Gene Gable

Gene Gable's picture
Gene Gable has spent a lifetime in publishing, editing and the graphic arts and is currently a technology consultant and writer. After a decade in commercial typesetting and design services, he chronicled the desktop-publishing revolution from his post as publisher and president of Publish magazine. With nine international editions, Publish became the leading global resource on the use of digital technology for print and Web production. Gable served on the operational boards of International Data Group's PCWorld, The Web and PC Games magazines and was earlier publisher of Sporting Times magazine. During his tenure at Ziff-Davis Gable was on the executive team responsible for major business events such as Comdex, Networld+Interop and JavaOne. As president of Seybold Seminars and publisher of The Seybold Report, Gable managed a global slate of conferences, trade shows and other graphic-arts educational products. During his leadership Seybold events featured prominent speakers such as Arthur Sulzberger Jr., publisher of the New York Times, Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer, Christie Hefner, president of Playboy Enterprises, Bruce Chizen, CEO of Adobe Systems, and Daniel Carp, CEO of Eastman Kodak. Gable has spoken at events around the world and has written extensively on graphic design, intellectual-property rights, and publishing production in books and for magazines such as Print, U&lc, ID, Macworld, Graphic Exchange, AGI, and The Seybold Report. His clients have included A-list brands in technology and financial services. Gable's interest in graphic design history and letterpress printing resulted in his popular columns "Heavy Metal Madness" and "Scanning Around with Gene" here on Follow Gene on Twitter:
  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on June 26, 2003

    The promise of the Web was that it would build communities of like-minded people, expand individual expression and bring vast warehouses of knowledge to otherwise barren desktops. While some of those goals may have been met, I've found through my involvement with letterpress printing and other topics, that joining Web communities can also be like going back to high school, complete with peer pressure, class systems and insider cliques. And somewhere, if you look hard enough, valuable education.

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on June 12, 2003

    Since I started this column in February, I've heard from and met quite a few other letterpress hobbyists and they all seem to have one thing in common -- they either worked at a newspaper back in the "old days" of metal typesetting, or they have a fascination for fine, limited-edition books.

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on May 29, 2003

    Note: Prior to the 1960s, the term "printer" referred to the men and women who set type and composed pages, not to the operators of presses who were called pressmen. Printers were the highest paid members of a shop because they had to be skilled in language, composition, and machine operation. In this dispatch, "printer" is referred to in its historical context.

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on May 15, 2003

    I feel fortunate to have grown up at the tail end of the black and white era -- a time that now seems less complicated and in the dewy mist of memo

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on May 1, 2003

    I've always been immune to minor physical pain. Not because I'm brave -- I think it's just a case of poor circulation or some rare nerve disorder.

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on April 17, 2003

    I've always been a sucker for monograms.

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on March 20, 2003

    If eyes are the windows to the human soul, then keyboards are the windows to the souls of machines. We focus on the screens because they are obvious and flashy and have the most to say. But just as we look into the eyes to tell us the truth that no amount of words can reveal, so I look to keyboards. There is only so much the machine can do if the material going in is flawed or forced in through a painful portal.

    And if indeed what we do is called page "composition," then we should demand good instruments between us and the pages we produce (see Figure 1).

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on March 6, 2003

    Some people choose hobbies that serve as antidotes to their work selves -- high-risk extreme sports on Saturday, mild-mannered, cautious office wor

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on February 20, 2003

    Last column I laid out how, through a fluke in timing and an addiction to eBay, I ended up with a driveway full of hot-metal printing and typesetting equipment -- the start of a new hobby. After a lifetime of working in high-production environments, I have learned that the physical tools are actually secondary, even though that's where most people start. What matters more to getting the job done is the strength of the workforce and how they interact with each other.

  • Features: Written by Gene Gable on February 6, 2003

    Introduction: Creativepro editor-in-chief Pamela Pfiffner has been kind enough to provide this valuable access to me so that