The Well-Formed Document

Articles by publishing professionals

Redefining Accessibility to Help Save Publishing

By David Alan Rech of Scribe Inc.

I have the honor of being on the National Task Force on Accessible Materials Innovation that is part of the Center for Accessible Materials Innovation (CAMI, http://cami.gatech.edu/). Ostensibly, we are charged with aiding in the success of students with disabilities. The hope, of course, is that we can develop standards and methods to make books more accessible to students with print-related disabilities. The task force is comprised of talented professionals who bring a number of perspectives to

Read more

Corrections: Typesetters’ Dirty Little Secret

By David Alan Rech of Scribe Inc.

We have a secret to tell you. Take a look at your typesetter’s bill. Do you notice how expensive the corrections charges are? In Scribe’s experience, the amount charged for corrections is often substantial and can represent up to 50 percent of the total bill from your typesetter. More than one of our competitors has remarked that they were sure of continued business because publishers couldn’t cure themselves of corrections. This has been kept a secret because it adds to revenue, but corrections

Read more

Preparing for an Electronic Dark Age

By Mark Fretz of Scribe Inc.

Vint Cerf, universally recognized as an American Internet pioneer, recently warned of a potential digital Dark Age. Underlying this specter is the issue of accessibility, or digital storage and retrieval, defined in technological terms rather than in terms of human functionality. The Dark Age he has in mind pertains to having all sorts of content stored somewhere but being unable to access it (i.e., to open and manipulate content saved in files or stored on servers or computers). Although Cerf is

Read more

How Publishers Can Be More Effective With Their Social Media

By Michael Maher of Scribe Inc.

When I log into Scribe’s social media accounts every day, one of the first things I do is check out what different publishers are up to. I have been doing this for a few years now, and it is amazing how things have changed and how things continue to change. Five years ago, some of the biggest publishing houses in the world would go days or even weeks without updating their Facebook pages. A few did not even have Twitter accounts.

Today, when I looked at the Twitter account of a major publisher—an

Read more

HTML5: Better, Still Not Best

By Dan Corrigan of Scribe

In October of last year, the World Wide Web Consortium gave final approval to HTML5, making it the new default standard for web-based content. From a publishing perspective, it’s a substantial improvement over its predecessor. It offers more possibilities for semantically tagging the structure of content with division elements like “section,” “article,” and “header.”

Because of this, HTML5 has recently come into vogue with some publishers as a practical option for digital publishing and archiving

Read more

An Interview with Carey Newman

By Carey Newman of the Baylor University Press

For this month’s newsletter, Mark Fretz, Scribe’s Director of Editorial Services, interviewed Dr. Carey Newman, Director of the Baylor University Press. As is evident in the exchange, Baylor University Press is a client of Scribe, having adopted Scribe’s Well-Formed Document Workflow to create its publications. The questions and answers that follow detail the evolution of the press since its inception in 1897, the problems that were faced, and why Baylor University Press chose the Well-Formed

Read more

WYSIWYG: What You Structure Is What You Get

By David Alan Rech of Scribe Inc.

We in the publishing industry still treat print as our main focus. This makes perfect sense because our focus has practical publishing as well as solid business justifications. However, this does not necessarily justify all the attention we give to the visual aspects of our publications. As discussed in previous newsletters, relying on our “eye” can be detrimental to the publishing process.

Despite that, our industry is focused on developing additional tools to facilitate the ability to operate

Read more

Demanding Vendor Specifications

By David Alan Rech of Scribe Inc.

A short while ago, I visited a potential client. I was impressed with their editorial and production teams because they had given serious thought to the durability of their publications. They had a strict style list, a unified method to produce books, and a clear vision to archive their materials in ways that facilitated future use. They were conscious of the need to communicate their standards among themselves and to work to develop consistent, identifiable publications.

Then we started talking

Read more