|Front Page News
The Case Of The Broken PrinterAdvance Note: When your printer says, “I quit,” don’t believe it. There are remedies for “failing” printers (just like there are for “failing” computers). Here’s one:
After a few spurtings, coughings, and hic-cuppings, my color printer (XYZ r77) rolled over and played dead. It lay there with a slight grin as if to say, “Going, going…”
I flipped through the Manual of Resuscitations For Printers and found mention of a few Band-Aids. None worked. But a faint heartbeat in my printer was still there.
A warning message appeared on my computer screen that said, ‘parts in my printer had reached their normal life span and would now have to be replaced.’ UGH! What the printer (the manufacturer) is essentially telling me, is that I ‘have to buy a new printer.’
And my little pea brain is telling me, “I have to buy that same printer, because I have a barrel-full of color cartridges I just bought that fit exactly into my singular XYZ r77. What’ll I do with them…try to sell them on eBay?
Nice going XYZ… You’ve devised a marketing strategy that will marry a customer for life to your company of printers!
Enter Bruce, our ace technology expert here at Photosource International.
Bending over and stretching to pull plugs, flipping panels, access doors and buttons, Bruce scratched his head. He put my printer through a few routines with his stethoscope, to no avail. Nothing was happening.
Then he grinned back at the r77. He sat down and started pecking away at the computer keyboard.
That’s when I left to go back to easier jobs like dumping the cat litter box.
No word from Bruce.
About a half hour later, he emerged from the operating room.
“How’d you do it?”
“I found a hack for it.”
‘I went on to an Internet chat group for XYZ printers, and found a Russian guy who figured out the software code to counteract the XYZ trojan that was telling the printer to shut down and the customer to get new expired parts.”
“You mean the printer wasn’t really ready to call it quits?”
“You mean XYZ puts a built-in obsolescence code in their printers?”
And that’s not the end of the story. We also have another “dead” printer of the aforementioned brand name that had sputtered and died last year. We’d stashed it away covered up in a back room. Bruce takes it out, applies a similar hack code, and yes, there IS an after-life for printers. The Russian guy had a resurrection code for that one, too.
And, it gets even better. We had a boxful of color cartridges for that printer too, about $150 worth.
By the way, I’m printing this message to you on my ol’ XYZ r77.
Rohn Engh, veteran stock photographer and best-selling author of “Sell & ReSell Your Photos” and “sellphotos.com,” has helped scores of photographers launch their careers. For access to great information on making money from pictures you like to take, and to receive this free report: “8 Steps to Becoming a Published Photographer,” visit http://www.sellphotos.com