by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
FLEXO Magazine : January 2011
Farewell, My Friends in Flexo Go figure! Leave it to me to make my grand exit from FTA, FLEXO Magazine and the flexographic industry at large during January ’s forecast issue. I say that, partly in jest, because (as those who know me well understand) I try not to present myself as an expert in printing, production, color science or any similar such field. I am, and will always be, an outsider looking in. This isn’t because anybody has treated me this way—quite the opposite, in fact. It simply wasn’t, as I perceived it to be, my core function as as- sociate editor, managing editor or editor-in-chief of FLEXO. Instead, I saw myself as a translator. Moreover, the role of editor is that of a facilitator of information; someone whose job it is to transfer knowledge from those who have it, to those who need it. Of course, one can’t help it if a little bit of that knowledge splashes over in the transfer process. It’s from that angle that I approach this column. Eight years ago, I arrived in Ronkonkoma, NY, thinking that I had landed a job doing busy work for a small trade mag in a tiny niche market. That misconception didn’t live long. Flexography was and remains a fast-moving, ever-evolving industry ripe with innovators and some of the world’s most forward-thinking companies. Case in point: Despite having been recognized with the inaugural FTA Technical Innovation Award in 1996, computer- to-plate processing was not as widespread in prepress facilities as many manufacturers would have had one believe in 2002. Why? The systems were pricey. Personnel had to be retrained. Debate raged whether the plate’s dot structures really laid down better printed dots. In a 2003 article, it was revealed that many prepress operators could produce excel- lent quality print using film-based processors, simply be- cause they were so comfortable and familiar with the system and its ticks. Fast forward seven years, and what do we have? The same issues arise over flat-top dots--cost, training, doubt. Inevitably, as with any viable technology, as the waters cool, more and more will dip their toes (or hold their nose and cannonball in) until, much like CTP (does anyone even call it that any more?), it becomes more or less de facto. In the short time that I’ve worked at FTA, it’s been easy to see that, as the industry moves forward, technology advances at an accelerated pace. As a result, adoption cycles have and will continue to get shorter. We can expect that with flat-top dots. We’re already seeing it with digital printing (see pages 38 and 42 in this issue). The latter has spurred rapid growth in automation, particularly in the narrow web arena (check out the sidebar on page 48). The wide web world, which has been making waves in automation since around 2005, is now taking things further with the application of robot- ics (page 32). There’s a lot about this industry that I’m going to miss. As you can tell from above, I love writing about technology. Some of my favorite articles revolve around FTA Technical Innova- tion Award demo projects. Started in 2004, not only did these projects lead to my first time step- ping into a flexo plant, they represented my first real experience seeing the entire flexographic printing workflow in action from beginning to end. More so than that, these projects accessed some of the most cutting edge technologies that the industry had to offer and put them on display for everyone to see, feel and touch. But more than that, I’m going to miss the people. After all, if you go back through some of the numerous printer profiles that I’ve done over the years, 90 percent of them insist that “people are your greatest asset.” T he other 10 percent probably forgot to mention it. The simple truth is: if you don’t believe this, you won’t be successful. And it’s the very reason the flexographic industry is and will continue to be successful. I’d like to leave off with a sincere “Thank You” to all of those people who I have worked with throughout the entire industry, including FTA/FFTA’s current and past Boards, the Wide Web Leadership Council (in all its incarnations), FLEXO’s current and past Editorial Advisory Committee, the various Forum chairs, much of the current and past FTA staff, and about a bizillion other industry experts too numerous to mention by name. I will always look back fondly on my friends in flexo. All the Best! Chris Christian R. Bonawandt ASSOCIATION NEWS 6 FLEXO JANUARY 2011 www.flexography.org FTA TODAY A Green PrintinG resource WINTER2008/Vol.1 ,No. 1 3Carbon Disclosure Project 10 SPC: Green By Design 13 Sustainability: Step-By -Step An ExclusivE OnlinE supplEmEnt tO FlExO mAgAzinE publishEd QuArtErly by
Sustainable Winter 2011