Engineering Update: ARTHR changes and the upcoming Newspaper Club API

We’ve been making lots of tweaks to ARTHR recently, based on your feedback. We’re not quite there yet, but very soon there will be more fonts and colours to choose from, a selection of beautiful cover pages, finer control of where stories are positioned, and more.

And we’ll have news for developers interested in building services that generate newspapers using ARTHR’s layout technology. Our Newspaper Club API is in the process of being documented and tidied up. We’ll post here when we’re looking for people to be beta testers.

But today we’re just making a few changes to help us get ready for all that. When your ARTHR newspaper next refreshes (later today), you may notice that some of the typography has changed in places – the fonts style and sizes might look slightly different. You might find that stories start and finish in slightly different places, or that there is more or less room after them. Or you might not notice anything at all.

We’re making these changes today so that you have time to adjust your paper before our next print run on Tuesday.

As always, if you have any feedback on ARTHR, or anything else, please let us know at newspaperclub@newspaperclub.com.

Posted by Tom | Comments Off

Filed under: developments, engineering

Big news: short-run colour newspapers are here!

In our last blog post we hinted that there was some big news on the way. Well, it’s here. We can now print small runs of newspapers in full colour. Here’s one, hot off the press, hastily photographed by Engineering:

From now on, all orders under 300 copies will be printed on a brand new digital colour printer. Here are some things you might need to know.

How much will it cost?

As we’re trying all of this out just now we’re keeping the prices the same as black and white for one more week. After that, the prices for larger papers will rise slightly. A new price list will be available next week.

How should PDFs be set up?

At the moment, the page size for digital colour papers is the same as the old black and white size – 317mm x 457mm. In a few weeks it will change to 289mm x 380mm, the same as traditional colour. There still needs to be a 15mm margin around each spread (otherwise it can’t be printed).

To get the best from your colours, set blacks to rich black – unlike traditional newspaper there isn’t an optimum limit for ink coverage.

There are no changes to papers made in ARTHR. They’ll be created in the same way as before.

What about printing in black and white?

It’s still possible to produce a black and white newspaper, but from now on it will be printed in colour on the colour printer. To get blacks looking nice and dark set them to rich black rather than 100%K.

Printing dates and turnaround times

Print dates and turnaround times are the same as before. The print deadline is every Tuesday at 2pm and the papers should reach you within 7 days, often sooner.

Samples

If you’d like a sample just drop us a line at support@newspaperclub.com and we’ll get one out to you.

Posted by Anne | Comments (4)

Filed under: developments, news

There is no new news now, there might be some later

Newspaper Club Away Day

We had a big meeting the other day. A proper meeting with an agenda with eight items on it.

We have these approximately twice a year to check on how we’re doing as a business, check all the team are happy and suggest ideas for the future.

The big news is that there’s no new news at the moment. There is some very exciting stuff we’re working on, stuff we’ve been wanting to do from day one, but it would be foolish to announce that until it’s all finished. But rest assured that there are good, exciting developments planned for the rest of the year.

Newspaper Club Away Day

Personally these meetings always remind me how good everyone else in the team is. Hiring Anne Ward has been the best decision we’ve made. Our customers are very happy. Here are some recent tweets from actual customers.

For the blog

For the blog

And as we tweeted last week. “we have more customers than we did”.

For the blog

That’s not because of our multi-million dollar marketing campaigns, that’s not because of my award winning design, that’s because Newspaper Club is a well built product with a delightful customer experience all wrapped inside a well run business. The delightful customer experience is all down to Anne. She’s our delighter. She’s also the closet person to the actual business and therefore is able to offer fantastic insight into what further developments customers would like to see. Her ideas are invaluable.

Newspaper Club Away Day

The well built product bit is down to Tom (obviously). Newspaper Club is a towering technical achievement as recognised in the Special Technical Achievement Award from the BIMA’s last year. But more than that Tom is a powerhouse development team of just one. Sometimes we forget how good he is when we’re saying, how about we just incorporate that, or we just do this and he just nods and says, yep, yep. I’ll stop now, I’m probably embarrassing him.

The well run business bit is down to Gary, our CEO. Unlike most Start-Ups™ we have hired someone far better and far more experienced than us to run the business. This has been another key decision. I’ve personally seen lots of start ups fail because the owners are too close to the business. We’re trying to be as far away as is healthy.

Lastly, if you think this blog post is a bit silly, you are mistaken. If you’ve ever shipped you’ll know this stuff is a big deal.

Posted by Ben | Comments (2)

Filed under: art, developments, running a business