisted guitar instruction. The new CD-ROM focuses on two facets of guitar instruction that commonly challenge beginners -- mapping a displayed fretboard onto one's own guitar and keeping up with a recorded song when learning it for the first time. The animated fretboard that has always been a part of eMedia's products can now be reversed (simulating an instructor facing the user), or turned upside-down (creating a mirror image of the user's guitar). The more than 70 included songs can be played at various speeds, allowing users to start with a slow rendition and graduate to full speed.

Additionally, the new version contains updated lessons and a few new topics. As always, the product offers an excellent and complete introduction to the guitar. (SJK) $59.95

Contact: eMedia Music Corp., 664 NE Northlake Way, Seattle, WA 98105, 206 329-5657, http://www.emediamusic.com.

Miscellaneous News and Reviews

DynaFlex Powerball (ALL)
The DynaFlex Powerball is a unique gyro exerciser composed of a polycarbonate plastic sphere which encloses a precision-balanced gyroscopic rotor. By starting the rotor with a string or by hand, the unit can achieve speeds of up to 13,000 r.p.m. The device is useful for strengthening hands, wrists, biceps and triceps. It's therapeutic value lies in the variability of resistence that is created, reaching up to 35 lbs. of gyroscopic force, which can be measured by an optional speedometer. It may be useful in the rehabilitation of arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and repetitive stress injuries. $24.95

Contact: DynaFlex, 1401 N. Kraemer Blvd., Unit B, Anaheim, CA 92806, 800 480-8084, 714 630-0909, http://www.dynaflex-intl.com, fax: 714 632-5470.

Book Reviews

Flash Site Workshop
Milburn, Ken

The author uses a Flash-intensive Web site as an extreme illustration of the various ways in which Flash technology can be applied to create a totally dynamic environment. The application of Flash technology includes the customization of movies, an on-line store, an interactive catalog, an on-line survey, and more. Every Flash feature is provided on the accompanying Windows CD-ROM in a form that can be customized by the reader.

Available for on-line ordering at http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect?tag=thekleperreporto&path=ISBN%3D0672319993

0672319993 380 pp. $49.99

Contact: Sams, 201 West 103rd St., Indianapolis, IN 46290.

Preflight: Avoiding Costly Printout Problems Through Proper File Preparation
Muir, Peter

A handy guide to the process of properly preparing files for print. The author, a professional trainer at RIT's Technical and Education Center for the Graphic Arts and Imaging, presents the essential elements that are crucial for the construction of correctly formed files. He covers all of the component parts that are elements of the digital workflow, and shows how to work with them in a systematic and efficient way. The book is especially useful for those who are new to the digital publishing process, providing clear descriptions and helpful illustrations.

Available for on-line ordering at http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect?tag=thekleperreporto&path=ISBN%3D1893190064

1893190064 238 pp. $28

Contact: Windsor Professional Information, 30 Amberwood Parkway, POB 388, Ashland, OH 44805, 419 281-1802, e-mail: windsorpub@earthlink.net.

ActionScripting in FLASH
Kerman, Phillip

One of the only books dealing with the scripting capability introduced in Flash 5. The author provides 21 practical uses of ActionScripting, in varying degrees of sophistication. The reader can undertake increasingly more difficult and complex scripting applications.

Available for on-line ordering at http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect?tag=thekleperreporto&path=ISBN%3D0672320789

0672320789 618 pp. $39.99

Contact: Sams, 201 West 103rd St., Indianapolis, IN 46290.

How to Do Everything with Macromedia Flash 5
Blake, Bonnie

This is the book that Flash 5 users will find most useful. It clearly shows the processes involved in using all of the new features in the program, such as adding interactivity to movies using ActionScript, adding MP3 audio compression, synchronizing sound and motion, and exporting and publishing Flash movies to the Web or deploying as self-playing movies. A companion Web site is available showing the book's sample files in motion.

Available for on-line ordering at http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect?tag=thekleperreporto&path=ISBN%3D0072127147

0072127147 512 pp. $24.99

Contact: Osborne McGraw-Hill, 2600 Tenth St., Berkeley, CA 94710, 510 549-6600, fax: 510 549-6603.

Creating Stores on the Web, 2nd Edition
Sawyer, Ben; Dave Greely, Joe Cataudella

Practical, valuable insights into creating and operating on-line stores written by a team that has successful first-hand knowledge. The authors cover the entire process, from building the site to advertising and promoting the store. All of the commercial transaction processes are covered in detail. The book includes a companion Web site at http://www.storebuilder.com with updated information.

Available for on-line ordering at http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect?tag=thekleperreporto&path=ISBN%3D0201700050

0201700050 604 pp. $34.99

Contact: Peachpit Press, 1249 8th St., Berkeley, CA 94710, 800 283-9444, http://www.peachpit.com, fax: 510 524-2221.

Macromedia Flash 5 for Windows & Macintosh, Visual QuickStart Guide
Ulrich, Katherine

The simplest way to learn and apply all of the fundamental operations associated with Macromedia Flash 5. Like all Peachpit Visual QuickStart books, this volume presents the essential features and functions of the program in a step-by-step fashion, with clear, concise text, and an abundance of illustrations. The author presents all aspects of the Flash editing and playback environment, and an explanation of how to use each feature effectively. Each function is clearly described, making the book an effective reference tool as well as a thorough tutorial.

Available for on-line ordering at http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect?tag=thekleperreporto&path=ISBN%3D0201716143

0201716143 522 pp. $21.99

Contact: Peachpit Press, 1249 8th St., Berkeley, CA 94710, 800 283-9444, http://www.peachpit.com, fax: 510 524-2221.

Teach Yourself Macromedia Flash 5 in 24 Hours
Kerman, Phillip

A book composed of 24 one-hour lessons that advance in complexity from the very basics of Flash operation to sophisticated team-based projects. Some projects end with a quiz, the quiz answers, and an exercise. The scope of the projects spans the entire range of Flash 5 capabilities and provides the reader with a solid foundation of skills that can be readily applied.

Available for on-line ordering at http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect?tag=thekleperreporto&path=ISBN%3D067231892X

067231892X 585 pp. $24.99

Contact: Sams, 201 West 103rd St., Indianapolis, IN 46290.

Macromedia Flash 5! Creative Web Animation
Franklin, Derek; Brooks Patton

An all-in-one guide to the use and operation of Macromedia Flash 5. Among its 16 chapters are: Why Flash?, Graphics, Text, Sound, Bitmaps, Symbols, Working with Elements on the Stage, Using Layers to Separate Content and Functionality, Using Animation to Build Movement, and Using ActionScript for Advance Interactivity. The aim of the book is to take users from the elementary operations that are basic to Flash animation, and work steadily to the sophistication necessary for publishing complex interactivity on the Web. The cross-platform companion CD-ROM contains a trial version of Flash 5 as well as exercise files and QuickTime tutorials.

Available for on-line ordering at http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect?tag=thekleperreporto&path=ISBN%3D020171969X

020171969X 540 pp. $39.99

Contact: Macromedia Press, 2414 Sixth St., Berkeley, CA 94710

A Word From Our Sponsors

If you use a Mac and you're on the Internet, give NetBots a try:


Copyright and Distribution Information

Copyright and Distribution Information

The Kleper Report on Digital Publishing is (c)opyright 2001, Graphic Dimensions, Pittsford, NY, all rights reserved. You may distribute the released version(older than 120 days) of this document, unmodified and in its entirety. You may distribute portions of this document, up to 200 words in length, unmodified, provided that you also include this copyright notice and subscription information.

The Kleper Report on Digital Publishing is published in Adobe Acrobat PDF format http://www.adobe.com, using SoftLock http://www.softlock.com technology. Each issue costs $4.95, with a 6 issue subscription costing $24.95. The free Acrobat reader and the free SoftLock plug-in and registration program are required for viewing.

Past issues (more than 120 days old) of The Kleper Report on Digital Publishing are available on the Web at: http://www.printerport.com/kdp/. Comments and inquiries should be directed to: The Kleper Report on Digital Publishing, 134 Caversham Woods, Pittsford, NY 14534 USA. E-mail: kdp@printerport.com.