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Startup snapshot: Circular Software

Ken Jones is a publishing software expert with over ten years experience as Technical Production Manager, software trainer and developer at DK and Penguin Group UK. Ken’s company ‘Circular Software’ provides software tools and services for a range of illustrated book publishing customers including Hachette, Macmillan, Penguin Random House, Thames & Hudson and Nosy Crow. Contact Ken via twitter @circularken or www.circularsoftware.com

1) What exactly is Circular Software?

Circular Software is a UK company that specialises in software for publishers. Alongside consultancy and training courses we also offer software tools that we develop in-house. These workflow apps have come from real-life experience and understanding of book publishing. Before setting up Circular Software I was in-house publishing software trainer, technical production manager and developer for Penguin Group UK, Dorling Kindersley and Pearson for more than 10 years.

2) What problem does it solve?

CircularFLO, our popular app for creating beautiful ebooks for Amazon and Apple directly from InDesign or Print PDFs is used by Hachette, Macmillan, Penguin Random House, Thames & Hudson and Nosy Crow. MasterPlan connects everyone involved in creating illustrated publications to an online, up-to-date view of every spread of every title. Users of MasterPlan pull comments entered online back into InDesign and automatically update the online pages as they work. GreenLight is a desktop tool that allows publishers to set up workflow-specific checklists of house style and production rules that are instantly shared with every InDesign user both in and out of house.

3) Who is your target market?

We mainly work with Illustrated book publishers. We can help provide the technical production advice to improve publisher’s workflows and then also provide the tools and training that helps them implement this easily. Our apps are made to fit in alongside publishers’ existing Adobe InDesign workflows without dictating how they should work.

4) What results do you hope to see over the next few years?

I hope to help the design and editorial staff at UK publishers, including their freelancers, get the most out of the modern software tools that are available to them and to allow them to spend their time being creative. Also, I fancy getting a camper van one day.

5) What will be next for Circular Software?

We will continue to combine the power of the web with modern publishing software to build new tools that support a vital, but sometimes overlooked, section of people working for the publisher—those actually creating the content!  

Circular Software, CircularFlo, software for publishers, UK publishers

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