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    « Bits or Atoms? | Main | What do Reprographers and iTunes have in Common? »

    September 06, 2006

    Not the Only Industry Seeing a Decline in Volume

    Chris Anderson describes in his book, "The Long Tail", how the pervasiveness of Internet technology has caused a decline in traditional media sales.  Newspaper distribution is down 33 percent since the 1980's.  Album sales are down 20% since the launch of the iPod and iTunes.

    He points to other more current statistics in a blog article in November of 2005.

    For companies whose business model was based on selling plastic CD's or paper newspapers this is not good news.  For those who produce music, distribute music, or are involved in journalism; there are more opportunities for your music or ideas to be heard.  There are also many evolving business models for making money off these new ways of creating and distributing media.

    I see several parrallel trends in the distribution of construction media.


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    Scott Sheppard

    For two years I have been preaching that electronic formats like DWF will take hold. The retort from many reprographers is that they would like to see an industry standard based of Tiff. Users of design data will want to do things with the data in addition to printing. Intelligent formats make that possible.

    In terms of music, my generation was in pursuit of the most lifelike sound. We were the knuckleheads (not me personally - I'm talkin' 'bout my generation)who would spend $10,000 on a tonearm for our turntables. Many scoffed at CDs because they were a digital approximation to a true analog signal. Now formats like MP3 are all the rage and sometimes an MP3 is a quality reduced digital sample to keep the file size small.

    Unlike with music, a format like DWF offer the advantage of small file size with no loss in fidelity of design intent.

    Scott Sheppard

    The hope for seeing increases in printing volumes is to get more people involved in the process. At the end of the day many participants want to unroll an E size drawing on the hood of a truck and get real work done. Let us not forget that part of the equation.

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