It seems like my printer always breaks when I have an important deadline. Next time, I’m going to think positively and remember that by not being able to print, I’m one step closer to saving Mama Earth. As necessary as printers are for certain tasks, I think it’s time that we take an incredible step in the right direction and go Office Space crazy on all of our printers. OK, so maybe that’s not as feasible for the business world, but it’s a fun thought.
One thing that we can do is actively attempt to make our offices as digital as possible by incorporating PDFs and e-mails instead of printing reports and mailing them. The USPS probably hates me for that statement, but they’ll get over it. Thomas Counsell from the University of Cambridge’s Institute for Manufacturing recently speculated that paper consumption is responsible for 2% of greenhouse gases. Part of Counsell’s research focuses on methods to remove ink from printed paper allowing it to be re-used again.
There are a couple guys I came across on the web that are helping with this research, even if they don’t know it. Matt Robinson and Tom Wrigglesworth tested the ink-usage of different style fonts by hand drawing them with ball-point pens.
The verdict is in…Garamond is the most efficient font in ink-usage. So maybe Microsoft should take the hint and change the standard from Times New Roman and Calibri to Garamond. They probably won’t since they run the technology world, but maybe Mama Earth will give them hell and they’ll comply.
If you really want to take it to the next level, a White Goat should be in your future. I’m not talking about the grass-eating, “baaaa” goat, but rather the office paper eating, toilet paper making White Goat. Sounds strange right? Well check out this product from Oriental, Co. Ltd. All you do is put 40 pieces of office paper in one end, and a roll of toilet paper comes out the other in 30 minutes. Thats a little quicker than the average digestive system, but you’ll have some toilet paper for when your digestive system catches up. They claim that the White Goat can save 60 cedar trees annually.
So to recap:
Office Space = Good
Printers = Bad
Innovative paper re-use research = Good
Impact font = Bad
White Goat = Good
Wiping your butt with that report your boss pestered you about all week = I’ll let you decide