Monday, June 22, 2009

Everybody not HP: How to respond to the Touch Smart Printer.

As far as I can tell the TouchSmart is an inkjet + an iPhone. That is a great idea. It creates a single purpose device to search and print and it looks like a well designed box. I still can't see the business model for HP, but am willing to consider that those involved have a plan.

Anyway, the new customer experience will be in education.
What happens if every MFP has an "iPhone" built in? This should work for Ricoh, Cannon, the Color Cube and every other MFP in the market.

The teacher walks up to the MFP. Goes to wikipedia or any of the many wiki based content sites. Wikipedia is best because the structure is so well defined, although I know that PBWiki has open APIs. I assume most of them do. Anyway, I assume that somewhere out there is a wiki set up specifically for lesson plans, student writing, links to some great wiki organized content. She browses to the site, chooses what she needs the coming week, presses print and has copies for her class.

The secret sauce is, as usual, the typography. There are many open source solutions to get from xml to well formed PDF. With an iTunes business model, my bet is that the appropriate software will be written in a month or so. Then the teacher can not only select the content, but also select just the right style in which to print that content for her class.

If you look carefully at Google books, you can put the rest of the pieces together. By the way, this also works for student written books and probably for newspapers.

Once you can get to well designed PDFs, then you are ready for printernet publishing. And that means Print when you want, where you want, how you want it, with a minimal carbon footprint.

Go Print!

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