Here’s a clever trick for if you ever need to print out a photo but find your inkjet cartridges low (or dried out): bust out your hair dryer. Paul Boutin of The New York Times writes,
If your printer’s ink cartridge runs dry near the end of an important print job, remove the cartridge and run a hair dryer on it for two to three minutes. Then place the cartridge back into the printer and try again while it is still warm.
“The heat from the hair dryer heats the thick ink, and helps it to flow through the tiny nozzles in the cartridge,” says Alex Cox, a software engineer in Seattle. “When the cartridge is almost dead, those nozzles are often nearly clogged with dried ink, so helping the ink to flow will let more ink out of the nozzles.” The hair dryer trick can squeeze a few more pages out of a cartridge after the printer declares it is empty.
Using a Mac, with a combination of web services & apps, we can breathe life back into [a cheap Bluetooth] printer, and turn it into a hashtag-based Instagram printer! In other words, any time there’s a new photo with a certain hashtag in Instagram, this will find it, download it, crop & resize it, then print it out. All completely automagically.
In the market for a new photo printer and not sure what to buy? Here’s a tip: shelling out a little more dough on the printer itself could potentially lead to massive savings over time.
The reason is ink, sometimes called “black gold” (or… “colored gold”?). The general rule of thumb in the printer industry is: the cheaper the printer, the more expensive it is to keep it filled with ink. Read more…
If you need to print some photos taken by someone else using print services at places like Walmart, be careful: if the photographs look “too professional” some places will require a written copyright release before allowing you to pick up the prints — even after you’ve paid for them. The Consumerist has a story of a woman named Jessica who ran into problems at Walmart after collecting photos from a couple pro photographer friends for a friend’s funeral:
See, Jessica’s friend was a professional photographer, as is her friend’s husband, who had e-mailed Jessica the photos to have printed. “So even their candid pictures appear professional,” she explains to Consumerist.
[...] In addition to those photos, Jessica says that Walmart wanted copyright info on a couple of shots that had been taken at a pro studio like Olan Mills back in the ’70s.
“There was no mark on them to indicate where they were taken, and my friend’s mom had sent me those,” writes Jessica. “She paid for them back in the day when they were taken, and she scanned them for me last week. How am I supposed to get written copyrights for every single picture?
Jessica had also checked a box affirming that she had permission to print the images while on Walmart’s website. Protecting copyright is a good thing, but having employees make decisions on whether photos are “too professional” after they’ve already been printed and paid for doesn’t seem like a very good system.
If Apple ever got into the photo printer business, this SWYP (“See What You Print”) printer might be similar to what they’d come up with. It’s a brilliant concept photo printer design by Artefact, the same design group that dreamed up the WVIL concept camera. Instead of having to send photos to the printer from a computer, users use a giant touchscreen interface that shows you exactly what’s going to pop out of the bottom. Come on SWYP, hurry up and exist!
Swedish Alex Breton spent 11 years and and $10 million developing the PrintBrush, a printer that lets you print onto paper by simply rubbing the handheld device across the surface. While traditional printers must move paper through a machine in order to accurately track the position of the page, the PrintBrush works more like an optical mouse, tracking the paper underneath with lasers. A camera-equipped PaintBrush is set to hit the market in early 2012, letting people everywhere print photos instantly on any flat surface!
Rather than using traditional instant film that develops on the spot, newer instant cameras are using a special ZINK technology that prints digital photos rather than exposing special paper. As more and more consumers rely solely on their mobile phones for shooting casual snapshots, perhaps the Sophie concept iPhone case is the next step in instant film’s evolution: it’s a case with a built-in printer that turns your iPhone into a Polaroid-style instant camera. What do you think of the idea?
Instaprint is a neat wall-mounted printer that fuses old-school Polaroid-style instant photos with social media (namely Instagr.am). Basically it’s a box you rent for events that contains a modified, Internet-connected Zink printer. It uses the Instagr.am API to constantly scan for a specific location or hashtag, and when new photos are found they’re automatically printed and pushed out the bottom. Read more…
If you think making prints at home with your photo printer saves you money over having the prints made through a service, you might be wrong. How-To Geek has a neat tutorial and XLS spreadsheet you can use to calculate the cheapest method depending on your printer expenses. Simply download the file, fill out the boxes according to the instructions, and you’ll learn how much you’re actually paying per-print with your home printer.
Canon announced today that five upcoming models of the Canon PIXMA printers will feature a “full HD movie print” feature that allows users to print individual frames from their HD movies. The big catch is that the HD movie files have to be .MOV file format created by certain Canon cameras only. The company has yet to release sample prints using the feature.
Other notable features on some of these models include their Wi-Fi capabilities, allowing the printers to access both the Internet and local networks. Also with the Wi-Fi models, Android OS, iPhone, iPad and iPod users can usethe Canon Easy-PhotoPrint app to print camera photos directly from their phones. The wireless models start at $80.
Most of the new printers will also include access to exclusive content on Canon’s CREATIVE PARK, which is a nifty creative site with project ideas, templates, and cards, as well as cool 3D paper craft projects.