What is Desktop Publishing? Some History and an Answer

If writers like Mark Twain were still alive today and asked "What is desktop publishing?" most writers, artists and businessmen who have benefited from it would probably answer, "It's the best thing that has happened to home-made publications." Why? Because desktop publishing has made printing, electronic (ebooks) and physical (traditional books), so much better in terms of aesthetics, affordability and profitability.

what is desktop publishing

What is Desktop Publishing?

The whole idea of desktop publishing is that it allows the home, small or independent publisher to control the layout of his book, newsletter, magazine, poster, brochure or any other media in the comfort of his home. Previously, these tools were only available to big publishers who could decide what was published and distributed. Now, anyone with a little bit of computer savvy can publish just by using a piece of software on a notebook or desktop computer.

In Mark Twain's day this process was slow and laborious and required an expensive printing press, but today, desk information on desktop publishing and the availability of affordable software packages have leveled the playing field.

So, how did desktop publishing come about? In 1985, the first modern layout program to use WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) software was introduced. It was called MacPublisher which first ran on the original 128K Macintosh computer. Shortly after it was introduced, the Apple Laser Writer printer came out to allow personal computer users to print quality documents. Since then, people have been asking "what is desktop publishing" and after figuring out how powerful it is, they bought the hardware and software to create quality documents at home and in their small businesses.

Later in July of that same year, software provider Aldus introduced the high-end software package PageMaker which instantly became the standard software for desktop publishing for quite sometime. Aldus PageMaker rapidly gained prominence, especially with newspaper and magazine owners who were using the more expensive commercial phototypesetting tools to print their articles. They were so popular that even the term "desktop publishing" was credited to the software corporation's founder Paul Brainerd for his successful campaigning and distributing information on desktop publishing.

Many other desktop publishing software packages and printers were introduced in the market following this success. The Adobe Systems released the LaserWriter, LaserWriter Plus printers, Adobe PostScript and its latest creation, Adobe InDesign. Macintosh II, Linotronic and Ventura Publishers were also introduced along with other more basic software and printers.

From typesetting in the past to cheaper printing in the 80's to more software production in the 90's until the creation of more user-friendly and quality layout software today. information on desktop publishing is showing the promise of more features and developments. We can barely imagine how much easier, faster and more efficient publishing documents will be in the future.

The excellence of these software packages today is good enough to get everyone asking "what is desktop publishing" and how can I use it to print out scrapbook pages, write and publish my own books, create brochures, business cards and more. Some may enjoy the design process so much that they want to find out about starting a desktop publishing business. Too bad great literary writers like Mark Twain didn't get to see this huge leap in electronic and physical printing.

What is Desktop Publishing - Desk Top Publishing

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.
Enter Your E-mail Address
Enter Your First Name (optional)

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Write, Self Publish and Sell Your Ebook on the Web.

Most-Read Articles

How to Write An Ebook

All About Publishing

Gifts for Writers

Promoting Your Book