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01-04-2011

Major Printcloud release

What would Google do? Google always makes sure the
infrastructure works first. Only then, they release the applications
that depend on it. That makes sense, right?

Well, we are proud to announce that step one has been completed for
Peecho, too. In preparation of Great Things In The Future (dum-dum-dum),
we succesfully launched a new generation of Printcloud – our
print infrastructure in the cloud.

Any PDF by URL


Printcloud now accepts PDF by URL for bookalikes (that’s
anything bookish). And seriously, that means virtually any PDF.
You don’t need to worry about bleed, cutmarks, trim or media boxes,
overprint, transparency, PDF/X ISO compliance or CMYK colors. Our
systems have it covered.

Even if your document is sized according to a weird ratio, the final
printed product will be sized the way you want it. And if several pages within
the same document have different sizes, we will not be alarmed – our
automated procedures will fix it, too.

Variable number of pages


Based on a great demand, we implemented a new feature in the Printcloud
API that is called document composition. If you create a
bookalike at Printcloud, you can define a variable number of pages in
your book or magazine, based on a set of page templates you defined
yourself.

In other words: you can vary the amount and order of page templates
within a single document. For example, this makes it quite simple to
compose a really nice photo book based on a variable number of images.

A new Printclient


Print people are our friends. So, we make sure they have the tools they
need. Together with the new version of Printcloud, a new Printclient has
been released.


  • Under account, you can set your credentials. These are
    globally valid for each profile.

  • You can now use profiles. So, you can now add a test profile
    and a production profile, using the same credentials.

  • Under the settings tab, the behaviour of the Printclient can be
    defined. Things like grouping of files and directories and whether or
    not the files should be put into the production status by default can
    be set here.


Also, it looks much prettier. See?



What makes our print facilities really happy is that the output of our
platform is now fully PDF/X-3 ISO compliant – we supply print-ready PDF
with the right trimboxes and without overprint or transparency
artefacts. This means printers can dump the files straight into their
machines without having to do another processing step with very
expensive software.

A platform overhaul


The platform has been prettified as well.



Next to this new interface, the platform has been refactored completely
to support features like any PDF by URL. We now use:


  • No-SQL AWS database service SimpleDB for non-relational parts of our
    data structure.

  • Distributed AWS DNS service Route 53 for our DNS entries.

  • Double, load balanced EC2 instances for all our consumer facing
    services.

  • New processing software that is better, much faster and more reliable.


For the statistics freaks: our Sonar code quality score went up to a
rock solid 9 out of 10, rules compliance is a near perfect 99%, the code
complexity factor is zero and our unit test coverage is currently over
80%. Woop, woop.

Jolien

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