Google has announced updates to its Cloud Print service that will make it easier to get content from device to device. Originally, the service was to allow people to print physical copies of files from smartphones and Chromebooks. The new update allows users a couple new print options.
It's tough to be too enthusiastic about HP's plan to merge its printer and computing groups into a single unit. Former EVP of the PSG group Todd Bradley will lead the freshly-minted Printing and Personal Systems Group, as HP attempts to cut costs and "drive innovation" of its product range. Yet HP's track record in creating exciting, distinctive devices is hardly glowing, and there are some serious pitfalls ahead that could easily derail the new strategy.
HP announced today that it was reorganizing to improve performance and drive profits across its entire portfolio. The reorganization is taking its Imaging and Printing Group along with the Personal Systems Group and merging them into a new group called Printing and Personal Systems Group. With the merging of the two groups, the former leader of the Imaging and Printing Group, Vyomesh Joshi, is retiring.
3D printing has been tipped as the next frontier of piracy, but it could also be the next frontier of high-speed nanoscale construction if research at the Vienna University of Technology pans out. A team there has produced a 285 micrometer long 3D printed F1 car model using a system called "two-photo lithography", hardening liquid resin using a precisely focused laser. The scale, although impressive, isn't the real advance however, it's the speed at which the model was created: just four minutes, orders of magnitude faster than previous printers.
If 3D printing advances as fast as 2D printing advanced, we'll be working with our own Replicators from Star Trek by the year 2080. It took just 40 years for the original printing press to turn over from the single Gutenberg press to get to a mass production scale across Europe, and much, much less time for computers to advance from massive machines to teeny-tiny chips. With advances like home-bound do it yourself printers and the fact that pirate sites across the web are now sharing model files so that you might print your own objects at home without effort, we've not got much time at all before advances are made to the tune of Earl Gray, Hot.
The next copyright controversies will be over physical replicas of digitally distributed objects, it's suggested, using 3D printers and CNC machines to bypass stores and instead print off your own clothes, gadgets and other items. Although currently far-fetched, the "data objects that are able (and feasible) to become physical" - dubbed Physibles by The Pirate Bay - are tipped to be the next hot online commodity, as users share files and design-owners attempt to limit access.
If you have a home or office full of iOS devices like the iPad or iPhone that receive hoards of emails all day and need to print sans wires you a printer you already have, it can be done. A company called Lantronic has unveiled a new device for iOS gadgets called the xPrintServer. The device is a little box that is roughly the size of an iPhone.
Certain HP printers could be remotely persuaded to collect confidential information or even cause physical damage, researchers have demonstrated, with a covert reprograming hack causing them to overheat and present a possible fire hazard. The government and industry funded research team at Columbia University were able to tweak an official HP management tool to include malicious programming in with a regular print job, MSNBC reports, allowing them to coax some LaserJet printers into overheating their fuser.
Update: HP has issued us with a statement; you can find it after the cut.
The Little Printer is a strange item that seems to be aimed a the person who both likes and loathes digital media. This Little Printer allows you to enter your subscriptions for social networking sites and other places and then each morning it will print that content out for you. Granted that isn’t green, but if you want a printed page to take with you this might be the ticket.
HP is still quietly shopping webOS around among with other Palm assets, according to sources, but insisting that potential buyers of the platform agree to license it back for use in future HP printers. Intel has just entered discussions with HP, a source close to the negotiations spilled to VentureBeat, while Qualcomm - despite sidestepping any suggestions of interest in webOS - is also said to be still in the running.