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The Evolution of Printing

The Evolution of Printing

A Brief History of Printers

Printing is one technology that many tend to overlook. In fact, it’s considered among those inventions that changed the course of modern civilization. The history of printers is actually long and colorful. Here’s a short story of how everything evolved.

The history of printing first started with the invention of the printing press by Johann Gutenburg in 1439. It basically changed the way how reading materials are produced. This machine remained largely unchanged until the 1800s, when the steam-powered press was created. It greatly reduced the manpower needed to operate the device, and also helped in terms of printing size, quality, and speed.

It’s not until the 20th century that modern printers started to emerge. Initially, most of them were designed for commercial purposes, as companies are the ones that needed printing technology the most. However, things changed once again with the emergence of the personal computer. It is only then that printer makers started to consider producing printers that can be used at home.


Changes in Modern Times

More and more individuals found home-use printers necessary in various pursuits. At the same time, enterprises required printing equipment that can keep up with their increasing demands in both quality and speed. As such, the technology of printers continuously evolved, propelling it to the state in which it’s known today.

Take for example the laser printer. Considered as one of the gold standards in the industry, it was first introduced in the 1980s. The first laser printers were not really known to be quick, as printers of its kind are today. And while these printers provided great quality for its time, these machines are prohibitively expensive. However, printer firms eventually found ways to improve their designs, and it shows on their latest products: quick, durable, and affordable.

Another great example would be the digital photo printer. It is a relatively new invention, with the first of its kind developed in 1991. It was at first designed to make posters and artistic prints, but wasn’t long until the technology was refined to print images of different sizes. The digital printers of today are remarkably sophisticated, capable of printing images with astounding quality.

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