POD localization and targeting pubs for reproduction; was: Re: recommendations for Print on Demand vendors

Subject: POD localization and targeting pubs for reproduction; was: Re: recommendations for Print on Demand vendors
From: David Neeley <dbneeley -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Tue, 15 Mar 2011 08:54:38 +0200


Another facet you may wish to consider: if you have substantial user base outside the U.S., you might seriously consider finding POD resources abroad. For instance, if you have customers in the E.U., having a vendor there will lower the costs and response time for them. This is more convenient for your customers, of course, and it also may increase the use of your printed docs correspondingly.

If you also happen to have docs in various languages, that is a natural as well--to have the localized docs available locally as well.

I am somewhat familiar with POD regarding fiction and trade paperback nonfiction, but unfortunately I've never been involved with any of them for tech docs. A major concern of mine would be whether any of your docs need to have color reproduction of any illustrations; secondarily, whether any graphics are produced with an eye toward how well they might reproduce in a monochrome Xerographic medium.

As you are aware, various colors can easily reproduce as similar shades of gray when printed in black and white; this can result in unfortunately difficult to use graphical figures.

Thus, I believe best practices would indicate that when you are targeting this kind of reproduction you should carefully assess your graphics, increasing contrast where necessary to be sure the output is useful to the customer. In some cases, this can be somewhat of a PITP (pain in the posterior), it can make a huge difference in the resulting document's usefulness.

In those cases where the product itself may have serious impact on health and safety (which I presume your products may?), striving for maximum clarity would certainly seem to be significant in this regard.


On 03/15/2011 07:55 AM, techwr-l-request -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com wrote:

From: "Stephen Arrants" <steve -at- mbfbioscience -dot- com>

We are moving from including printed manuals to letting the end user
either print out the included PDF or ordering a print manual from a POD
vendor. Does anyone have any experience and/or suggestions for vendors?
The vendor(s) would print and ship without our involvement.
Our current printing vendor dropped out of the business.
We've already surveyed out user base and majority use online
documentation only; remaining users said they were OK with POD.


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