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Say More with Less Ink

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Here’s how you can make your printer ink cartridge last longer.

The first time I heard of the ‘paperless office’, I was a pimpled kid in high school. High school is thankfully over, but there’s still no sign of a printer-free world. Criminally large quantities of paper are still being wasted, printers aren’t being junked in a hurry and printer cartridge refilling centres are a growing industry. Sure, we’re headed towards an era of pervasive e-documenting. In the meantime, here’s how you can control the ink-guzzling ways of your desktop printer.

Ink is still the most expensive component in the document printing process. The manufacturers like it like that. In the past year, many of us have had to think up innovative ways to reduce the cost of our food bill (like dieting). Use less ink, and you can do much the same with your printing costs, and eat more food. Most know the old trick to using less ink is to print text-heavy documents in ‘draft’ mode, which helps to extend the life of your toner. But we also know this method is a sorry compromise. A more ingenious way to save printer ink is to use Ecofont.

Ecofont is like the popular Arial, but with minute holes (that aren’t visible to the naked eye) punched in the letters. In case you’re wondering how Ecofont saves you money, the answers lie in the ‘holes’ that, obviously, don’t require ink to print. It’s an innovative solution that helps lessen, to some extent, a long-standing cost burden. Put differently, using Ecofont is like driving your printer on high-speed diesel.

But what if you have an extreme aversion to white dots of any kind and in all sizes, even if they happen to be virtually invisible? Fear not. You can continue to use ‘petrol’ fonts like Arial, Times News Roman, Courier, Helvetica and other popular ones. And still save some money, for food.

A unique study was undertaken to determine how much ink different popular typefaces consume. It’s worth checking out. While not the most scientific way to go about quantifying the cost of ink usage, it’s an interesting way to understand which font choice is most cost-effective. Hint: The majority of the very popular Harry Potter books are set in 12 pt Adobe Garamond.