Produce & Publish At A Glance

Summary of key facts about the components and numerous potential uses of Produce & Publish

What is Produce & Publish?

Produce & Publish is a component-based solution for the generation of high-quality PDF documents. Media-independent formats like XML and HTML can be used as sources for the PDFs.  The process makes use of external converters which offer a level of quality comparable to that of Adobe Indesign.  The look and formatting of the documents is controlled by Cascading Stylesheets (CSS3).  This offers the following advantages: 

  • Easy management and modification of documents

  • Guarantees that documents are consistent in appearance

  • Significantly reduced costs for provision of PDFs in different sizes, colours and in black and white.  Links can either be clickable for display on a screen or printable in URL format.

For what can Produce & Publish be used?

  • Fully automatic typesetting for rapidly changing documents, e.g. daily reports, magazines, manuals etc.

  • Individualised documents like business cards, letters, invoices, Direct Marketing, collections
  • Catalogues

œœWhich components are available as part of  Produce & Publish?

  • The Produce & Publish server receives conversion requests, accesses the appropriate converter and returns the generated PDF document.  The Produce & Publish server has access to a web service gateway; it can therefore cater to user-defined programming languages and be integrated easily into third-party applications.

  • Produce & Publish client libraries to connect the Produce & Publish server with the relevant programming languages via its web service gateway

    • Available: Python und PHP
    • Price: free, Licence: Open-Source

  • Produce & Publish connectors facilitate the functionality of Produce & Publish as an add-on in an application (e.g. PDF generation from a CMS).

    • Available: Produce & Publish Plone Client Connector

    • Price: free, Licence: open-source

  • The Produce & Publish authoring environment integrates management of contents and assets, the control and configuration of the conversion, and publication within a modern and secure Content Management System (Plone).  All functionalities are accessible via a web-based user interface.

    • Price: from 1,500 €, Licence: proprietary

  • The Produce & Publish DOCX converter makes it possible to import Word documents whilst keeping the most important format specifications intact in the Produce & Publish authoring environment.

• Licence: free/proprietary

How can I try out Produce & Publish? 

Most Produce & Publish components are available for free. A fee is required only for the PDF converter. It is therefore very easy for users to carry out extensive testing of Produce & Publish. We have also set up a test environment for this purpose. Please ask about individual trial access, which we can set up according to your specific requirements.

Supported PDF converters

  • PrinceXML Version 8
  • PDFreactor Version 6
  • Antennahouse Formatter Version 6

All PDF converters work with XML/HTML as the input format and CSS3 for the provision of layout. The converters all supply a very good quality of PDF and differ only with regard to specific details (e.g. colour management, tagged PDF, PDF/A).  We have a long history of regular productive interaction with the manufacturers of the PDF converters, and can assist quickly and efficiently in case of problems.

Supported PDF Features

  • CSS3 Paged Media
  • PDF bookmarks
  • Pictures (CMYK, RGB, spot colours), SVG
  • Barcode, QR-Code
  • MathML
  • Truetype, Opentype Fonts
  • PDF forms
  • PDF signatures, encryption, restrictions
  • PDF overlay and merging
  • Printer's marks
  • Tagged PDF (Section 508)
  • PDF/A
  • Unicode, bidirectional texts
  • Raster Image Processor (RIP) 

œœWhat can Produce & Publish do?

  • Multi-lingual typesetting, including Arabic, Greek, Hebrew etc.
  • Typesetting of formulae
  • Tables, including those that span multiple pages
  • Multi-column typesetting
  • Pagination
  • Support for foot- and endnotes
  • Generate tables of contents and indices
  • PDF forms
  • PDF bookmarks
  • Signed and/or encrypted PDF documents
  • PDF/A

œœWhat technology does Produce & Publish rely on?

Our Produce & Publish components are largely based upon implementations in the Python programming language. We also use the application server Zope, the content management system Plone and the web framework Pyramid.

œœWhat additional benefits can I gain from Produce & Publish?

Produce & Publish is not an "off-the shelf" product; it can accommodate the user's individual needs.  Accordingly, we are happy to offer support to clients requiring bespoke solutions. Our range of services encompasses requirements analysis, configuration, installation and hosting as well as handbooks and training. Feel free to get in touch - we would be pleased to put together an offer tailored to your exact requirements.

œœWho is currently using Produce & Publish?

  • German Society for Haematology and Medical Oncology (DGHO): for a medical guidelines portal
  • Distributed European Infrastructure for Supercomputing Applications (DEISA): for user documentation
  • Partnership For Advanced Computing In Europe (PRACE): for user documentation
  • European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (OSHA): on-the-fly generation of PDFs from CMS content
  • Immanuel Social Welfare Group: staff magazine, staff brochures
  • Stuttgart Media University: Creation of a university publication from CMS content
  • VDI/VDE-IT Berlin
  • Bavarian Correctional School, Straubing
  • University of Jyväskylä, Finland
  • The City University of New York: university calendar, 300-page student handbook


Wir are using Plone in our school e.g. for the generation of school reports and protocols of class conference and have been searching for reliable solution for generating forms and reports. The product SmartPrintNG (now "Produce & Publish") is very suitable for our purposes due its flexiable configuration options. Andreas Jung gave a hands-on-training and communicate the relevant know-how in order to work effectively with SmartPrintNG (even for non-technical people like teachers).

Alois Mayr
Albrecht-Ernst-Gynmasium, Oettingen in Bayern