Dalim Software Elevator Pitch

Posted by Scott Tully on Wed, Feb 10, 2016 @ 05:01 PM

Tags: TWiST, workflow, ES, Dalim ES, Dalim TWiST, Dalim Software

Join me in a first person, inner monologue based on the concept of an "Elevator Pitch"...

"I'm a proven, passionate practitioner of process control" doesn't exactly roll off the tongue. Green belt, black belt, yellow belt? Yeah I earned one, but no one but a 'lean' peer gives a '_______', so forget that. Administrator, Project Manager, Team Leader, Evangelist, Catalyst, Guru -- did someone just holler "BINGO!" ?

[as in the conference call or on-line presentation game Bulls#%t Bingo]

Heck, I don't even have a NAPC business card. I do have a title though: Solutions Architect. It's certainly applicable, but too broad. There is, however, a nickname, actually two words, with which I got tagged with a decade ago and have long since embraced: Dalim Dude.

Go ahead, tell 'em. You're the Dude...


Turning to you, I declare:

"I've been a Dalim Software user, administrator and advocate since 2002. I even served a two-year term (2005-07) as President of the [North American] Dalim Software Users Organization (DUO). Since joining NAPC in 2012, I've relished the opportunity of fulfilling an amalgam of technical, sales and ombudsman support roles for our Dalim Software offerings: Dalim TWiST and Dalim ES."

You nod, and I continue, in staccato cadence:

"TWiST is my [favorite] toolset."

I'd love to share it with you. Never seen it? Allow me to demonstrate it. Own it? Let me help you [your organization] optimize your workflows. Administrate it? Let me show a tip or two.

"In my view, no agency, printer or premedia department should be without TWiST."

I follow with:

I'm passionate about ES [Enterprise Solution] too. Project Management, Softproofing, Digital Asset Management with TWiST 'under the hood'. Smart Views, metadata, taxonomy and Custom Job Tickets...its all I could ever ask for.

Reaching our floor, I close:

I call ES the "shop in a box". It's everything an organization [like yours] needs to facilitate all aspects of visual communications production, in one package."


Before you dial or write, be aware there are two Scotts at NAPC: Scott Creamer, Director of Support Operations and me. So, when you call and Kelly responds, "which Scott?" all you have to say is, "the Dude, I wanna talk with the Dalim Dude". If writing, all you need to remember is NAPC is passionate about Dalim Software, so put 'em together and you're there: dalim@napc.com.

 

Or, click the button below:

Talk to the Dude

 

DALiM TWiST does what?

Posted by NAPC Marketing on Fri, Apr 17, 2015 @ 09:52 AM

Tags: creative workflow, video, tutorial, TWiST, Dalim, DAM Systems, software solutions, DAM, graphics

twist-designed-black-2

All videos in our 5 Things You Didn't Know You Could Do In DALiM TWiST series are now live on a dedicated channel on Flathead U. This series of videos produced and presented by NAPC Solutions Architect, Scott Tully educates and enlightens users and administrators of DALiM TWiST by illustrating the capabilities of the software as pertains to workflow engineering and graphic arts production.

Each video in the series is a run time of less than three minutes, and is sure to enlighten or remind users that there is always more than one way to get things done. Covering workflows with multiple branches, the PDF concatenation feature, conditional pauses, and the features allowing for translation of a spreadsheet into a run list, this is the ultimate in DALiM TWiST schooling.

WATCH Episode One - "Stick a FORK in it" contrasts the methodolgy of building TWiST workflows with multiple branches versus a linear workflow featuring the TWiST Basic Tool: Fork.

WATCH Episode Two - "Hidden in Plain Sight" illuminates the documented, yet overlooked PDF concatenation feature of the FilterGroup tool, providing the fundamentals of the tool's configuration and demonstrating its unique feature.

WATCH Episode Three - "All Good Things" introduces TWiST's capability of providing for 'conditional pauses' based on logic as expressed within the WaitOn tool.

WATCH Episode Four - "Six Ways To Sunday" moves away from the tool-based example and conclusion model, revealing a unconventional approach to TWiST's input methodology.

WATCH Episode Five - "X Marks The Start" turns conventional usage of TWiST on it's head, introducing SetParamFromXML's ability to translate a spreadsheet into a "run list" as well as some additional, helpful programmatic "X's".

Visit our dedicated DALiM TWiST Channel at Flathead U anytime to review and share this video series.

Learn More About DALiM TWiST

5 Things: DALiM TWiST Video Series

Posted by NAPC Marketing on Mon, Mar 23, 2015 @ 09:16 AM

Tags: creative, creative workflow, video, digital assets, TWiST, Dalim, DAM Systems, digital asset management, DAM, workflow, graphics, production

 

twist-designed-black

School is in session with our very own Solutions Architect and TWiST Expert, Scott Tully. It is time to get out of Spring Break mode and get ready to learn 5 Things You Didn't Know You Could Do In DALiM TWiST

This is 5-part video series, aims to educate and enlighten users and administrators of Dalim TWiST by illustrating the capabilities of the TWiST software as pertains to workflow engineering and graphic arts production. As the theme implies, the TWiST toolbox is so intuitive, users quickly achieve their workflow objectives and stop, never realizing all the workflow automation and intelligence that TWiST has to offer.

Episode One: "Stick a FORK in it" contrasts the methodolgy of building TWiST workflows with multiple branches versus a linear workflow featuring the TWiST Basic Tool: Fork.

Episode Two: "Hidden in Plain Sight" illuminates the documented, yet overlooked PDF concatenation feature of the FilterGroup tool, providing the fundamentals of the tool's configuration and demonstrating its unique feature.

Episode Three: "All Good Things" introduces TWiST's capability of providing for 'conditional pauses' based on logic as expressed within the WaitOn tool.

Episode Four: "Six Ways To Sunday" : "Six ways to Sunday" moves away from the tool-based example and conclusion model, revealing a unconventional approach to TWiST's input methodology.

Episode Five: "X Marks The Start": Turns conventional usage of TWiST on it's head, introducing SetParamFromXML's ability to translate a spreadsheet into a "run list" as well as some additional, helpful programmatic "X's".

Tully has produced this video blog series to share both his passion for, and intimate knowledge of, all things TWiST, knowing you would appreciate the timely tips or insightful reminders about this specific tool or a underlying feature.

We are confident that the 5 Things series will ignite your imagination and fuel your pursuit of ever more efficient, effective TWiST workflows.

Each video in the 5 Things You Didn't Know You Could Do In DALiM TWiST series is a run time of less than three minutes, and each episode is sure to enlighten or remind users that there is always more than one way to get things done.

Watch Video 1: Stick a FORK in it RIGHT HERE

Watch Video 2: Hidden in Plain Sight RIGHT HERE

Watch Video 3: All Good Things RIGHT HERE

Watch Video 4: Six Ways To Sunday RIGHT HERE

Watch Video 5: X Marks The Start RIGHT HERE

You can see all episodes on the DALiM TWiST Channel at Flathead U

Learn More About DALiM TWiST   

Adobe: When Clouds Are Welcome

Posted by NAPC Marketing on Fri, May 17, 2013 @ 11:31 AM

Tags: TWiST, apps, cloud software, Howlr, Adobe, creative cloud, graphics

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This is an update to one of our most popular blog posts:

Adobe is embracing the cloud with a streamlined service that issues a monthly charge for its apps. Lots of people aren’t happy, and the other day our COO stepped in to detail his skepticism. 

It’s not all bad news. In fact, some of us love clouds.

There will never be an ideal time to take the Adobe apps to the cloud, and there is always going to be a very uncomfortable transitionary period. Now is as good a time as any, especially when Creative Cloud is hosted on Amazon Web Services. The immediate benefits to the developers at Adobe and their ability to push updates faster is the real sell.

A common complaint is that people don’t want to have a persistent online connection to use Photoshop. You need to be online when you install and license your software, and annual membership users will need to validate every 30 days. Users will still be able to use products for 99 days even if you’re offline. This has proven true, we havent heard any complaints about 'not being able to work without being connected'

When it comes to coordinating with a group or team, files created by the Creative Cloud apps can be shared like any other file. For example, you can share files through Email, FTP, and so on. You have 20 gigs of storage space that you can use to sync files between your devices and access them whenever you want.

Creative Cloud doesn’t wall you off from other users who aren’t members of Creative Cloud either. You can let non-member view the files in a browser. Viewers can view relevant metadata, turn layers on and off and even download files for editing, all without knowing what Adobe Creative Cloud is.

People have been concerned with retaining ownership over what they create through the Creative Cloud, but as the myths article explains, Adobe claims no ownership or copyright over any of your work. It’s all yours.

The biggest issue we've seen is what our biggest fear was- the latency and delay in opening, saving, and working from the cloud is crushing production. Internet pipes are still too costly for anything similar to the experience creatives and studio folks are used to with local high performance file servers. Once the dream of CFOs and financial planners, pushing these assets into the cloud is driving up labor costs due to the sheer inefficiency of trying to access enormous files across the WAN.

At this point, it's clear the CC suite of applications has been a great success for Adobe, and usefull to the end users. Production though, is still being kept local due to access speeds and times

Dalim TWiST Best Practice: Managing Regular Expressions

Posted by Scott Tully on Tue, Apr 30, 2013 @ 01:05 PM

Tags: Best Practice, TWiST, RegEx, Regular Expressions, SetParamFromRE

Ask any experienced Dalim TWiST Administrator, "what's the key to TWiST workflow engineering success?" and they will likely respond with "Reg Ex" (short for Regular Expressions) and "SetParamFromRE" (set parameter from regular expression). I would add "TwistTable" and say, "master these three elements and you can do just about anything in TWiST".

Even so, I wish to bring to your attention a fourth element, an often unnoticed, unused feature of the SetParamFromRE tool: the "Manage Expressions" feature.

Expressions Button

 

So, what have you been missing?

Using the Manage Expressions feature allows you to save, and over time, build-up a "library" of expressions that will undoubtedly save you and your organization hundreds of TWiST man-hours. On a more personal-level, having a library of expressions will save hours of [workflow] debugging heartache.

If I had a dollar for every time I had typed [getmem Document SizeMM_Width], ran a file, found the value to be empty and gone back into SetParamFromRE to fix it…(sharp Admins already see the issue, don't you?)...I could have bought a Dunkin' Donuts franchise.

The problem, if you have not spotted it, is a single keystroke: "m". The correct syntax is: [getMem Document SizeMM_Width], which returns the value of the variable $TwistTable(Document,SizeMM_Width), the width of the document in millimeters (mm).

You see, simple typo's are thieves of time. Taking action to prevent them is a wise investment that will promptly pay dividends. I encourage you to start building your own library of frequently used expressions, today.

Where to begin?

A great place to start is the "Document" category. This default TwistTable category contains the most commonly used/needed workflow variables like geometry, resolution, colorspace, and channels. Just drop a FileCheck and ShowMemories tool in your most active production workflow and you'll quickly see that there are 36+ variables containing 'decision-making' values.

Expressions Menu

Heck, I'm willing to bet you are already calling 2 or more Document category variables in the majority of your published workflows now.

Once you've become familiar with the functionality of the Manage Expressions feature, it's up to you to make using it a part of your workflow engineering process. I'm confident that you're already thinking of adding a few custom expressions, you know the ones, those situational statements that took a bit of trial and error to work out, as prime candidates for your new library.

Here's a non-TwistTable expression that every TWiST Admin needs. In the image below, I'm using the command expr, to convert millimeters (mm) to inches (in) on-the-fly. This expression, along with "Convert SizeMM_Height to Inches" were probably the first expressions I saved when Manage Expressions was added to the SetParamFromRE tool in 2007.

Managing Regular Expressions

You may be wondering, "if I'm saving these expressions, where is the parameter file?"

Your valuable keystrokes are stored automatically by TWiST in a separate, parameter-like configuration file: Expressions.cnf. Location: /symlnks/var/6.0/setup/TWiST/Expressions.cnf

Take care friends, it's easy to overwrite this valuable file [arrrgh]…so I suggest keeping a copy outside of your TWiST environment as your investment grows.

One last nugget: if you manage a multi-host environment or work in a multi-site organization, you can distribute the Expressions.cnf file. In this way, you can share your contributions with a colleague and build-up the ultimate expressions library.

As always, consult your User Documentation as the primary resource for all things TWiST.