FAQ's and Troubleshooting


  = Refers to software programs and applications that are used to create and format graphic/picture files; Adobe Illustrator, Acrobat, etc.
  = Refers to electronic desktop publishing programs such as QuarkXpress and PageMaker.
  = Refers to communication and electronic access related software and terminology; internet, FTP, modem, Fetch, etc.
  = Refers to graphic picture formats and terminology; EPS, PDF, etc.
  = Refers to compression software and terminology; SIT, SEA, etc.
  = General terminology; includes general computer terms, processes, hardware, AccuWeather terms and processes, etc.
* underlined words indicate further explanation elsewhere in the glossary.
Acrobat (Adobe) - The software programs used to create and read PDFs. The program to create the PDF is called Acrobat Distiller and the program to read the file is the free and ubiquitous Acrobat Reader.

Adobe Illustrator - Drawing program. The main drawing application used by NP Graphics artists. This drawing application is preferred over Freehand, because of its workflow compatibility with weather page assembly including automation, navigation, graphs, et. al.

attachment - email attachment. A method of transferring files electronically via an email message. NOT to be used as the main transfer of client's weather package. This is the worst method of transferring a weather package, because we cannot tell right away if the message has reached its destination.

automation - the process used to assemble weather pages automatically. A completely automated weather page can plot temperatures on a client's supermap, open the client's QuarkXPress document base, enter all textual information and data, place all daily maps and graphics, save the document with the date of publication and send it to a printer in Newspaper Graphics for editing.

bitmapped image - this is what often occurs at the client's end when there is a problem with an EPS map or graphic in a weather page. A novice client will often use terms such as "squiggily", "fax-like", "jagged" and "rough" to describe a bitmapped image. Another indication that the graphic is bitmapped is that the text on the map or graphic may be unreadable. NP graphics will request the client to at least fax the p
color definitions:
process & custom colors - when colors are created as process colors the colors are represented as percentages of the four cmyk colors. For example the color green is represented as 100% cyan(c), 0% magenta(m), 100% yellow(y) and 0% black(k). If the color green is created as a color named "green" and is not made to be a process color it is called a custom color and an extra color plate called "green" will be outputted when printing separat spot color - the method of using one color or shades of that color in a newspaper usually combined with black.
cmyk - the process color system used by newspapers where c=cyan(blue), m=magenta(red), y=yellow, k=black.
rgb - refers to the color system where r=red, g=green, b=blue. Used mainly for digital color graphics such as Internet and TV graphics.

composite - When ouputting a weather page, a composite has all the colors printed on one document. Examples: a color printout of a weather page from the color printer, the printouts that are mailed to clients. (see separations)

compressed file - Compression is a method used to make files smaller in memory size to facilitate the electronic transfer of files to clients. The most common compression software used by and for MACs is the program, Stuffit. For PCs the most common program is called Zipit; MACs cannot create ZIP(.zip) files. Stuffit can create two basic compression files, SEA and SIT. These are nearly the same, but we send S
cross-platform - Term used when referring to issues involving the exchange of information beween MACs and PCs. QuarkXpress and Adobe both have created PC versions of their graphic software applications. The impetus for this is based on sales and profits,however the original versions of these applications were created for MAC workstations and there are many cross-platform problems that need to be addressed between the MAC and
DOS - The basic operating system of PCs. Instead of a click-and-drag Windows/MAC desktop environment, DOS requires the use of typed text commands to perform basic functions such as accessing a directory or opening a program. Our Systems personel prefer instructing PC clients to use DOS commands instead of using programs like WSFTP.

Dimensions (Adobe) - Drawing program. Used by NP Graphic artists to create 3-dimensional graphics. This is the application used to create most of the "blow-outs" on regional maps.

direct dial - or modem-dialing (see BBS)

download- The action of receiving a file electronically; you download email messages. When clients access their weather page from us they are downloading the page. Uploading is what we do when we put a page on line for the client to access. Uploading = sending; Downloading = receiving.

electronic publishing software - Used to create any kind of publication from a business card to a multicolor magazine. QuarkXpress and InDesign® are the two most popular electronic publishing software programs. The programs are used to bring together text and graphics into one layout/ document to create a newspaper page.

EPS (.eps) - a graphic picture format. Encapsulated PostScript™. Most of the graphic files created for weather pages are saved in this format. It is important to note that although QuarkXpress allows its documents to be saved as an EPS graphic, it is not a "true" EPS format compared to a graphic created and saved in EPS format in say, Adobe Illustrator. Therefore a QuarkXpress weather page saved a
FTP (File Transfer Protocol) - A method used by newspaper clients to access their weather package via the Internet. Using FTP access programs such as Fetch or WSFTP clients can access their specific directory to get their weather package. Some clients use their web browser such as Netscape Communicator to access their FTP directory, but this is not recommended; AccuWeather's compute
FTP push - see FTP

Fetch - An Internet FTP site access program for MAC. Very user-friendly for clients accessing their weather from our FTP site. (For PC users we recommend WSFTP Pro.) Not to be confused with an Extensis Pro program formerly of the same name.). Created by Dartmouth University. Is available at Dartmouth website, www.dartmouth.edu or any of the large shareware web sites such as www.download.com. A registrat
fonts- Text/ typeface style. Fonts can be very complicated. Whole groups of system fonts have been created such as Adobe TrueType, Adobe Type1 and Bitstream. Some are geared for PC systems for mainly word processing, while others are geared for MACs and graphical work. This can lead to font conflict when exchanging documents between PCs and MACs. Common fonts used on MAC systems include Helvetica, Franklin Gothic and Times w
FreeHand (Macromedia) - Drawing program. NP Graphics artists use this drawing application, but not as much as Adobe Illustrator. All of the Associated Press maps are created in Freehand.

graphic picture format - All graphic pictures, whether they are art program drawings, photos, satellite images, etc., must be saved in one format or another to allow them to be placed (also called importing) onto an electronic publishing document such as QuarkXpress. The formats most commonly used for newspapers are EPS, TIFF, and PICT. Usually these graphics have a 3-letter extension after the file name such
ISP (Internet Service Provider) - (Internet Service Provider) offers subcribers such services related to the Internet such as Internet connection hookup and email.

Internet - The communication network which allows for computers all over the world to talk to each other. The World Wide Web (www) is just a part of the Internet. FTP sites, web sites and email all use the Internet. Internet connections are offered most commonly by an Internet Service Provider or ISP such as America OnLine, Compuserve and LazerLink. The quality and speed of a client's Internet connection can
Internet Explorer - by Microsoft; a web browser

MAC - (Macintosh®/Apple® is the desktop graphics industry standard workstation computer. Until recently most of the top-of-the-line graphic programs were geared for Mac. The pre-press support group for the largest printing company in the U.S., R.R. Donnelley, is MAC-based.

modem - The device used to connect a computer to the internet or connect one computer to another. Newspaper clients using the BBS access method need to use a modem; Most clients accessing via the internet also need to use a modem to connect to the internet, however larger businesses are getting "super-connections" that allow them to bypass the modem. modem speeds: currently the most common and fastest
Netscape Communicator - a web browser

PC - (personal computer) Refers to any computer used for desktop publishing that is not a MAC such as IBM®, Dell™, Gateway®, etc.. PCs basic operating system is called DOS. However Microsoft® Windows 3.1, 95 & 98 and WindowsNT are programs designed to create a "MAC" (user-friendly) environment for the PC. WindowsNT is MicroSoft's answer to the Macintosh® desktop graphic workstation (see WindowsNT)PDF (.pdf) - Portable Document Format. PDFs are created using Adobe Acrobat sotware. They were originally designed for Internet and Intranet use to exchange stand-alone forms and documents such as registration and odering forms, legal documents, and manuals. Also used on many CD-Roms for instructions and other text and graphic information.