Thursday, September 20, 2007

printing double sided

Academics use a lot of paper. I try to only print things that I think I'll read more than once, or things that need to be discussed at length (such as papers for Herb's lab meetings).
I also go to great lengths to print things on both sides of the paper. If I have paper used only on one side I save it to print on the other side.

The printer in my office is an older inkjet that does fine for a few pages at a time. If I have to print out more than 10 pages though it's a bit tedious. So, I've been on a mission this week to find out how I can print from my laptop in my office to a big printer that can automatically print things double sided. We had one of these great networked printer/copiers at Mid-Atlantic Field Station and it was super easy to use. I figured there must be one of these for my department. There is one, but it appears to be under utilized, as it's only set up for photocopying.

I meant to email a few administrative people in the department and in a moment of great stupidity I emailed ALL of the biology graduate students. Oops. I felt pretty stupid when I realized my mistake but so far the only help I've gotten was from other grad students. U of Big City has a somewhat complicated and poorly publicized printing network that allows students to print a certain number of pages per semester at computer labs. I printed several pdfs for the review paper I have to write this semester. I'm going to spread the word to the other grad students and show them how to set it up on their computers. I'd also like to get Herb set up with an easy way to print double sided because I'd seen the stacks he prints out. I just hate to see unnecessarily wasted paper.

I think it would be really satisfying to work for a company as their resource efficiency expert and reduce the amount of paper and electricity they use by coming up with policies and procedures that would be more environmentally friendly and save them money. Changing practices around resource use for a big company can have a much larger impact than just doing these things at home. But, I digress. I'm a grad student so this is neither here nor there but I've learned how to print to an automatically duplexing network printer.

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