Printers Aint a Box of Nails

By M. David Stone  |  Posted 2007-10-02 Print this article Print

Printers each offer their own constellation of features. And for any model, it's not hard to think of features you'd like to add.

Printers—both single function and multifunction printers—are sometimes accused of having reached generic status.
The truth is, theyre far from it.
A box of nails is generic. Theres not much chance of telling one brand from another or finding one with better features. And if you found one, how would you know? Printers each offer their own constellation of features. And for any model, its not hard to think of other features youd like to add. Broadly speaking, the AWOL features fall into three categories. Most are available on some printers, but should be far more common. Some are available on most printers, but inexplicably missing from a few. And some are good ideas that we havent seen in any real products yet. The following come from a little of each, but all of which, should see a greater representation in the next class of printers just hitting the drawing board. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest printer news, reviews and analysis.

M. David Stone is an award-winning freelance writer and computer industry consultant with special areas of expertise in imaging technologies (including printers, monitors, large-screen displays, projectors, scanners, and digital cameras), storage (both magnetic and optical), and word processing. His 25 years of experience in writing about science and technology includes a nearly 20-year concentration on PC hardware and software. He also has a proven track record of making technical issues easy for non-technical readers to understand, while holding the interest of more knowledgeable readers. Writing credits include eight computer-related books, major contributions to four others, and more than 2,000 articles in national and worldwide computer and general interest publications. His two most recent books are The Underground Guide to Color Printers (Addison-Wesley, 1996) and Troubleshooting Your PC, (Microsoft Press, 2000, with co-author Alfred Poor).

Much of David's current writing is for PC Magazine, where he has been a frequent contributor since 1983 and a contributing editor since 1987. His work includes feature articles, special projects, reviews, and both hardware and software solutions for PC Magazine's Solutions columns. He also contributes to other magazines, including Wired. As Computers Editor at Science Digest from 1984 until the magazine stopped publication, he wrote both a monthly column and additional articles. His newspaper column on computers appeared in the Newark Star Ledger from 1995 through 1997.

Non-computer-related work includes the Project Data Book for NASA's Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (written for GE's Astro-Space Division), and magazine articles and AV productions on subjects ranging from cosmology to ape language experiments. David also develops and writes testing scripts for leading computer magazines, including PC Magazine's PC Labs. His scripts have covered a wide range of subjects, including computers, scanners, printers, modems, word processors, fax modems, and communications software. He lives just outside of New York City, and considers himself a New Yorker at heart.


Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel