Web publishing provider Quark is releasing an integrated enterprise publishing platform designed to automate the creation and delivery of rich content.
Quark Publishing Platform is intended to ease the publishing of interactive content across formats including Web, print and digital. According to Quark VP of Marketing Gavin Drake, the new platform comes in response to changes in how content is consumed.
“Consumers and employees are spending more time away from traditional channels,” Drake told CMSWire during a phone interview. “They are spending more time on smartphones and tablets. There are only so many hours and days in the week, so that time is coming from other channels.”
Solving the Fragmentation Challenge
This trend leads to what Drake called a “fragmentation challenge” for content publishers. “Even if you are publishing for mobile, Android and iOS are different devices from different manufacturers with different hardware and ways of dealing with software. And developing content for multiple types of access is cost-prohibitive. Most enterprise content is unstructured, there is no single version of the truth.”
By automating the creation and delivery of “smart content,” Drake said the new Quark platform can help publishers solve the fragmentation problem. “Smart content knows about itself — where it’s going, who the audience is,” he explained. “It’s also contextual, so for example a mobile user would get specific content delivered when they were near a certain business.”
By automatically assigning metadata to and populating content, Drake said the platform also takes the responsibility for accuracy away from designers, who can then spend more time on activities such as making last-minute changes and reviewing content.
Modules of the Quark Web Publishing Platform include a platform-independent, enterprise-class Java server application, a publishing server, a tool for authoring structured XML, publishing platform for Web and desktop clients and the Quark Xpress Enterprise Edition design application.
Quark Turns In-house for Innovation
Since its acquisition by private equity firm Platinum Equity in August 2011, Quark has been working with the Platinum Equity M&A team to identify and pursue growth opportunities, such as its May 2012 purchase of Mobile IQ, a vendor of cloud-based digital publishing apps for smartphones and tablets. In particular, Quark intends to create an end-to-end digital enterprise publishing suite for mobile devices, and the release of an in-house-developed publishing platform that can automatically format content for mobile as well as other channels shows that Quark is keeping all options open in pursuit of this goal.
Quark Keeps Fighting
A ZDNet article about the availability of Quark Publishing System 9.1 in October 2011 referred to Quark as “down, but not out.” The anonymous article author stated that they still preferred “Quark XPress to Adobe's InDesign or any other page-layout program for that matter, even though the application has lost tremendous market share in the last ten years” and concluded that, “Quark may have lost the edge in digital publishing, but it still seems to be innovating.” With the Web Publishing Platform, Quark is signaling it remains committed to duking it out on the digital publishing battleground.
The Quark Web Publishing Platform is an XML-based open solution architected to work with existing enterprise infrastructures and business systems.