No Drupa, but a new PitStop!
No Drupa, but a new PitStop! In this particular year, we won’t have the chance to walk the aisles of the Drupa in Düsseldorf, but that won’t stop us from enjoying the new version of PitStop, which has just been released and which offers an avalanche of new features. It’s Christmas ahead of time!
Many new features
A lot of new features for this 2020 version of PitStop Pro and PitStop Server. We have selected here some of the most interesting features to our opinion to describe them in more detail.
An increased use of variables
Enfocus has had the good idea to allow the use of variables in many more features, enriching them and making them even more powerful.
Add copied graphic
We particularly liked the fact that the addition of content (symbolized by the famous “Add penguins” 🐧 action list that we’ve always loved!) now allows you to use a variable file (and not just a visual content embedded in the action list).
As you can see in the video below, we have created an “Add Penguins 2.0”, linked to the result of the preflight files, which displays a happy penguin when the preflight went well, and a sad penguin when it didn’t!
Below is the result on the two test files checked with the GWG_SheetCmyk_2015CMYK Ghent Workgroup profile. We took the opportunity to insert a QRcode, which is dynamically generated according to the number of errors, warnings and fixes. Here’s what it looks like with the automatic detection of QRcode by the iPhone’s camera:
It is now possible to use variables when adding pages to dynamically choose the document whose pages you want to insert!
Search and replace text
The new search and replace text function (previously you could only search for text) also uses variables. This feature will prove extremely handy (it’s long overdue at Enfocus!) for making simple text changes – it will not be suitable for large changes, for example in a text involving reflow of lines. It will also be necessary to take into account the constraints related to font subset embedding.
We still see a strong interest in updating codes, for example, on a package. We had to do this over time, but the techniques to implement were complex and it took a long time to develop the scripts. Here, we can imagine the search for an old code through a database query and the replacement of this old code by a new one according to the result of the database query (we can, by extension also think of a barcode made of a barcode font, which can be changed by modifying the text).
It has long been possible to interactively overlay one PDF file on top of another in PitStop Pro. It is now (finally, should I say!) possible through an action list. Here too, the choice of the file to overlay is variable!
A new algorithm for bleed detection
The bleed detection is a very useful function, but it is however difficult to implement and the results are not always very conclusive.
Enfocus developed a new algorithm for this detection, using computer vision capabilities. These algorithms are close to those found, for example, in road sign detection tools in the automotive world. We will also come back to this technology in the following feature.
Thanks to this new detection mode, the results are better and produce far fewer false positives. PitStop now offers a new action list to detect if the page elements do not have enough bleed to fill the bleed area, as you can see in the example below:
A young but promising feature: visual content detection
Also thanks to computer vision capabilities, PitStop can now detect visual content within a page!
The interest is obvious: it is now possible to create a preflight profile that makes it possible to check that a visual element (brand logo for example) is present in a page, or even in a specific area of the page, or to detect that it is present only once, or not at all, etc. The potential is huge!
We see many use cases, especially for packaging, in conformity checks.
We have done a lot of testing around this new feature, but unfortunately the results are still a bit below what we expect, especially for a reliable control without human intervention. Depending on the settings (quite fine) and the complexity of the visual to be detected (the more complex it is, the better the detection), we have unfortunately encountered cases where the visual was not detected when it should have been and vice versa. – So it’s still a bit early to rely on it 100% (for example, our logo doesn’t seem to have enough details to be detected correctly in all cases).
It should also be noted that this process is very heavy in terms of needed power (therefore time). It is a key consideration if you want to add it to your current preflight profiles.
According to our tests, it proves to be very effective in some cases of use, a little less in others. But this technology is very young, it is in its very first version in PitStop. It will undoubtedly progress and the results with it!
As this function offers numerous settings and use cases, we will come back to it in detail in a dedicated Tech Monday.
Other things we liked
Other interesting features have been added, including image vectorization function (trace), stroke to fill conversions, improvements in the color libraries, crop to clip, etc.
So much… that it’s impossible to detail everything. We told you it was Christmas! 🎁
We like the fact that the inspector now includes a color swatches palette, allowing to store and recall colors that are used regularly (corporate color for example).
We will also note the new features concerning PDF 2.0, such as version control.
PitStop 2020 is available today
If you are under maintenance contract, you must have received your activation keys from Enfocus.
For our customers, if this is not the case, please contact us!
Not under contract or not yet using PitStop?
The trial version can be downloaded directly from the Enfocus website.
Do you have any questions? Would you like to have some discussion with us?
Leave us a comment below 😊