Today’s topic is about something so ingrained in our world, that most never think about it, yet we would all be lost without it. It’s used to help create art and to sign millionaire athletes’ contracts. Where would we be without ink? I wouldn’t be typing this blog, that’s for sure.
There are many debates amongst historians (Really, what else do they have to do?) about who first invented ink. Ink was the natural evolution after humans invented drawing and writing. We couldn’t continue carving on cave walls forever. Can you imagine relaxing on a tropical beach with an umbrella drink and reading a nice cave carving?
Some historians credit the invention of ink and paper to the Egyptians. This claim is because paper
has its origin in the word papyrus
. The papyrus plant is a wetland sage that was once abundant in the Nile Delta. Recorded history disputes those claims and lays all the credit to the Chinese.
Ink was originally created for marking the surfaces of hieroglyphics that were carved into stone. The first ink was a combination of soot and either animal glue or honey. This ink was invented by Tien-Lcheu, a noted Chinese philosopher of 2697 B.C. It became common throughout China by the year 1200 B.C. Other cultures soon adapted this invention and started adding colors derived from berries, plants, and other minerals. The colors of inks soon had ritualistic meanings attached to them.
As you have experienced, ink has moved a long way from its humble origins. Ink has evolved from the printing press of the industrial revolution to today’s remanufactured inkjet cartridges
. In a way you could say that ink has come almost full circle, with the newest biodegradable inks just a modern variation of what Tien-Lcheu first created!
No birds and bees here, no octopus either. The ink that we use today bears little resemblance to octopus ink, or melanin. In this century ink has become much more sophisticated and synthetic.
Printer ink contains pigments or dyes added to a base usually made from petroleum oil, de-ionized water and glycol, a thick syrupy substance that helps the ink to stick together and mix.Toner
, the powder used in laser printer and copier cartridges, is a manufacturer specific combination of special polymers and pigment, compounded into a fine powder, improving resolution.
The exact mixtures vary by the manufacturer, and are considered quite proprietary, however all ink cartridges
come from the basis of a 1930 Ink jet cartridge patent
, that we found very interesting.
You probably have that printer sitting on the desk top at home, but do you take full advantage of this tool?
Print your photos. We love our digital cameras, cell phone cameras are a beloved convenience, and DSLR cameras are becoming increasingly popular by the soccer moms and budding photographers. Now that we have our photos in digital format, we sometimes forget to print photos. It is so nice to hang photos in your home and office, very nice to give framed photos as gifts, and always good to keep the most cherished photos in an additional format. It is cheaper and easier to print at home than the days of film. Are you taking advantage of the photo printing ability of your printer? Make sure you change the settings to photo quality, purchase a pack of photo paper
and print your favorite photos.
Put your printer to work for you. There are so many great coupons online, we no longer need to purchase newspapers, save junk mail and spend hours clipping. Websites like RetailMeNot.com
are dedicated to providing the latest retail and grocery coupons that you can use in your local stores. Make sure you change the printer settings to a lower, ink saving quality, and print coupons to save you money now.
Keep the children occupied. Print your own coloring books
and puzzles, the preschoolers are sure to enjoy these on a rainy day. It may be Summer time, but you can keep the children learning and reviewing all year round with home work sheets.
How do you make the most out of your home printer?
Do you think of yourself as an ink
jetsetter? Do you consider learning how a printhead works the height of scientific inquiry? If so, the announcement of the 2010 InkJet Academy Conference (subtitled Theory of InkJet Technology) may be of interest. Featuring such Course Leaders as Mike Willis, the Managing Director of Pivotal Resources Ltd., the program is being held in the opening two days of February in Arizona. And for the low low price of $1095 per registrant, you could attend.
According to Imiconf.com, this one-time fee includes not just attendance at all sessions, but continental breakfasts, lunch, and coffee breaks for both days. Seemingly, the academy organizers are not advocates of dinner. The sessions, meanwhile, each last four hours and cover such topics as: ‘Advances in UV Curing Ink Technology’ and ‘Considerations for Page Arrays.’ Held at the Crown Plaza San Marcos Resort, attendants can at least be confident that the breakfasts will be good.
To register for the conference, and for the chance to see pictures of an Alpine lodge given the Andy Warhol treatment, visit the 2010 InkJet Academy website at: Imiconf.com.