TYPEStyles Design & Printing

Production/Technical Issues


Some files created on different operating platforms may be mutually incompatible. Some files created by different versions of the same software may be unusable. Resolve compatibility issues before electronic mechanicals are output by an imagesetter.

An Adobe Illustrator file created on a Mac will not be able to be opened on a PC. An MS Word document created in Word 6 will not open on a computer loaded with Word 5.1 or may not be recognized properly as an e-mail attachment. Macintosh computers can, however save files in PC format.

Large image files may take hours to transmit through commercially available access lines.

A large image file might take several hours to successfully transmit through an electronic communications line. The parties shall agree whether or not there will be a charge for the time needed to receive and access an unusually large transmitted file and, if so, how much.

Some images created by illustrator programs may take an excessive amount of time to output or transmit.

An illustrator file with many repetitive blends, although appearing to be a small file, may take many hours above the normal processing times to output or to transmit. It is customary in the industry to charge for the time needed to transmit an excessively large file.

Software: Files used by clients for production work may be created and saved in the latest accepted industry version.

Many clients or suppliers may be using older or outdated working versions of software. Different versions can cause compatibility problems that affect output.

A supplier may only want to use the latest updated version of a working program. If that supplier uses that version to correct or edit a client supplied older version original, that document may take on the characteristics of the newer version and may only be opened by the latest version of the program. If a client uses a brand new or beta version of a program, it is wise to check with suppliers and clients if they have that latest version before sending them files. Everyone should be working on the same version so that opening the document will not change its integrity.

"High end prepress computer equipment" may not be able to improve the quality of low resolution original images.

Sophisticated image manipulation software and hardware have limited abilities to sharpen, correct, or reasonably correct poor or low resolution images. It is customary in the industry to charge for the time and materials provided by a supplier to correct these images.

Corrupt files: A corrupted file, or a file that can't be read or laser printed by a client may not be able to be used or accessed by a supplier.

Sophisticated image manipulation software and hardware may have limited abilities to correct and utilize corrupted files. It is customary in the industry to charge for the time spent by a supplier and media provided to correct these files.

Use of photographs or illustrations is dictated by a rights agreement or negotiated ownership agreement. Subtle changes to those images using computer-generated techniques or changes in their final format may infringe on the artist's rights and contractual agreements.

If you scan a photo from a magazine, colorize it, flop it, and use it for a commercial venture you may be liable for infringement of usage rights. If a photo is contracted for use in a publication but is also used for a national ad or on an internet site, you may be liable for infringement of usage rights.

An image or file downloaded from the web and used or repurposed for a commercial application, may infringe on the rights of the creator or originator of that image or file.

Several map publishers have legal teams searching print documents and internet sites for illegal copyright infringement of their product for commercial uses.

It is customary in the industry to charge for the time or materials used by a supplier to recreate an original file into a usable file for production or for a client's use.

A supplier may recreate art or transfer graphics into other programs in order to use the file. If a client needs a "working file" for other uses or projects, the supplier may have to spend additional time or resources to re create it. It is customary in the industry to charge for these services.

The parties shall agree whether or not there will be a charge for storage or archiving of images or files by a supplier and, if so, how much.

Any charges for these services should be contracted at the beginning of a project. Some suppliers charge on an hourly basis, a per page or image basis, or on a contracted monthly or yearly fee basis.

It is customary in the industry to charge for special digital retouching or image manipulation to photographic or illustrative images.

It is customary in the industry to charge for the supplier's time and material cost to match the color, as close as commercially possible and any time spent, or proofs pulled, to change colors or manipulate the image away from its original form.

The parties shall agree whether or not there will be a charge for uploading or copying a file to transportable or transmittable media for a current job and, if so, how much.

Those costs include the time needed to find the archived file, the time to copy the file, the storage media if any, and a delivery fee, if any.

Transmission of some digital files through commercial e-mail or Internet service providers may be limited. Attachments to those files may also be limited in quality to text or to small image files.

An attached and compressed transmission through America Online or other commercial Internet provider oftentimes may be limited in size.

Media: Popular storage media can get quickly outdated. Keep track of where files are stored and have them copied to the newer form of media used.

20 years ago the 5-1/2" floppy was the common storage media for PCs. Few PCs have capabilities to read those discs today. In 1995 the 44-88 MB SyQuest was the preferred storage media for Macintosh. SyQuest is now out of business and few industries are using those formats for storage or archiving. Computer manufacturers are no longer designing floppy drives in their computers, the ZIP is outmoded, and CDs, DVDs and thumb drives are today's popular storage media. It would be difficult to retrieve an important document such as a will if it was archived in an outdated storage format.