With a Capital C
Still, an eager Fasano admits that while digital conversion saves time, it also creates a new work regimen: "I spend more time troubleshooting files and preflighting. What we send out to Cadmus has to be exactly what we want to print, so I have to double-check the color lasers, as well as the files. A computer problem can be the death of us fairly quickly. We had a server crash recently and it took some creative scrambling to move all of the files before the whole thing died!"
In the details
Despite glitches, under the guidance of its WITF parent and its printer, conversion of the magazine's January 2001 issue was a cool one.
"By the end of 1999, we got [the magazine] into PDF," explains Charlie Detruit, CadmusMack's Mid-Atlantic digital services team manager. "From a printer's perspective, we can get a magazine 80 percent of the way there. The other 20 percent is having to make changes in the client's environment. The nice thing about a monthly magazine is that you can work the bugs out each issue so they never become an ongoing problem."
Fasano says the trial and error process is now standardized: "We submit our material on disk [jazz or zips] along with a complete set of color lasers [that act as a guide for the printer]." In fact, it was only until the nation witnessed one of the most tumultuous events in its history did Central PA's production train halt. "During the events of September 11, when no planes were flying, we ended up transferring the magazine via FTP site," recounts Fasano. "Since Cadmus did not have any color lasers to proof against, they e-mailed me a soft proof and we did an approval that way. I guess that necessity is the mother of invention."