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History of Computer Printers
By Mary Bellis

Printers
In 1953, the first high-speed printer was developed by Remington-Rand for use on the Univac computer. 

In 1938, Chester Carlson invented a dry printing process called electrophotography commonly called a Xerox, the foundation technology for laser printers to come.

The original laser printer called EARS was developed at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center beginning in 1969 and completed in November, 1971. Xerox Engineer, Gary Starkweather adapted Xerox copier technology adding a laser beam to it to come up with the laser printer. According to Xerox, "The Xerox 9700 Electronic Printing System, the first xerographic laser printer product, was released in 1977. The 9700, a direct descendent from the original PARC "EARS" printer which pioneered in laser scanning optics, character generation electronics, and page-formatting software, was the first product on the market to be enabled by PARC research."

According to IBM, "the very first IBM 3800 was installed in the central accounting office at F. W. Woolworth’s North American data center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1976." The IBM 3800 Printing System was the industry’s first high-speed, laser printer. A laser printer that operated at speeds of more than 100 impressions-per-minute. It was the first printer to combine laser technology and electrophotography according to IBM.

In 1992, Hewlett-Packard released the popular LaserJet 4, the first 600 by 600 dots per inch resolution laser printer. 

In 1976, the inkjet printer was invented, but it took until 1988 for the inkjet to become a home consumer item with Hewlett-Parkard's release of the DeskJet inkjet printer, priced at a whopping $1000. 

Related Innovations
Computer Peripherals
Computers
Printing
Xerox Photocopiers, Xerography
Typewriter and Typing
Lasers

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