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Ink Jet Printers

Ink jet printers offer low cost printing alternatives to laser printers, while retaining some of the print quality of laser printers. They operate silently, are lightweight, and make good home printers.

In ink jet printing, liquid ink is pumped into a set of chambers, each containing a heating element. There the ink is heated until it vaporizes. The vaporous ink is then forced through tiny nozzles, squirting dots on the paper. As each line of text is written, the paper advances slightly to accept another line.



Birkerts, Sven. The Gutenberg Elegies. Boston: Faber and Faber, 1994.

Epstein, Sam, and Beryl Epstein. The First Book of Printing. New York: Franklin Watts, Inc., 1975.

Gaskell, Philip. A New Introduction to Bibliography. Oxford, 1972.

McLuhan, Marshall. Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1965.

Rizzo, John, and K. Daniel Clark. How Macs Work. Emeryville: Ziff-Davis Press, 1993.

Randall Frost


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—A shallow tray divided into compartments to hold fonts of different types. The case is usually arranged in a set of two, the upper case for capital letters and the lower case for small letters.

Desktop publishing

—The writing, assembling, design, and printing of publications using microcomputers. Depending upon the printing quality desired, the electronic pages may either be printed on a desktop printer, or sent to a printing bureau where the electronic document is loaded onto a highend computer.


—A complete set of type in a particular style and size.


—A metal tray filled with lines of set type.

Galley proof

—A copy of the lines of type in a galley made before the material has been set up in pages. The galley proof is usually printed as a single column of type with wide margins for marking corrections.

Intaglio printing

—The process of printing in which the design or text is engraved into the surface of a plate so that when the ink is wiped off, ink remains in the grooves and is transferred to paper in printing. Photogravure is a type of intaglio printing.


—Filling out a line of type with space bars to a specified length.


—Typecasting machine which casts a whole line of type at once.


—Typecasting machine which casts single letters.

Planographic printing

—The process of printing from a flat surface, also known as surface printing. Lithography and photolithography are two examples of planographic printing.

Relief printing

—The process of printing from letters or type in which the printing ink is transferred to the printed surface from areas that are higher than the rest of the block. Letterpress printing is an example of relief printing.

Additional topics

Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Positive Number to Propaganda - World War IiPrinting - History Of Printing, The Gutenberg Revolution, Conventional Printing Methods, Letterpress, Large Presses, Printing Pictures - Photogravure, Dot-matrix printers