[Openicc] GoSoC 2011: CPD and target printing

Michael Sweet msweet at apple.com
Wed May 11 20:51:30 PDT 2011

On May 11, 2011, at 5:38 PM, Chris Murphy wrote:
> ...
> Yeah Apple went through this phase where they provided no means to manually set a profile, and still have no means to set a rendering intent (or black point compensation) in the print dialog UI. And this was met with resistance from users. So it's pretty clear in my mind that a manual setting needs to be allowed in the print dialog. 

I am still of the opinion that controls in the print dialog are the wrong approach - you go through significant effort to print a target, wait some amount of time for the target print to stabilize, then generate a profile from that target.  This isn't a one-off process, and you have (very likely) carefully chosen print settings when printing the target.  Not associating those settings with the profile will lead to frustration since you will get bad output if the settings don't match the profile.

The workflow I would like to see is this:

1. The profiling app handles printing targets, reading targets, generating profiles, and registering profiles with their associated settings (call the combination a "preset" for lack of a better word).  The same kind of application could create new presets using existing profiles (i.e. this is where you would be able to choose an alternate profile, even if it wasn't qualified for use with the settings you want...)

2. The print dialog allows the user to select presets. When no preset is chosen, the print dialog will choose a profile based on the vendor rules.

3. The printing system and/or color management system provide API to query and store preset information. Ideally this API allows for user, system, network, and vendor presets.

The only thing worse than no color management is bad color management.  I often have conversations about color management and bad color output from otherwise intelligent people that go something like this:

"I can't get good output from my XYZ printer."

"What media and options are you using?"

"I'm using Acme UltraPhoto paper. I bought this photospectrometer thingy and some profiling software so I could get good output. I made a profile for the paper, but no matter what options I change in the print dialog the output isn't good!"

A fundamental problem is that "power users" will try every control in the UI without understanding the consequences.  Yes we need to enable advanced color managed workflows.  But we also need to make those workflows accessible or risk having conversations like the above and general user dissatisfaction.

Michael Sweet, Senior Printing System Engineer, PWG Chair

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