TAPS Workflow


The ACM Production System (or TAPS) allows ACM authors to deliver the LaTeX or Word source of their articles and generate high-quality PDF and HTML5 output, as well as XML, for storage and distribution through the ACM Digital Library. TAPS will perform syntax checking and report errors to the author if they are encountered during the validation of the source delivered to it, and generate PDF and HTML5 versions from the source and deliver those to the author for review. A production editor or the conference organizer may also review the generated articles and may provide feedback to the author as well.

Important to Note: Communication between the author and TAPS is done via e-mail; please make sure that e-mails from "tapsadmin@aptaracorp.awsapps.com" are delivered to your inbox so that you don't miss any communication from TAPS. You will receive an e-mail from TAPS that will include a link for you to use to access TAPS, upload your source file(s) for production processing and, later, to review the TAPS generated PDF and HTML proofs.

The TAPS workflow can be summed up in a few steps. These steps will be explained in greater detail below.

  1. Prepare source material - the Word or LaTeX source document(s), and any supplementary material you wish to have distributed alongside your article in the Digital Library.
  2. Organize your article source material into a ZIP file, and upload that ZIP file to TAPS.
  3. Upload your supplementary materials as per organizer instructions.
  4. If the source was successfully processed, review the generated PDF and HTML5 documents. If validation errors occur, revise the source and resubmit to TAPS.
  5. Approve your article in TAPS for publication when all errors are resolved.


Estimating the Page Count

Sponsored events and journal publications often use page counts to segregate articles into several classes - "long papers," "short papers," "abstracts" and the like. The simplified input format of Word documents may make it difficult to determine a correspondence between "word count" and the "page count" of a well-formatted PDF document.

The following table illustrates - in general terms - a correspondence between word count and page count. These estimations do not include figures, tables, or other elements typically found in an article, and this was exclusive of references or appendices.

Word Count Page Count (approximate)
1,300 words 2 pages of formatted, two-column output.
2,000 words 3 pages of formatted, two-column output.
3,100 words 4 pages of formatted, two-column output.
4,000 words 5 pages of formatted, two-column output.
7,000 words 8 pages of formatted, two-column output.
8,000 words 9 pages of formatted, two-column output.
10,000 words 11 pages of formatted, two-column output.


Preparing Your Material

The material you deliver to TAPS needs to be prepared according to a set of rules in order for the system to figure out which files should be processed. The author will create a ZIP file containing at least one, and perhaps all three of these folders:

  • a folder named "source" containing the source of your article (required):
    • a Word document
    • one or more LaTeX files
    • figures and images to be included in the LaTeX files
  • a folder named "pdf" containing a PDF of your article (this is optional)
Important to Note: Filenames should ONLY include upper- and lower-case letters, numbers, the dash "-" and underbar "_" characters. (The period between the filename and the file extension - "figure7.png" is fine.)

Also important to Note: TAPS will add the author and affiliation and e-mail information from the rights form you completed to the HTML5 version of your article, so it is important for the information entered on the rights form to be what you want published in your article.

If you are using LaTeX to prepare your article, you should keep the following in mind:

  • Only one file should have a \documentclass{} command in it.
  • If you are including any LaTeX packages in your article, they must be part of the list of accepted packages.
  • You need not include any of the ACM article class files (acmart.cls, etc.)
  • Figures and images to be included can be in the "source" folder, or in a folder within the "source" folder, as long as the paths to those resources in the LaTeX files are correct.
  • You need to include the rights commands sent to you when you completed your rights form to the source of your article before delivering it to TAPS.

For more information on using LaTeX to prepare your article, please see Preparing Your Article with LaTeX.

If you are using Microsoft Word to prepare your article, you should keep the following in mind:

  • You need to have started with the "submission" template, attached the "master" template to it, and successfully tagged and linked all citations, references, and links to tables and figures.
  • You must successfully validate your document in Word before submitting to TAPS.
  • You do NOT need to include any rights information in the Word source; TAPS will transfer that information from the rights form you completed to the HTML5 and PDF versions of the article that it generates.

For more information on using Microsoft Word to prepare your article, please see Preparing Your Article with Microsoft Word.

When you have this folder (or folders) prepared, you should select them and create a ZIP file from them. If you are using the Unix "zip" program, this example command should create a suitable ZIP file:

zip -r file.zip ./source ./pdf

The ZIP file MUST be named correctly, or it will not be processed by TAPS. It is very important to name the ZIP file exactly as you are told. The format of the name will be "eventname"-"submissionID".zip - an example would be "cvmp19-12.zip" for article 12 of the "cvmp19" conference.

These instructions are available from the link sent to you from TAPS, including the specific event name and submission ID values you must use in naming the ZIP file.

Delivering Your Material

When you have prepared and named your ZIP file, you can deliver it to TAPS. From the link sent to you from TAPS, you will find two choices for delivering your ZIP file:

  • if the ZIP file is less than 10MB in size, use the file uploader on that page
  • if the ZIP file is 10MB or greater in size, use the FTP link on that page

You will receive confirmation that your file has been delivered by e-mail and, if you were able to use the file uploader, in the TAPS interface.

Processing your Material

When your ZIP file is delivered to TAPS, the system will attempt to build the PDF and HTML5 versions of your article from the Word or LaTeX source.

If / when the source is successfully processed, you will receive an e-mail from TAPS with the generated PDF document as an attachment, and with a link to the generated HTML5 document, for your review. If you find something at this point that needs to be corrected, you have the option to reject and resubmit the source. If the PDF and HTML5 versions are acceptable to you, the next step is to approve your article in TAPS.

If the source is not successfully processed - if, in the words of TAPS, "a validation error has occurred" - you will need to read the error message(s), revise your source to resolve the issue(s), and resubmit the source to TAPS.

If you need to resubmit your ZIP file to TAPS, you will first need to "reject" the material that's been submitted previously and then you will be able to resubmit the new ZIP file.

When TAPS has successfully generated PDF and HTML5 versions of your article, you may approve your article in TAPS.

Common Validation Errors

When an article has a "validation error," it is likely to be one (or more) of these issues.

  • missing rights command(s) - one or more of the LaTeX commands given to you when you completed the rights form are not included in the LaTeX source file. You will need to add the missing commands.
  • invalid LaTeX packages - you are using a LaTeX package that is not on the list of approved packages. You will need to remove that package and implement its function in another way.
  • missing figures / incorrect paths to figures - one or more figures are missing from the material delivered to TAPS, and/or the paths in the LaTeX source file do not point to the figures.
  • if your event is sponsored by SIGGRAPH or SIGPLAN and you did not choose the "author year" citation and reference style, this will be reported as an error.
  • incorrect template used - You need to use the proper Word templates. The "interim" template is not compatible with TAPS.
  • document not validated - You must run the "Manuscript Validation" macro on your Word document, and have it successfully complete, before delivering the Word document to TAPS.

Technical Support

The production vendor has 24/7 technical support available via e-mail to "tapssupport@aptaracorp.com". 

[published March 2022; instructions written by Stephen Spencer, Univ. of Washington, Seattle Washington]

TAPS Author Workflow

In the final step in the new ACM production workflow, authors will submit their validated paper to ACM's publishing system (TAPS). The publishing system produces and distributes the traditional PDF output as well as ACM's new responsive HTML5 design.