HolidayBuyer's Guide

Ink2 and SharedBook make printing online content a snap

PALM DESERT, Calif.--The series of tubes is rife with rich content, but a few companies are finding ways to let us print it on-demand.

Do you skip right to the blank-inside greeting cards like I do? It's not just that I hate the contrived sentiments pre-chosen for me, but I want the power to customize. Ink2 could be a good option for extreme customization.

Any content you find on the Web is game. Choose an image, slap it on a card, calendar or postcard. Fiddle with the layout however you want, pick your text, font, color, size, style and position. Add a photo if you feel like it. Fill out the envelope and $3 plus postage later you're done. The card is printed using digital offset photo printing, and is then sent off directly to its destination within 24 hours.

My favorite feature: there's no minimum order requirement. Send one card, or--if you can afford it--100. Sweet.

And remember books? SharedBook helps you pull content from around the Net and publish as a Web flipbook or hard-copy manuscript.

Using SharedBook's reverse-publishing platform, an online flipbook can be shared with anyone via e-mail. Your recipient can follow the e-mail link and add to the book or buy it as is. SharedBook now offers a suite of APIs that enables any Web site to integrate its content into ShareBook, thereby giving any site another way to monetize its content beyond advertising.

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