Variable Data Intelligent Postscript Printware

Variable Data Intelligent Postscript Printware

Variable Data Intelligent Postscript Printware (FreeFlow VI Suite (VIPP)) is an open language from Xerox that enables highest-performance output of personalized (variable-data) PostScript documents [ VIPP Support Forum]

VIPP was originally called XGF and it is simply groups of PostScript dictionaries which provide macros that simplify writing of complex PostScript commands.PostScript is powerful language which allows variable data printing and personalization of the data stream if the user inserted the right commands in the right position.

To implement some of these features a programmer has to write a few, or sometimes many, lines of code.Xerox developed macro procedures in PostScript language dictionaries to facilitate page control with simple commands.
For exampleTo merge form (graphic form) with the data stream you need to understand and write a great deal of Adobe PostScript commands according to the Red Book of Adobe.

Xerox gives you this feature through this simple command
("formname") SETFORM.
where "formname" is the name of the form file saved on the hard disk of The Sun station Xerox controller ( DocuSP or FreeFlow)
Several VIPP commands are identical to PostScript commands, somewhat redundant, but consistent with the designers' efforts to give the "language" mnemonic ease of use.

VIPP was originally written by couple of Xerox systems Analysts in Switzerland to enable the highest speed Postscript Printers, at that time 50 pages per minute, to have the features of Xerox's famous production printing languages PDL and FDL (Xerox proprietary printing languages) which provide simple variable data printing.

With the success of the personal efforts of these Analyst(s) Xerox Corporation adopted the idea and developed their work by putting these procedures on Sun Microsystems hosts where the Adobe interpreter also resides. Together, these modules give complete control over the printing engine and data stream.

VIPP can be used in three different modes: Database mode, Line mode, and Native mode. In Database mode, the programmer can quickly implement a printing solution, for example a billing application, for a delimited database file. In Line mode, an existing print application can be enhanced with form overlays, font selection, color and other features offered by modern laser printers. In all modes, VIPP offers conditional logic manipulation of the data. For example a multi-page bill could be printed in duplex (two-sided) mode with the first page selected from a paper tray loaded with a perforated sheet for remittance return, have the back side printed with disclosures and instructions, while subsequent pages of billing detail are printed on plain paper. The VIPP programmer might even insert an OCR (Optical Character Recognition) or MICR (Magnetic Ink Character Recognition) line for remittance processing, complete with a check digit.

Xerox markets an Interactive Developer's Environment (IDE) for VIPP that helps a programmer code applications rapidly and see results of his changes immediately on his monitor.

VIPP is licensed to a specific controller (Sun) running a Solaris operating system. The Xerox controller also runs a proprietary printer control application formerly called DocuSP, and subsequently renamed FreeFlow.

PostScript is a registered trademark of Adobe Corporation.

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