Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Printer Hell 

I hate printers.

Let me say that again, so everyone is clear:

I hate printers!!!!!!!

I've had six computer printers, and exactly one of those six actually worked. And that one often jammed.

The latest Expensive Paperweight is better known as the HP Officejet 6210xi, which I brought home just today. I took it out of the box, and tried to carefully follow the instructions, which practically warned the thing would spontaneously explode unless each step was carried out with clockwork precision.

So far so good, then I go to install the software.

Three hours later.....

Well, you can imagine. The bottom line is HP sent a screwed up disc, the software download from their site led to new bugs, and I'm going to guard the printer receipt more carefully than the Secret Service guards a US Senator.

HP has a 24-hour help line, but I think the call will go better after I've had a good night's sleep. I better get some good answers or a new free disc. There's no way I'm forking over another ten bucks to cover shipping on a new CD, I'll take the printer back to Costco before that happens.

What the holy hell is it about printers and copiers? I'm not the only one who's cursed with the damn things. Every company or organization I've ever worked for has had their copier/printer die on them, with no one having a clue as to how to fix it. If it isn't jammed paper, leaking toner, or the futile quest for a compatible printer cartridge, it's a printer queue that spontaneously begins printing out a week and a half of the office's unprinted documents for no particular reason. Can someone mechanically and/or computer literate explain to me why it's so hard to engineer a printer that actually does its job without the constant need for attention, as opposed to being such a piece of crap?

Can I just plug a USB port into an old-fashioned printing press and be done with it?

If you can, find an old HP laserjet 4. You can practically drop it into a 12 ft. pool, and allow it to sink all the way to the bottom. When you decide to get it back out of the pool, just let it dry out in the sun for a few hours, get a new printer cartrage for it, plug it back in, and it would be just fine...

There is a reason that HP discontinued this model, as they realized that they made a model that was too good .

I got one from my current (but not future, thank God)employer, and it has worked like a champ all year. It was free because they were upgrading the computers to some new standard, and the new printers came free in the package deal. The computer tech said that she "could not kill" the printer that I have, and she even tried to pour water into it to break the thing.

But then hey, it just might be our printer???
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