Apago announced on Monday the release of an Adobe Acrobat plug-in called Box Editor that uses a new XML data format for easier exchange of important data between publishers and advertisers. The company made the news public at the PrintMedia Conference and Expo happening this week in New York City. Apago also noted that publishers Time and CMP Media now support the new XML format and will make their ad specs available in it later this month.

Apago announced on Monday the release of an Adobe Acrobat plug-in called Box Editor that uses a new XML data format for easier exchange of important data between publishers and advertisers. The company made the news public at the PrintMedia Conference and Expo happening this week in New York City. Apago also noted that publishers Time and CMP Media now support the new XML format and will make their ad specs available in it later this month.

"Even though PDF/X files have been widely adopted for advertising workflow," said Apago president Dwight Kelly, "the bleed and trim data they require often contain incorrect specifications, leading to costly mistakes and lost time. To place ads on pages and impose pages and spreads efficiently, publishers need PDF/X files from advertisers with accurate data in bleed and trim boxes."

Kelly feels that, while XML has been used in the past for exchanging ad specs, "previous attempts were complex and not widely implemented." The new data format allows publishers to supply an XML file containing bleed and trim data to advertisers, who can use Box Editor to import and manipulate it.

Box Editor also allows advertisers to create libraries of ad specs for different publication; a grouping feature positions trim and bleed boxes simultaneously. In addition, publishers can use it as a control panel for digital ads, deleting all content outside the trim or bleed area with one mouse click and looking at PDF/X-specific information, including Trapping status and OutputIntent values. The Vue/X mode configures Acrobat for viewing PDF/X files correctly.

The plug-in is compatible with Acrobat 5.0 or higher and costs $29 (around £17). You can also get Box Editor as part of Apago's $249 (£140) PDF/X Checkup preflight software, which scans files for errors and automatically corrects them. There is no charge to publishers who want to use the new XML format for supplying bleed and trim data.