Big Changes for Meadows DesignMerge Software to be unveiled at GraphExpo

October 21, 2008 in Publishing (E)

[] Schaumburg, IL - Meadows Publishing Solutions (MPS) today revealed details concerning the upcoming release of their DesignMerge Pro variable data software package for Adobe InDesign. DesignMerge is a powerful suite of plug-in modules that works directly with the Adobe InDesign application to produce unique, customized output in all of the most popular VDP formats, including PPML and Creo VPS. The new version of DesignMerge includes a number of new features, as well as revised package pricing.

DesignMerge Pro Starter Package:
DesignMerge Pro will soon be available in a limited-record version of the product called the Starter Package, which is available in several configurations, up to a 100,000-record limited version. The package includes all of the modules of the standard DesignMerge Pro package, as well as 30 days of free support. The DesignMerge Pro Starter Packages start at just $495 (USD) and are available for Adobe InDesign CS3 and soon for CS4.

"We designed the DesignMerge Starter Packages as an easy entry point for companies that want to get started in VDP, but wish to minimize their initial investment, and get a job or two under their belt before committing," said Meadows President, John Kriho. "The user can purchase a Starter Package, re-load it if they need to, or upgrade to the unlimited version at a discounted price. We have already had a tremendous amount of interest in these packages from our existing customer base."

Additional New DesignMerge Features to be Unveiled at Graph Expo. Meadows will showcase several new DesignMerge features at Graph Expo in booth #4450:

* Meadows GroupPicture(TM) Software: GroupPicture is a new product that allows for the creation of variable "groups" of objects that remain in InDesign native format, but can be treated just like picture files. The grouped objects can contain any InDesign objects, and can also contain DesignMerge VDP links. When the GroupPicture objects are merged onto the page, the original InDesign objects are imported, and any DesignMerge links within the objects are then merged. This unique product allows the user to create fully-variable layouts that can be recalled onto the page in the same fashion as a variable picture. GroupPicture is now a standard component of DesignMerge Pro.

* VDP Optimizer Included: The VDP Optimizer is a plug-in technology that has been under development by Meadows for more than two years. This new module works with DesignMerge Pro to streamline the entire preparation and output process for PostScript, PPML and Creo VPS printing. In Meadows testing, this new feature has been shown to increase overall throughput by as much 300% on certain applications. The VDP Optimizer is a standard component of DesignMerge Pro and DesignMerge Pro Starter.

* Intelligent Mail Bar Code Support: DesignMerge Pro now includes built-in support for the USPS Intelligent Mail Bar Code format, which will replace PostNet as the standard mailing bar code format in 2009. For more information about this new bar code format, please visit Meadows Publishing website.

* AppleScript and JavaScript Support: DesignMerge Pro will include support for both AppleScript and JavaScript. This new feature allows the DesignMerge user to create scripts that can be triggered conditionally, based on merged data, using the DesignMerge Rules module, and can control any aspect of the InDesign document that is exposed by InDesign scripting. Meadows provides several custom scripting events that can be used to query DesignMerge and obtain merge session information, as well as retrieve data values directly from the database being merged. In addition, users can now develop custom scripts that can be used as arguments to conditional statements created using the DesignMerge Rules module.

* Bar Code Module Option: The Meadows Bar Code Module is an optional module that provides support for a number of popular bar codes, including Code 128, UPC, Code 39, MSI-Plessey, and Codabar. The software includes a royalty-free set of bar code fonts that work in conjunction with DesignMerge to automate the bar coding process.

* ODBC Option: The Meadows ODBC plug-in is an optional module that allows DesignMerge to connect directly to any ODBC-compliant database. The ODBC module includes support for an extensive list of replaceable parameters, which allows users to construct SQL queries that are attached to DesignMerge links. An interactive debugging and testing feature is also included with the module.

Meadows Publishing Solutions is a software development and consulting company specializing in commercial and custom XTensions(TM) for QuarkXPress(R), plug-in modules for Adobe(R) InDesign(R) and Adobe(R) Acrobat(R) and other extensible technologies. Meadows has developed a number of popular software packages for the database publishing and variable data printing markets, including their award-winning products AutoPrice(TM) and DesignMerge(R). Founded in 1991, Meadows is based just outside of Chicago in Schaumburg, Illinois. For more information, please visit their website.