Printing has been one of the major techniques that have aided in the process of communication. Reproduction of a particular thought or image, through a template, in larger numbers, is the primary purpose and virtue of printing.

The history of printing may date back to as long as 200 A.D and block printing (that mainly prints motifs on cloth) took birth in Europe during the 14th and 15th centuries! However, today, the very first impression that 'printing' imprints on our minds is that of the sleek, portable machine in the offices or shopping counters.

It’s just takes minutes for this device to make several copies of, say, the official notice that you have drafted or the discount coupon that your business is offering for this month or week! Let's refer to this as the 'modern printing device'. Here's a tour of its journey up to the latest developments that it has undergone…

The birth of modern printing may be dated as 1938. This was the year when we saw the invention of ‘xerography’. This was chronologically followed by Inkjet printing in 1951, Laser Printing in 1969, and finally the Digital printing press in 1984. 

The Digital Printing press – 

The digital technique covers both the methods of inkjet and laser printing. The process is rather simple; the image or document that is to be printed is sent digitally (say, in a PDF format) to the printer and the print-outs are obtained (as many as you want)!

It’s pros…

  1. Printing plates are no longer needed. 

  2. Small and medium-scale businesses are hugely benefitted. Printing requests as less as 1 print can be made (unlike other techniques)! 

  3. They are largely used for posters and signage thus aiding outdoor advertisement.

Digital printing using laser printers or inkjet printers is mostly the printing job that we find in offices, but printing has several other 'long-tailed' developments with their own niche of functions and utilities. This article enlists 3 of them.

The job of 3D printing – 

This technique came into being during the 1980s. 3-Dimensional images often create a great impact on your audience. Come to toys or educational products and 3D pictures are of great use! Children as well their parents easily get attracted to the items!

Let’s take another instance. The interior designing industry. You get to advertise your designs and exhibit them vividly with the help of 3D pictures! There are a few software available such as the CAD that help you carve out your designs and then print it using 3D printing. 

Flexography – 

Can you recollect anything (heavily popular in the modern days) that uses continuous patterns? Yes, you guessed it right – they are your favorite wallpapers. Packaging labels too require continuous imprints of the company logo or the logo of the courier service. Flexography finds great use in these purposes. 

The technology uses flexible printing plates made up of photopolymer which are wrapped around cylinders that keep rotating in the press. This device has impressions of the content (that is to be printed) and the impressions are slightly ‘raised’. When the plates are rotated at high speeds the content gets transferred onto the print media. Flexography, therefore, finds the best use in packaging, labels, wallpapers, and gift-wraps.

The technique of LED UV printing – 

The most impressive virtue of LED UV printing is that it has a quick turnaround time! That is to say, the drying task is done almost instantaneously and the ink does not sink into the material as well. The technology uses UV lights to dry ink for printing purposes. This is also termed (the drying part) as ‘UV curing’.

The best part is, it saves a lot of energy as less power is used when compared to the traditional machines.

Moreover, the printing quality does not rest upon the texture of the printing material! Due to such versatility, LED UV printing finds large-scale usage in a lot of business purposes like brochures, catalogs, prospectus-making, etc.

Printing has come a long way since its evolution. Businesses - from small and micro ones to the large-scale production firms - have made optimal use of this invention to both run and expand their enterprise and provide customized solution to every section of the society