US006963411B1 (12) United States Patent US 6,963,411 B1 (10) Patent N0.: (45) Date of Patent: Billow et al. (54) OPTIMIZED PRINTING SYSTEM Nov. 8, 2005 Digital Printing Technologies, Oct. 27—Nov. 1, 1996, pp. 227—233. (75) Inventors: Steven A. Billow, Pittsford, NY (US); Sean E. Skelly, Rochester, NY (US); Kenneth D. Stack, Fairport, NY (US) “Digital Color Management” by Edward J. Giorgianni and Thomas E. Madden. Addison—Wesley, 1998, pp. 419—436. (73) Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, NY (US) ( * ) Notice: * cited by examiner Subject' to any disclaimer, the term of this Primary Examiner_Gabriel Garcia patent is extended or adJusted under 35 . U‘SC' 154(k)) by 0 days‘ . (74) Attorney, Agent, or Ftrm—Stephen H. ShaW (21) Appl. N0.: 09/479,420 (22) Flled: . ASSZSILZI’II Exammer—Th1err~y L Pham (57) Jan‘ 7’ 2000 ABSTRACT A computer program product is provided for optimizing a (51) Int. c1.7 ............................................... .. B41J 11/44 printer for driver settings and Color pro?le in Order to (52) US. Cl. ............. .. optimally Print an image on a selected media- Data is stored (58) Field of Search ............................... .. 358/1.13, 1.9, in an indeX ?le for Various Combinations Of printers, printer 358/1_15_1_16, 501, 518 drivers, printer media and color pro?les. The printer driver . 358/113; 358/19; 358/116 that is currently used on the user’s machine for the selected (56) References Cited printer is determined and the printer media selected for the Us‘ PATENT DOCUMENTS printer is identi?ed, e.g., by~a simple query'of the user. One set of steps mvolves choosmg an appropriate stored color 5,559,933 A * 9/1996 Boswell ................... .. 358/115 6,088,480 A * 7/2000 Sakamoto 6,149,323 A * 11/2000 shlma """" " 6,257,693 B1 * 7/2001 Miller et a1. 382/180 applying the chosen color pro?le to the image data, thereby 400/76 generating transformed image data. Another set of steps 347/19 6,571,009 B1 * 5/2003 Nielsen et a1‘ " 2003/0112334 A1 * pro?le for the selected printer-media combination, and . 382/162 . . . . . mvolves retrieving prmter settings for the' selected prmter 6/2003 Kiyokawa .............. .. 348/2071 medla Combmatlon and modlfylng the semngs of the dnver in use for the selected media. Finally the transformed image OTHER PUBLICATIONS data is printed using the modi?ed settings of the printer driver to obtain optimal printing of the image. “Some Simple Techniques for Improving the Print Quality of Digital Images from Kodak Electronic Cameras” by Paul 20 Claims, 3 Drawing Sheets B. Gilman. IS&T’s NIP 12: International Conference on 1751 ACQUIRE MEDIA AND PRINTER DRIVER VERSION 120 1 DETERMINE /F No _.. IS CONFIGURA r/o/v _,IE SUPPORTED 130 TRANSFORM IMAGE DA TA IN TO PROF/LE C ORRE C TION SPA CE 0 FIND CORRECT 0U TPU T COL 01'? PROFILE TRANSFORM IMAGE DA TA IN TO MEDIA OP TIMIZED PRIN TEI? COL OR SPA CE 0 RETRIEVE DRI VER SPECIFIC DA TA MOD/F Y DRIVER SETTINGS PR/N T TRA NSFORMED IMA GE THROUGH MODIFIED PRIN TEI? DRI VER U.S. Patent Nov. 8,2005 / Sheet 1 of3 US 6,963,411 B1 / 0C] 29 ‘Q U K 0o N \f" 9 c 3 / / ‘ m —~ g b [1/ ji? 521E '\. I A it E B Q E [:1 S :1 \ [:1 Q Q Lu Lu \ g‘? ‘F Q J \ 2 ‘2 “NM - U 72' /\ ‘ 55:: If» “ / J76 l 26 30 U.S. Patent US 6,963,411 B1 Sheet 2 0f 3 Nov. 8,2005 700 RECEIVE IMAGE DA TA 7751 ' A COUIRE MEDIA AND PRIN TER DRI VER VERSION DETERMINE IF CONFIGURA TI ON IS SUPPORTED NO 725 7 730 735 FIND CORRECT INPUT COLOR PROF/LE ,1 TRANSFORM IMAGE DA TA IN TO PROFILE C ORRE C T/ON SPA CE INDEX FILE 740 FIND CORREC T OU TPU T COL OR PROFILE 745 TRANSFORM IMAGE DA TA INTO MEDIA OPTIM/ZED PRINTER COLOR SPACE 750 RE TR/E VE DRIVER SPECIFIC DA TA 755 "W MOD/F Y DRIVER SETTINGS 760% FIG. 2 PR/N T TRA NSFORMED IMAGE THROUGH MODIFIED RR/N TER DRIVER EXIT U.S. Patent Nov. 8, 2005 Sheet 3 0f 3 200 RE TRIEVE DR/ VER-SPECIF/C DA TA E/LENAME 205 \ RE TRIE VE DRIVER SPECIFIC DA TA 270 m , RE TR/E VE C URREN T DA TA STRUCTURE SETTINGS 275 LA MODIFY COPY OF DA TA STRUCTURE 220 P CREA TE DEV/CE CON TEXT ON PRIN TER DE VICE WI TH MODIFIED DA TA STRUCTURE I60 PRINT THROUGH PRINTER DE VICE DRIVER FIG. 3 US 6,963,411 B1 US 6,963,411 B1 1 2 OPTIMIZED PRINTING SYSTEM beyond the application layer. The need for this assumption FIELD OF THE INVENTION is the impetus behind support for a “generic” color space such as sRGB. Despite this support, hoWever, many inter pretations of sRGB continue to exist and input devices frequently report sRGB images With different code values. No accommodations for different color spaces (and different input sources) are possible at the driver level Without additional user input specifying the input device. Beyond these problems With color management, the The invention relates generally to the ?eld of printing, and in particular to establishing proper setup of printers and optimiZation of color for different types of media. BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Printers, such as inkjet desktop printers, are noW capable 10 LUTs is Worthless if a user selects the incorrect media or hoWever, a user must be able to properly con?gure the printer driver softWare for the appropriate settings, as directed by either the printer manufacturer or the media manufacturer. There is every indication that most users do not appropriately set the driver settings for the media, Which makes optimal printing very dif?cult, if not impossible, to achieve. Furthermore, to obtain consistent, reliable color, the printing path should be color managed according to the most modem techniques. If a color pro?le is applied for a driver setting different than the setting for Which the pro?le Was built, the results are unpredictable at best. Several high-end softWare products are available on the market today Which alloW a knoWledgeable user to color manage their images. Adobe Photoshop versions 4.0 and later, for example, permit the use of “plug-ins” Which a device driver user interfaces still require the user to make the correct selections. All of the color management built into the of making high quality images. To realiZe this capability, neglects to make any changes beyond the defaults. Because printer drivers are Written to be a generic solution for all of 15 the user’s needs, multiple settings Would need to be made available for user input; consequently, this dependency on the user persists. Some printer drivers exacerbate this prob lem further by providing confusing, inconsistent, or highly 20 technical options to the user. As a result, color management tools are (1) out of the reach of typical imaging softWare applications, and (2) too complicated for most consumers to understand and use. Furthermore, color management systems embedded into 25 operating systems, such as WindoWs, have been used too inconsistently to provide optimum results and do not provide the ability to change driver settings. What is needed is a Way customer can use to transform images from one color space for automating driver setting and color management for the to another. Press Ready, also by Adobe, permits colorimetric rendering intents for proo?ng operations. None of these applications, hoWever, automatically select the correct color user While requiring very little user intervention. 30 transforms based upon image source or the user’s printer. It is up to the user to correctly identify the pro?les to be used. Furthermore, it is still up to the user to con?gure his or her driver correctly. Image color matching (ICM) version 1.0 and 2.0 have been incorporated into Microsoft Operating systems Win SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An object of the invention is to automatically assist and encourage a user to properly con?gure a printer driver to the appropriate settings. 35 Another object of the invention is to provide a printing path that can be color managed for consistent and reliable color. doWs 95, WindoWs 98, and WindoWs NT 4.0 and later. These The present invention is directed to overcoming one or systems take advantage of the operating systems embedded Graphics Device Interface (GDI) to correctly manage color more of the problems set forth above. Brie?y summariZed, according to one aspect of the present invention, a computer 40 betWeen monitors and other output devices. Despite its capability, ICM has been implemented only sporadically in program product is provided for optimiZing a printer for driver settings and color pro?le in order to optimally print an most applications and at times incorrectly. As a result, vendors of both hardWare and softWare have not fully image on a selected media. At an initial stage, data is stored, e.g., in an index ?le, for various combinations of printers, embraced ICM as a solution to their color management 45 printer drivers, printer media and color pro?les. Next, the needs. As With the imaging applications mentioned above, printer driver that is currently used on the user’s machine for the selected printer is determined and the printer media selected for the printer is identi?ed, e.g., by a simple query ICM has no capabilities to automatically set printer driver options. Printer Drivers by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) also incorporate color management. For instance, of the user. After an appropriate one of the stored color 50 by assuming an input image is in sRGB color space, a printer manufacturer may implement color look-up tables (LUTs) Within their printer driver to give excellent reproduced color. This solution, hoWever, has tWo distinct disadvantages. First, these LUTs Will ordinarily be optimiZed for only one data, thereby generating transformed image data. The stored printer driver settings for the selected printer-media combi nation are retrieved and the settings of the driver are 55 paper formulation—images on other papers Will be com promised. By specifying multiple paper types, a printer OEM can additionally support all of their media at the expense of some added complexity. The HP895 driver, for example, supports 16 media types. For obvious reasons, the OEM printer drivers do not ordinarily offer any LUTs 60 The second disadvantage is that the driver must assume a knoWledge of the source of the image. Metadata, that is, descriptive data associated With an image, is not persistent thereupon adjusted for the selected media. Finally the trans formed image data is printed through the modi?ed settings of the printer driver to obtain optimal printing of the image. The advantage of the invention is that it automatically determines the user’s driver, sets that driver appropriately, and then automatically chooses and applies a color pro?le built for that printer driver and the user selected media. The user only needs to select a printer and media to make the optimiZed for competitive media. color space for the image. Because of its location in the imaging chain after GDI, a printer driver has little or no pro?les is chosen for the selected printer-media combination, the chosen color pro?le is applied to the image 65 system operable. Another advantage is that the invention combines and automates the process of properly setting the printer driver and choosing and applying the output color pro?le. This “closes” the loop to guarantee that driver settings are correct for the selected pro?le. OtherWise, if a US 6,963,411 B1 3 4 color pro?le is applied for a driver setting different than the setting for Which the pro?le Was built, the results are unpredictable at best. These and other aspects, objects, features and advantages of the present invention Will be more clearly understood and appreciated from a revieW of the folloWing detailed descrip tion of the preferred embodiments and appended claims, and processing functions. A display 14 is electrically connected to the microprocessor-based unit 12 for displaying user related information associated With the softWare, e.g., by means of a graphical user interface. A keyboard 16 is also connected to the microprocessor based unit 12 for permitting a user to input information to the softWare. As an alternative to using the keyboard 16 for input, a pointing device 18 may by reference to the accompanying draWings. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS 10 A compact disk-read only memory (CD-ROM) 22 is connected to the microprocessor based unit 12 for receiving FIG. 1 is a perspective diagram of a computer system interfacing With a printer according to the invention. FIG. 2 is a How diagram of a technique for optimiZing a printer for driver settings and color pro?le according to the softWare programs and for providing a means of inputting softWare programs and other information to the micropro 15 cessor based unit 12 via optical storage on a compact disk 24. In implementing the present invention, the softWare Would typically include the presently disclosed computer program product for optimiZing a printing system. In addition, a ?oppy disk 26 (or other magnetic storage, such as magnetic tape) may also include the softWare program, and is inserted into the microprocessor-based unit 12 for inputting the softWare program. Still further, the microprocessor-based unit 12 may be programmed, as is Well knoWn in the art, for storing the softWare program invention. FIG. 3 is a How diagram shoWing more detail of one technique for retrieving driver speci?c data as generally shoWn in FIG. 2. DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION Because printers, printer driver softWare and color man agement techniques employing color pro?les are Well knoWn, the present description Will be directed in particular to elements forming part of, or cooperating more directly be used for moving a selector 20 on the display 14 and for selecting an item on Which the selector 20 overlays, as is Well knoWn in the art. 25 With, methods and computer programs in accordance With the present invention. In the folloWing description, a pre ferred embodiment of the present invention Will be imple internally on solid state electronic storage devices such as random access memory (RAM) or read only memory (ROM), or any other physical device or medium (such as a hard disk) employed to store a computer program. The microprocessor-based unit 12 may also have a netWork connection 27, such as a telephone line, to an eXternal mented as a softWare program. Those skilled in the art Will netWork, such as a local area netWork or the Internet readily recogniZe that the equivalent of such softWare may (including the World Wide Web), for either receiving the also be constructed in hardWare or ?rmWare. Because image softWare programs or updates to softWare programs previ manipulation techniques are Well knoWn, the present description Will be directed in particular to aspects of algorithms and systems forming part of, or cooperating more directly With, the present invention. Other aspects of such algorithms and systems, and hardWare and/or softWare for ously input to the microprocessor-based unit 12. 35 producing and otherWise processing the image signals involved thereWith, not speci?cally shoWn or described herein may be selected from such systems, algorithms, components and elements knoWn in the art. Given the description as set forth in the folloWing speci?cation, all softWare implementation thereof is conventional and Within the ordinary skill in such arts. Before describing the present invention in more detail, it facilitates understanding to note that the present invention is preferably utiliZed on any Well-knoWn computer system, such a personal computer, With any Well-knoWn printer 40 A conventional printer 28, such as an inkjet desktop printer, is connected to the microprocessor-based unit 12 for printing a hardcopy of the imaging output of the computer system 10 upon conventional printing media 29. As Will be described in more detail, the printer 28 is con?gured to print through a device driver With settings for particular media. In accordance With the invention, the display 14 is electrically connected to the microprocessor-based unit 12 for producing a graphical user interface having a page 14a shoWing a set of interactive buttons 14b corresponding to different printers 45 that could be used With the computer system 10 and a further set of interactive buttons 14c corresponding to different media that may be used With the supported printers. It is a particular feature of this invention that the user need only click on one of the printer buttons 14b and one of the media using Well-knoWn printer media. Consequently, the com puter system, printer and media Will not be discussed in buttons 14c to optimiZe the printing system for the printer detail herein. It is also instructive to note that the images are Images may also be displayed on the display 14 via a personal computer card (PC card) 30, such as, as it Was formerly knoWn, a PCMCIA card (based on the speci?ca tions of the Personal Computer Memory Card International and media in use. either directly input into the computer system (for eXample by a digital camera) or digitiZed before input into the computer system (for eXample by scanning an original, such 55 as a silver halide ?lm). While this invention ?nds particular Association) Which contains digitiZed images electronically utility in the case of desktop inkjet printers, it should be understood that it is applicable to the setup of printers embodied in the card 30. The PC card 30 is ultimately inserted into the microprocessor based unit 12 for permitting visual display of the image on the display 14. Images may also be input via the compact disk 24, the ?oppy disk 26, or generally. Referring to FIG. 1, there is illustrated a computer system 10 for implementing the present invention. Although the computer system 10 is shoWn for the purpose of illustrating the netWork connection 27. Any images stored, e.g., in the a preferred embodiment, the present invention is not limited to the computer system 10 shoWn, but may be used on any disk (not shoWn), or input through the netWork connection electronic processing system. The computer system 10 includes a microprocessor-based unit 12 for receiving and processing softWare programs and for performing other PC card 30, the ?oppy disk 26, the compact disk 24 or a hard 65 27, may have been obtained from a variety of sources, such as a digital camera (not shoWn) or a scanner (not shoWn). Images may contain “metadata” Which details the source of the image and conditions of the capture, Which facilitates the US 6,963,411 B1 5 6 selection of an appropriate input pro?le. Alternatively, a pro?le may be embedded in this image metadata such as proposed in the JPEG 2000 speci?cation. If none of this data is present, a “generic” input pro?le (such as one appropriate for sRGB color space) may be chosen. Referring to FIG. 2, the system How is shoWn for a technique for optimizing a color printer for driver settings and color pro?le according to the invention. For the system to function as shoWn, data regarding the supported printers Alternatively, these selections may be made through a and media types must be made available to the system. While this data may be provided in a number of Ways, in the standard dialog box. The system next determines (in step 120) Whether the selected printer-media con?guration is supported by the softWare; this determination is made by reference to the index ?le 130. If the requested con?guration is not supported, the program exits the optimiZation system and the printer returns to its default settings (i.e., printing is permitted, but through the more traditional printing that is 10 environment). The next stage is to process the image data through a uni?ed color management architecture betWeen an input pro?le and an output pro?le via a pro?le connection space. preferred embodiment the data regarding the supported color printers (including their printer drivers and settings), the supported media types and the color pro?les (both input and output) is either stored in an index ?le 130 or in another reliant upon the user’s manual interaction With the printer driver and color management tools presented in the user’s 15 First, the correct input color pro?le is retrieved (in step 125) ?le(s) accessible via, e.g., pointers in the index ?le 130. from the index ?le 130. The input color pro?le provides the (While one index ?le Will be described, it should be under stood that there could be separate input and output index ?les, one for example for input color pro?les and the other information necessary to convert input device values to color values expressed in the pro?le connection space, Which is a fully de?ned color space used for linking and/or concatenating a series of pro?les. UtiliZing the correct input color pro?le for the printer-media combination in use, the for output color pro?les and driver settings.) The index ?le 130 stores data for implementing optimiZed printing accord ing to the invention, including such information as: Identi?cation of the printer input image data is then transformed (in step 135) into the Identi?cation of the media Appropriate color pro?les for the printer-media combi 25 nation Appropriate driver settings for the printer-media combi nation The index ?le 130 may optionally store other information, as required or as needed for special applications, such as: output device values. Further details of such color manage ment architecture can be found in Digital Color Manage ment by E. J. Giorgianni and T. E. Madden, Addison Identi?cation of the operating system Wesley: Reading, Mass, 1998, particularly pages 419—436. Version of the printer driver The pro?les used in the preferred embodiment have been speci?ed under the auspices of the International Color Bit/byte length of driver settings in the printer code Rendering intent (e.g., type and amount of gamut com pression and color mapping) The index ?le 130 needs 35 Consortium (ICC). 40 image data. Generally, as shoWn in FIG. 2, the driver speci?c data, such as speci?c driver settings for the given media, is retrieved (in step 150) from, or by reference to, the index ?le 130; in the preferred embodiment, a separate ?le With driver settings is speci?ed in the index ?le 130, and the program is directed to that ?le for driver settings. Then the printer driver settings are modi?ed (in step 155) in accordance With the The next stage is to set up the printer for the transformed to be updated as neW printers, and printer drivers, or neW media are introduced and distributed to the trade. This can be done by generating and distributing Wholly neW index ?les or, for example, a Web-site can be maintained Which houses, or links to, all relevant neW pro?le connection space. The proper output color pro?le is retrieved (in step 140) from the index ?le 130 and the image data in the pro?le connection space is thereupon transformed (in step 145) into a media optimiZed printer color space. The output pro?le provides the information necessary to convert color values expressed in the pro?le connection space to ?le data necessary for proper operation of the system. In the latter case, after the ?les are doWnloaded over the netWork connection 27, the ?les are stored on the local retrieved settings and the printer is actuated (in step 160) to system 10 for future use. In one typical 45 print the transformed image data through the modi?ed driver implementation, the doWnloaded ?les update the exist settings. If the coding scheme, including the bit location and the bit length, for the coded driver settings embedded in the ing index ?le 130. As neW versions of printer media are distributed, neW color pro?les can also be released as printer code is Well knoWn, then setting the printer driver settings (in step 155) becomes a trivial matter. HoWever, if neW index ?les or doWnloaded via the netWork con this information is not available, then adjustment of the driver settings requires more ingenuity, as described beloW. Each printer typically contains a data structure With basic nection 27 from a media Web-site, Which Would ordi narily be maintained by the media manufacturer. In the beginning of the system How shoWn in FIG. 2, the image data is received (in step 100) from a variety of sources, such as the ?oppy disk 26, the memory card 30 or the netWork connection 27 shoWn in FIG. 1. As mentioned information about device initialiZation and environment in a Well-de?ned format that has been standardiZed across sub 55 before, the images may contain “metadata” Which details the source of the image and conditions of the capture, Which tion of the data structure has generic information germane to most printing applications that is accessible and Well understood by any developer. HoWever, the standard data structure also has an printer-speci?c portion storing settings for features that are unique for that particular printer. This portion is unstructured in the sense that a printer developer may store information anyWhere and in any format the developer chooses; consequently this information is not immediately understood and accessible by someone other facilitates the selection of an appropriate input pro?le, or an input pro?le may be embedded in this image metadata. The next stage in FIG. 2 involves acquiring and identifying (in step 115) the printer media and the printer driver version. In the preferred embodiment, the printer driver version is determined When the user examines the list of printers that are supported and then clicks on a single user interface, e.g., a button 14b, corresponding to the printer in use. Similarly, the media type is acquired by the system When the user clicks on a button 14c corresponding to the media in use. stantially all printers, regardless of manufacturer. This por 65 than that printer developer. The only requirement that must be adhered to is that the length of the printer-speci?c portion must be speci?ed in a particular ?eld in the generic portion US 6,963,411 B1 7 8 of the data structure. More speci?cally, the device driver data is stored in this printer-speci?c portion of the data structure, that is, in a portion of the data structure having and 155 running in parallel. Moreover, the input and output pro?les could ?rst be concatenated and applied to the pro?le connection space. Other arrangements may also be obvious to the skilled person. Consequently, the sequence of these steps as they appear in the claims should be understood to be interchangeable as set forth above. meaning only to a speci?c printer developer. Since the printer Will automatically access this portion of the printer speci?c data to set its driver settings, it is critical in this particular embodiment to determine What portion of the printer-speci?c data structure needs to change and to What The use of an index ?le 130 has been described in reference to a preferred embodiment for storing, or referring values it should be changed. Consequently, the folloWing methodology Was devised to locate and extract the printer 10 driver settings from the printer-speci?c portion: appropriate color pro?les for the printer-media combination, appropriate driver settings for the printer-media 1. Set up the printer in its standard, default mode. 2. Query and record the data structure. 3. Set up the printer via its oWn user interface in the preferred mode that is recommended (e.g., by the media manufacturer) for a particular media supported by this 15 invention. This set up Will change the data structure. cumbersome, this data regarding the printer-media combi 5. Use a conventional ?le compare utility to ascertain nation could be dispersed and stored, e.g., in a header associated With each of the color pro?les and/or driver settings ?les in lieu of being in an index ?le. Then each Which bits changed betWeen the tWo settings and What the respective values are for those bits With the different set tings. These settings represent the bits necessary to imple ment the optimum driver settings. 25 correct match is found for the printer and media in use. The invention has been described With reference to a catalog all the printer—media combinations that Will be stored in the index ?le 130 and thus supported by the system. Once these pre-calculated bit values for the driver settings have been stored in the index ?le 130, the technique shoWn in FIG. 3 is used to modify the printer data structure for the preferred embodiment. HoWever, it Will be appreciated that variations and modi?cations can be effected by a person of ordinary skill in the art Without departing from the scope of optimum driver settings. More speci?cally, the folloWing the invention. For example, the ?le 130 may contain other types of data, for instance information relating to the ren steps expand upon steps 150 and 155 shoWn in FIG. 2. The 35 dering intent selected for the printer. Such information might include particular color pro?les for particular intents, such as to adjust compression for the image data In that case, the rendering intent selected for the printer Would be identi?ed and the and the appropriate color pro?le for the rendering 40 intent Would be used to transform the image data. driver settings, from the index ?le 130 so as to be able to query and modify the data structure in the printer. Then the driver-speci?c data is retrieved (in step 205) from the printer data structure ?le and the current driver speci?c bits are header Will identify the speci?c printer-media combination appropriate for that color pro?le and/or driver settings. The aforementioned system Would then search through each color pro?le and/or driver settings ?le in turn until the data ?le for that speci?c printer—media combination. This procedure is then repeated as often as necessary in order to ?rst stage is to retrieve (in step 200) the driver speci?c data ?lename, Which includes the appropriate pre-calculated combination, identi?cation of the operating system, the version of the printer driver, the bit/byte length of driver settings in the printer code, and the rendering intent. Typically, as previously explained, the color pro?les and/or driver settings are stored in separate ?les accessible via the index ?le 130. Though perhaps someWhat more 4. Query and record the modi?ed data structure (With its different settings). 6. Store the bit locations and the desired bit values in a to, the aforementioned data for implementing optimiZed printing according to the invention. Such data includes identi?cation of the printer, identi?cation of the media, retrieved (in a step 210) from the data structure. The bit PARTS LIST locations in the printer data structure ?le are modi?ed (in a step 215) With the driver settings retrieved from the data ?le for the particular printer-media combination. The applica tion can then create a device context With this neW data 45 14a page 14b buttons 14c buttons structure. Next, referring to FIG. 2, the printer prints (in step 160) the transformed image data using the neW data struc ture to determine its mode of printing. Finally, although not shoWn in the Figures, it is preferable to return the driver settings to their original default values. 16 keyboard 18 pointing device 20 selector 22 CD-ROM 24 CD Except for the reception of image data in the beginning and the printing stage at the end, the order of the steps in FIG. 2 is merely illustrative of one Way of implementing the invention. In other Words, the system How shoWn in FIG. 2 represents one possible sequence of steps to achieve the objective of optimal printing, for example, a sequence in Which the steps 125, 135, 140 and 145 of manipulating the input and output color pro?les relative to a pro?le connec tion space are performed before the steps 150 and 155 of retrieving the driver speci?c data and modifying the driver settings. An alternative version With substantially the same effect Would have these steps rearranged With the driver speci?c data retrieved and used to modify the driver settings before doing the transformation into and out of pro?le connection space, that is, With steps 150 and 155 preceding steps 125 through 145. Another version could have the color pro?le steps 125 through 145 and the driver setting steps 150 10 computer system 12 microprocessor-based unit 14 display 26 ?oppydisk 55 27 netWork connection 28 printer 29 media 30 PC card What is claimed is: 1. A computer program product for automatically opti miZing any one of a plurality of printers for driver settings and color pro?le in order to optimally print an image, said computer program product comprising: a computer readable storage medium having a computer program stored thereon 65 for automatically performing the steps of: (a) initially, providing preexisting data Without user input, via an optimiZed printing system that correlates to a US 6,963,411 B1 10 plurality of printers, printer drivers, printer media and 10. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 Wherein steps (h) and color pro?les that are stored on an accessible storage are performed in parallel With steps medium; (b) receiving image data corresponding to the image; (t) and (g) (c) receiving from the accessible storage medium the preexisting data for the plurality of printers printer drivers, printer media and color pro?les; Wherein the step (h) of choosing an appropriate color pro?le comprises choosing an appropriate input and output color pro?le from the ?le data. (d) determining Which one of the printer drivers is to be 12. The computer program product as claimed in claim 11 Wherein the input and output color pro?le are concatenated used on the printer; 11. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 10 (e) identifying the printer media selected for the printer; (f) automatically, retrieving printer driver settings for the selected printer media from the preexisting data; (g) automatically, modifying settings of the printer driver 13. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 Wherein step (c) comprises receiving separate ?les for at 15 in use With the retrieved printer driver settings; together. (h) automatically, choosing an appropriate color pro?le from the preexisting data for the printer driver, the driver settings and the media selected for the printer; least one of the color pro?les and driver settings, and Wherein said separate ?les include a header portion that identi?es the printer and printer media appropriate for each said separate ?le. 14. The computer program product as claimed in claim 13 Wherein step (i) automatically, applying the color pro?le to the image data; and of retrieving driver settings comprises Wherein the ?le data for the plurality of printers, printer searching the headers of the separate ?les until a match is found for the selected printer media. 15. The computer program product as claimed in claim 13 drivers, printer media and color pro?les are stored in an Wherein step (h) of choosing an appropriate color pro?le index ?le, and Wherein step (c) comprises receiving data from the index ?le or from a data ?led indicated by the index ?le. 2. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 25 further comprising the step (k) of initiating a printing operation With the modi?ed driver settings. comprises searching the headers of the separate ?les until a match is found for the printer driver, the driver settings and the media selected for the printer. 16. A computer program product for interfacing With a user and optimiZing any one of a plurality of printers for driver settings and color pro?le in order to optimally print an image, said computer program product comprising: a com puter readable storage medium having a computer program stored thereon for performing the steps of: 3. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 Wherein step (c) further comprises: (c1) connecting With a network; (c2) receiving ?le data over the netWork regarding the (a) receiving image data corresponding to the image; printers, printer drivers, printer media and color pro Wherein step (c) further comprises: (b) automatically, accessing an index ?le With preexisting data corresponding to a plurality of printers, printer drivers, printer media and color pro?les; (c1) connecting With netWork; (c) interfacing With the user to determine Which one of the ?les. 4. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 (c2) updating the index ?le With data that is received over the netWork regarding the printers, printer drivers, printer media and color pro?les. 40 being used; 5. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 Where the step (d) of determining Which one of the printer drivers is to be used on the printer is initiated by a user 45 making a printer selection through a single user interface. 6. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 Where the step (e) of identifying the printer media selected data. 17. The computer program product as claimed in claim 16 by a user selection of a printer through a standard printer dialog box. intent. 9. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 Wherein steps (h) and (g) are performed before steps and (f) automatically, adjusting the settings of the driver for the selected printer media; (g) automatically, choosing an appropriate color pro?le (h) automatically, applying the color pro?le to the image Where the step (d) of determining a printer driver is initiated Wherein step (c) further includes receiving ?le data regard ing rendering intent and Wherein the computer program product further comprises the steps of: (k) identifying the rendering intent selected for the printer; and (l) selecting the appropriate color pro?le for the rendering (e) interfacing With the user to identify the printer media selected for the printer; from the index ?le for the printer driver, the driver settings and the media selected for the printer; and for the printer is initiated by a user making a printer media selection through a single user interface. 7. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 8. The computer program product as claimed in claim 1 printers is being used; (d) determining from the index ?le Which printer driver is further comprising the step 55 of initiating a printing opera tion. 18. The computer program product as claimed in claim 16 Wherein steps (g) and (h) are performed before step 19. The computer program product as claimed in claim 16 Wherein steps (g) and (h) are performed in parallel With step 20. The computer program product as claimed in claim 16 Wherein the printer is queried for presence of the selected printer media.