February 7, 2007

Printing Smarter


I received an email the other day from the MD of a large technology company. After I had finished reading it I noticed a small capitalised sentence at the end of the email that said 'PLEASE CONSIDER OUR ENVIRONMENT BEFORE PRINTING'. It's an important point, and one I'm sure that gets overlooked too frequently. How many times have you hit 'print' unnecessarily?

Much energy is focused on recycling paper but little is focused on reducing its usage. Image the impact on our environment if everybody who had a computer printed one less document each day. If you are running a company the maths are simple. Save on paper, save on toner and ink replacements, save on the cost of storing and removing the paper.

One company in the US has come up with a novel solution for helping you save paper when you print. GreenPrint is a small piece of software that sits between your application and print driver and helps you save paper. GreenPrint highlights and removes unwanted pages before you press print but it also helps you work out what you actually want to print by providing you with a print overview - a mode that helps you easily decide what stays and what goes.

GreenPrint is also focused on getting you out of the habit of printing altogether, that's why it comes bundled with a PDF creator. The idea - if you can save the document in a digital form then you won't need to print at all. Lastly, to make you feel warm and fuzzy GreenPrint lets you track the number and cost of the pages you save.

GreenPrint is available as a free 14 day trial. If you are happy with the software (and based on my testing you should be) you can buy it for around $30. At the moment GreenPrint is only compatible with Windows a Mac client is nearly complete.