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A printer is a device that allows you to print physical copies of digital content. It takes input from a computer or other devices, processes it and produces a tangible output in the form of text, images or graphics. 
Computers are electronic machines that perform various functions by processing data provided by users. They operate at high speeds and with great accuracy. By following instructions given to them, computers can efficiently process input and generate desired output.
The fundamental operations of a computer involve receiving input data, processing it based on instructions provided, storing the results and delivering the output to users.

Computer Components;

Hardware : Hardware refers to the physical parts that we can touch and interact with.
Input Device: Input devices like keyboards, mice and microphones allow us to provide data or commands to the computer.
Output devices : Output devices such as printers, speakers and monitors display or produce information for us to perceive.
Software ; Software refers to sets of instructions or tasks that computers execute.
 Application software:  Application software enables users to perform specific tasks like word processing or web browsing.
 System software : System software is designed to manage computer hardware and support application programs. It includes operating systems and language translators.

What is a Printer?

A printer is one example of an output device used for producing hard copies of digital content on paper or other materials.
A printer is a machine that takes text and graphics output from a computer and transfers that information onto paper. It can print any kind of information, such as text, numbers or images, depending on the type of printer. The quality and color of the printed material will vary based on the printer’s capabilities.

The History of Printers

In 1822, Charles Babbage introduced the first mechanical printer designed for use with a difference engine. While inkjet printers were invented in the 1950s, it wasn’t until the 1970s that they started producing high quality digital images. Various companies like Epson, Canon and Hewlett Packard played a significant role in developing these printers.
During the early 1970s, Gary Starkweather made modifications to one of Xerox’s model 7000 copiers and created the laser printer. The introduction of HP LaserJet printers by Hewlett Packard in 1984 made laser printers more accessible and widespread. In the same year, Apple introduced the Apple LaserWriter printer, which brought PostScript technology to the market. Additionally, Chuck Hull demonstrated the first 3D printers in 1984, while IBM invented the initial dot matrix printer back in 1957.

Key Features of Printers

Color; Colored printers have capabilities to print both color and black and white documents. Consequently, they tend to be more expensive than standard printers.
Resolution; Printer resolution is typically measured in dpi (dots per inch). High end printers often boast resolutions ranging from approximately 550 to 600 dpi.
Speed; When it comes to printing large volumes of content efficiently, having a fast printer is crucial. Therefore, speed is an important factor to consider when evaluating different printer options.

Type of Printers

Memory plays a crucial role in printers, as having an ample amount of memory leads to faster speeds and improved performance. Printers can be classified into two main types based on their printing methods and the quality of images they produce;
  1. Impact Printers; These printers work by making direct contact between the paper and an ink ribbon. They operate using mechanisms similar to those found in typewriters.
  1. Non Impact Printers; This category includes printers that do not require physical contact with the paper during printing.
One specific type of impact printer is the dot matrix printer.
There are types of impact printers such, as daisy wheel printers, dot matrix printers and line printers.
  1. Daisy Wheel Printers; Daisy wheel printing is a method of impact printing. It gets its name because the printing mechanism resembles a daisy flower. Typically it operates at a speed of 25 50 characters per second.
  1. Dot Matrix Printers; Dot matrix printers use print heads with 9 to 24 pins depending on the desired print quality. Printers with 24 pins offer output compared to those with 9 pins. These printers are usually affordable. Have speeds ranging from 100 to 550 characters per second.
  1. Line Printers; As the name suggests line printers can print a line at once also known as “line at a time” printing. Their speed ranges between 1,000 and 6,000 lines per minute.
 Line Printers
Line Printers

Non Impact Printers;

Non impact printers do not require contact, with an ink ribbon to print documents. They are generally easier to maintain compared to impact printers.

Non Impact Printer

Examples of impact printers include inkjet printers, laser printers, etc.
Inkjet printers, widely used in both domestic settings are incredibly popular, due to their advantages and minimal drawbacks.
 Line Printers
Line Printers

Advantages of Inkjet printers;

  •  They have the ability to produce photo realistic prints.
  • Inkjet printers have a design with a footprint making them space saving options.
  • These printers are known for being environmentally friendly.
  • Their versatility allows for printing tasks.
  • When it comes to picture and image quality inkjet printers deliver results.

Disadvantages of Inkjet Printers;

  •  The cost per page is higher compared to laser printers.
  •  They may be considered reliable, than printer types.
  • Print speed can be slower when compared to options.

Additional FAQ

1.What is the function and purpose of a printer?
Printers, their functions and various types; Choosing what suits your needs…
In English, the term “printer” refers to a device that can be utilized for printing text or images. The primary purpose of printers is to produce text or images on flat media such as paper in different sizes. Ultimately, everyone requires a printer for various purposes.
2.Why is having a printer important?
Without this tool, things could become more chaotic and less organized. Printers have evolved beyond being mere devices for printing. They can now be used for scanning, copying, producing high quality photos and much more.
3.How many different types of printers are there?
There are numerous types of printers available on the market today – ranging from compact and simple to complex and sophisticated models. However, there are six tried and tested types; inkjet printers, laser printers, solid ink printers, continuous ink printers, LED printers, dot matrix printers and A3 printers.
4.Who was responsible for inventing the printer?
Johannes Gutenberg | Printing Press Inventions Facts…
What is Johannes Gutenberg famous for? Johannes Gutenberg gained recognition for designing and constructing Europe’s first mechanized printing press.In 1455, he utilized this invention to produce the Gutenberg Bible, which stands as one of the earliest printed books in history using movable type.
5.Which printer is superior and why?
Inkjet printers are most suitable for smaller documents that contain a lot of images, such as photos or school projects.But, if you’re looking for a printer that can handle heavy volumes of text-based documents, a laser printer is the more efficient and economical choice.
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