3D in colour

Print Hi-Tech: 3D in colour

Printing, digital, and marketing convergence

For July and August, I chose the most colourful news and case studies involving printing and digital technologies.

Today: the wonderful world of pop-up books; the magic of water colour printing; new ways to 3D print colourful objects; beautiful cakes created with 3D printing.

The Pop-Up World: Books in 3D

Do you like pop-up books or do you think they are primitive and boring? Just have a look at this list of the best pop-up books ever made. You’ll be amazed how inspiring they can be. Discover a fascinating paper world in extra 3D dimension!

These wonderful collectables are created by talented ‘paper engineers.’ It appears that the pop-up culture has its own biggest names, and Robert Sabuda, the creator of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, the Beauty and the Beast and more, is definitely among them.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: A Commemorative Pop-up by Robert Sabuda celebrates the 100th anniversary of Frank Baum’s edition. The book contains a short version of the original story combined with the beautiful artwork in the style of W.W. Denslow, holographic foil on every spread, and a number of mini pop-ups.

Water Printing: The magic of colours

3D printing is rapidly developing over the past few years, but to colour complex 3D patterns both accurately and efficiently is still a problem.

Water transfer printing (or hydrographics) has been around for a decade or even more. While being able to transfer inks on a thin film to the surface of a 3D object, it suffers from the inability to accurately register colour texture to complex geometries.

Now, researchers came to offer computational hydrographic printing: a standard hydrographic technology plus 3D vision system to create a precise texture map. According to them, the cost-effective method inherits the versatility of traditional hydrographic printing, while also enabling precise alignment of surface textures making them look somewhat vivid and real. The results are amazing!

Colours for 3D Printing: A way to go?

Getting colour into 3D printing is not easy. But this year we witnessed a number of announcements including DIY segment that could make full-coloured 3D objects a closer reality.

Stratasys announced the enterprise-grade J750 model based on proprietary Polyjet technology. The printer which is said to print with photorealistic colour accuracy can handle materials of various hardness and even transparencies.

stratasys j750 3D colour

Moreover, Stratasys and Adobe partnered to offer a solution to produce realistic colour 3D models. Stratasys Creative Colours is powered by Adobe’s 3-D colour print engine. The printing platform is called Connex3 (the same PolyJet technology) and allows three photopolymer based resins to be printed at once.

Aad van der Geest, an independent product designer, created the ‘Colorpod’, an add-on for Ultimaker to print in full colour, using the same powder and technology found in expensive binder jetting machines.

Jason Powell, a user from Instructables, came up with a DIY path to bring full-color 3D printing to Rostock Max, the popular delta 3D printer priced only $1,000. While companies like Stratasys are aiming the industrial segment of full-colour printing, Powell shows that the same result an be achieved with open source and shared ideas.

Bonus: Made in Ukraine

The Ukrainian chef Dinara Kasko from Kharkov uses geometry and biomimicry to create the most colourful and appetising desserts. “I want to make something interesting and fresh, experimenting with new creative ideas,” she says.

In her interview to “So good…” magazine, she explains that she is trying to connect architecture, design, and patisserie: “A beautiful cake, as well as a beautiful building, needs preliminary design”.

First, 3D master models are designed, printed and post-processed. After that, they cast the silicone mould. Currently, Dinara Kasko starts to work with large silicone moulds producers: Silikomart decided to put some of her models into mass production. The Bubbles mould (see the photo) will be available for sale in September.

Print Hi-Tech: 3D colours

#IPD15 PrintNOW

International Print Day 2015

Let’s make print trend the planet: #IPD15

On October 14, 2015, the global on-line print community declared its love for print in 24 hours of open global knowledge sharing through social media using the hashtag #IPD15.

Additionally, the official event hashtag #PrintNOW was designated for all print professionals to share examples of print on social media including Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, YouTube.

Final stats:

  • 6PM ET 10/13/15 – 8PM ET 10/14/15
  • 793 Tweets
  • delivered to 27.062.860 timelines
  • with 1,362 contributors

I made two lists of popular and interesting tweets: my favourite ones, which I consider the most relevant, and top tweets according to topsy.com this year again.

My favourite tweets #IPD15

1. @FPMailingLandC
10 Creative DirectMail Examples: ow.ly/ThMmu

2. 3DPrintBoard
3DPrinting Will Play a Central Role in the 2016 Met Gala: bit.ly/1hNAfPZ

3DPrinting in the 2016 Met Gala

3. @IntPrintDay
Digital books stagnant while printed books are lovely and shareable. Here’s why: http://bit.ly/1M6B8eJ

4. @MASienicki
Did You Know…Fascinating Printing Facts for #IPD15: ow.ly/TnT9G 

Did you know… Johannes Gutenberg died a poor man? He was sued by his wealthy business partners in 1455 and lost the lawsuit, which resulted in the iconic printer being forced to give up his printing business and, ultimately, into financial ruin, before his death in 1468.

5. @magscanada
5 key themes in this year’s review of magazine media innovations.

magazine media innovations

6. @MACtac_Graphics
Trend: Customizing our world through wide format printing lnkd.in/dyXsVZ4 

Customizing our world through wide format printing


7. @Foilco 
Foil print, Overprint and Emboss! We love print. Happy International Print Day!

Happy International Print Day!


8. @MarketingUK
Disney brings characters to life in AR colouring book: bit.ly/1LsnRRJ

Disney brings characters to life


9. @DeadTreeEdition
A Kick in the Listicles: 7 Reasons Digital Media Are Inferior to Print http://bit.ly/1Mqv2Gq

10. @Go2RIS
Some more Printing humor!

Some more Printing humor!

And even more popular #IPD15 tweets according to topsy.com

Which do people prefer to read: print or digital communications? chooseprint.org/FAQ.html

US Forest Area & Net Volume of Trees has grown.

US Forest Area & Net Volume of Trees has grown.

Print is MEMORABLE. Pass it on.


Print ads can be just as interactive as digital: bit.ly/5printa2

Why print is essential to your marketing strategy: bit.ly/L7bnCD

Some great print and folding for the origami posters in the Restaurant tonight. Perfect for @IntPrintDay

Some great print and folding for the origami posters in the Restaurant tonight. Perfect for @IntPrintDay

All Printerverse panels and events from GraphExpo up on YouTube http://ow.ly/SAeCf. 21 sessions to feed your brain!

* * *

If you are interested in print and printing technologies, here is the next date for you to mark.

October 19, 2016: 24 hours of open global knowledge sharing through social media! #IPD16

3D Print Conference in Kyiv

3D Print Conference in Kyiv

Highlights from the event

After waiting for quite some time for an interesting industry event related to digital technologies and printing, I finally managed to do it — I’ve attended the 3D Print Conference in Kyiv, held on September, 10th.

Needless to say, it was exciting. Everyone who had a chance to learn more about advanced technologies and innovations knows how inspiring they can be.

The event hosted several zones: an exhibition where technology dealers and service providers presented hardware, software, and printed samples; workshops for everyone interested in hands-on aspects of 3D printing and 3D scanning; a conference hall for presentations; a 3D+Robo Kids zone where the youngest attendees studied the basics of 3D modeling and robo design.

Conference speakers unveiled their personal business stories, experience, and knowledge in order to teach, motivate and engage their audience. The interest was strongly backed by the 4x annual growth of the 3D print market in Ukraine, according to Mares Shamzhi, the conference manager.

The presentation program included 12 talks divided into 3 sessions. Here are few of the things said that, to my opinion, were really inspiring and motivating:

* * *

Darya Kireeva from Materialise, a Belgium-based company that has been playing a large role in additive manufacturing for the past 25 years, was the first to describe the current state and emerging trends in 3D printing technologies.

From selective laser sintering (SLS), its widest range of materials covering wood and titan, to stereolithography (SLA) offering largest models and supporting transparent resin, to fused deposition modeling (FDM), the most well-known and popular 3D printing method, every technology has its certain limitations and strong points taken into account when you choose a 3D system for your project.

The presentation covered interesting case studies and models currently manufactured by Materialise from different materials. Among them, Darya mentioned a mind-blowing Spider Dress 2.0 equipped with an Intel Edison chip that reads biosignals to defend the wearer’s personal space.

spider dress materialise

Additional questions showed that people are not yet fully aware of functional potential available with new technologies. Somebody asked what it would cost to produce an Ikea-like lamp using 3D printing.

Obviously, the lamp will be unique. This approach, however, fails to exploit the inherent advantages of the process not limited to ‘one of its kind.’ To take full advantage of additive manufacturing, you need to rethink production design making it more cost-effective and enhancing performance parameters. The new geometric freedom is another unique advantage of 3D printing.

* * *

The largest 3D printers installed at Materialise can produce components 2 meters in height. But if you need an entry-level home 3D printer you can as well make your own customized system. Alexander Novakovskyy from 3DP company says a 3D printer cobbled together from whatever parts you can find may cost you only $500 if you know where to buy the components. From choosing a RepRap or RepStrap strategy for your 3D printer to finding the best-suited print head, every step is achievable. But get ready to be on short terms with G-code, an ‘official language’ of 3D printers.

3D Print Conference in Kyiv

* * *

Eugene Kozhukhovskyy, Managing Partner of SmartPrint, thinks that Ukraine has a good global market potential for 3D printing with the SMB sector entering massive technology adaptation.

For Ukraine and former CIS countries, spare parts are the most demanded 3D components now. But your customers may be located globally if you find the right way to reach out to them.

According to Kozhukhovskyy, an average price claimed by print services providers at 3D Hubs (local 3D printing services and 3D printing) is 0.98 euro per 1 gram for Europe and only 0.19 euro per 1 gram for Ukraine.

At present, twenty 3D printers are available in Kyiv via 3D Hubs service (30 in Ukraine). However, if you plan to enter the segment, do not sell you services but rather try to solve your clients’ problems, he says.

In September, SmartPrint initiated a charity project offering free 3D printed prosthetics for children without arms and/or hands. The feedback shows that the interest is huge, so the company is open for charity cooperation with other 3D print service providers.

Charity Project 3D printing

* * *

Medical startup ARanEd founded by Andrey Maranov, a medical student from Kyiv, suggests a holistic approach to human skeleton research using 3D printing and augmented reality.

Project participants scan human bones to make accurate 3D printed copies as real human samples are prohibited for medical students now. They claim that their representations are attractively priced and their quality meets strict demands of both students and doctors (the skeleton will cost you about $400).

Maranov’s second project is a mobile application to scan and to visualize the real structure of human body with the help of AU technologies.

In 2015, the startup has already become a winner of PioneersKyiv festival, a part of Europe’s major startup and investor conference, and was presented successfully at Thiel Summit in Saint Francisco, June 2015.

* * *

Alexander Nam, Head of Software & Hardware Development at EnvisionTEC, told about 3D printing of scaffolds for bioengineering enabling the production of functional living implants out of cells obtained from cell culture.

In contrast to conventional rapid prototyping systems, mainly focused on melt processing, the 3D-Bioplotter by EnvisionTEC can apply a much larger variety of synthetic as well as natural materials, including aqueous solutions and pastes, to fabricate scaffolds for tissue engineering.

Today, dental clinics and laboratories are already facing a digital upheaval. Bone reconstruction technologies with the help of three-dimensional structures are being developed. The next step will be organ transplantation.

Only in the US, an average of 22 people dies each day waiting for transplants that can’t take place because of the shortage of donated organs. The gap between the demand and available organs continues to widen. 3D printed kidneys could potentially save thousands of lives.

It’s still a long way to fully functional tissue engineering. According to Alexander, one may expect a 3D printed liver in about 15 years and a 3D printed heart in 25 years.

Alexander Nam, 3D Print Conference in Kyiv

Olivier Poujol portraits

Print Hi-Tech: August

Printing, digital, and marketing convergence

Interesting news and case studies involving printing and digital technologies covered in my regular ‘Hi-Tech’ category.

Today: the world’s oldest multicolored printed book; collages and portraits created from packaging tape; a completely 3D printed fashion collection; 3D Print Conference returns to Kyiv.

The Oldest Multicolored Printed Book

The world’s oldest multicolor book printed in China is now digitized and available at Cambridge University Library’s site. The 17th century manual presenting examples of calligraphy and painting (Shi zhu zhai shu hua pu) is so fragile that it was previously forbidden to be opened.

Created in 1633, the book is the earliest known example of polychrome xylography, when several printing blocks are applied in succession with different inks to achieve the appearance of a hand-painted watercolor.

The manual contains eight categories showcasing birds, plumbs, orchids, bamboos, fruit, stones, ink drawings and miscellany.

The Oldest Multicolored Printed Book

Image courtesy: Cambridge University Library

Portraits from Packaging Tapes

Olivier Poujol, a French artist living in Marocco since 2011, uses packaging tape to create stunning collages and portraits.

When Olivier arrived to Morocco, he was struck by its beauty, culture… and piles of cardboard boxes with packing adhesives. Soon he discovered that Moroccans reuse almost everything. So, Olivier began turning these waste items into true works of art creating his collages from several layers of scotch in a table.

“Tones, colors, shapes and emotions I create from such simple material like the packing tape, never stop to surprise me,” Olivier says.

Portraits from Packaging Tapes

3D Printing Clothes at Home

Digital сouture takes fashion in new directions. After the acceptance of sublimation printers, designers are slowly adopting 3D printing, usually for accessories or clothes parts.

Israeli fashion student Danit Peleg created a completely 3D printed fashion collection using desktop 3D printers installed at her home. When she first embarked on her 3D printing project, she knew absolutely nothing about the technology.

The collection was designed over a nine month period, with 3D printers running for about 2,000 hours. The results of this project are presented in the clip below.

Bonus: Made in Ukraine

On September 10, 3D Print Conference returned to Kyiv for the second time. For now, it’s the largest Ukrainian event covering 3D printing and 3D scanning technologies.

The conference featured a full day of workshops and presentations plus an exhibition where manufacturers, distributors, and 3D printing service providers demonstrated their technologies and solutions. Session topics explored latest technologies, trends, and business applications, as well as the best strategies and tip for users of 3D printers.

A detailed post on the conference and presentations can be found here.

3D Print Conference Kyiv


Photos by: 3dprintconf.com.ua

Printing back in style

Print Hi-Tech: May

Printing, digital, and marketing convergence

Interesting news and case studies involving printing and digital technologies covered in my regular ‘Hi-Tech’ category.

Today: printed catalogs as a part of multi-channel marketing strategy; an original paper bridge in the UK; ultra-fast 3D printing technology; the Voronoi diagram for better-looking 3D models.

Printing is back in style

Recently, J. C. Penney, a chain of American mid-range department stores, announced its plans to resurrect its printed catalog. After the catalog mailings peak in 2007 and the lowest mailings level in 2012, specialty retailers are again rethinking the print medium as an important and relevant tool for sales and marketing strategies. Even digital retailers including Bonobos and Birchbox are beginning to move into printed catalogs.

Printed products are returning as a source of high quality marketing that can engage customers and build brands. A longer catalog could be sent for regular purchasers, while a shorter version could be a friendly reminder directing the customer to the company’s website.

Nordstrom reports that customers who have a multi-channel relationship with the brand spend four times as much as those who do not. And the impact of printed media is easier to track compared with digital channels. New production and printing technologies including industrial inkjet presses are coming to streamline production and make versioning simple and cost-effective.

Printing is back in style

A paper bridge: Would you use it?

A unique paper bridge, a temporary piece of work by artist Steve Messam, appeared this May at the top of the Grisedale Valley in Great Britain. Made out of 22,000 paper sheets, the bridge stood through wind and rain for 10 days until its removal.

Steve Messam spent three years developing the fully-functioning bridge and it was commissioned by Lakes Culture as part of its Lakes Ignite 2015 programme. He said the structure was sturdy enough to support the weight of walkers because the 4.5 tonnes of paper made it twice as strong as oak. The paper was specially formulated by James Cropper, a papermaker.

The eye-catching construction was five metres long and had no glue, bolts or fixings. It relied on authentic architectural principles as used in original bridges known to the Romans. The intensity of colour contrasted with the landscape, making a bold statement of form and design.

Paper Bridge

Carbon3D: Ultra-fast 3D printing technology

Autodesk announced that it would invest $10 million into the Silicon Valley start-up, Carbon3D’s ultrafast, layerless DLP process, known as CLIP 3D printing. According to developers, Carbon3D will offer 25-100x higher printing speeds compared to competitors.

The new printing process is layerless. It means that  its prints will have the same level of structural integrity as injection molded parts.

Autodesk president and CEO, Carl Bass, said of the new investment, “Carbon3D embodies the innovation that’s required to change how products are made. The incredible speed of its CLIP technology makes 3D printing accessible for true manufacturing, beyond the prototyping and the one-offs we see it being used for now.”

Autodesk is manufacturing its own, more traditional DLP 3D printer. But by pushing the industry forward, more companies will be likely to adopt its Spark 3D printing software so that 3D printing might become synonymous with Autodesk.

Bonus: Made in Ukraine

The Ukrainian mathematician Georgy Voronoy defined what is now known as the Voronoi diagram. In a very simple form, the Voronoi diagram describes the partitioning of a plane into separate regions based on the distance to points in a specific subsection of the plane. Each of those partitions includes a corresponding region which is made up of all the points closer to that partition than to any other.

It appears that the Voronoi diagram can make 3D printed models look better. Marshall Peck of ProtoBuilds added the Voronoi pattern to his STL files and the resultant 3D models by importing them into Autodesk Meshmixer.

He says the patterns can provide “consistent horizontal cross sections for slices that might be helpful when using SLA resin 3D printers” and adds that models created with the technique “can print well on most Fused Filament 3D printers.” You can check out his tutorial on how to apply the Voronoi effects to your 3D models on his site, as well as further details in an Instructable he wrote on the subject.

the Voronoi diagram can make 3D printed models look better

minion yellow

Print Hi-Tech: April

Printing, digital, and marketing convergence

Today: the first character-named Pantone color in the company’s history; an ultra-thin film that changes its color like a chameleon; liquid-metal alloys for inkjet printing on flexibles; the fifth International Arsenal Book Festival in Kyiv.

Minion Yellow: an official new Pantone color

Pantone announced its first-ever character-branded colour inspired by Minions. Pantone Color Institute describes it as an ‘illuminating, energetic, friendly and fun-loving yellow shade that immediately calls out to you’.

While the Pantone Color Institute noted that consumers were eager to add energizing colors into their lives, Pharrell Williams, who took part in creating the music for the Despicable Me, came up with an unusual idea. Together with Illumination Entertainment, Pantone team reviewed the existing colors to find the closest representation of the iconic yellow shade.

The result was the Pantone Minion Yellow, the custom warm and playful extroverted hue, meant to be associated with intellectual curiosity and enlightenment. It will be added to the PANTONE Fashion, Home + Interiors color palette with the next color addition.

Minion Yellow: an official new Pantone color

Chameleon-like material changes color on demand

UC Berkeley engineers created an ultra-thin film that can shift colors when flexed or bent. With most natural and artificial materials, color depends on chemical composition. Changing color, therefore, requires changing the material chemistry. The new silicon ‘skin,’ on the other hand, leverages ‘structural coloration’.

In their research, engineers cut rows of ridges on a layer of semiconductor silicon a thousand times thinner than a single strand of hair. Each of those ridges reflects a specific wavelength of light. As the silicon is bent or flexed, the structure of the material changes, becoming green, yellow, orange and red.

Because the material is lighter and more flexible than previous variants, the color-shifting effect could have a wide range of applications. The material would work well with outdoor entertainment displays. It would be useful for military applications, including camouflage. Its creators believe the material also has potential  in building safety. The silicon could be used in sensors for bridges, airplanes and buildings, changing color in case of damage or structural stress.

Chameleon-like material changes color on demand

Inkjet can become compatible with liquid-metal alloys

Inkjet-printing technology may soon find its way into mass production of flexible electronic circuits based on liquid-metal alloys. Elastic technologies might bring a new class of pliable robots and stretchable clothing created for therapeutic purposes or for interaction with computers.

The new printable ink is made by dispersing the liquid gallium-indium in a non-metallic solvent using ultrasound, which breaks up the bulk liquid metal into nanoparticles. This nanoparticle-filled ink is compatible with inkjet printing systems.

The liquid-metal nanoparticles are initially coated with a protective layer of oxidised gallium. So after printing, the nanoparticles must be rejoined by applying light pressure, which makes the material conductive. You can activate only some sectors across the surface, suggesting that a standard film might be manufactured for many potential tailored applications.

Inkjet can become compatible with liquid-metal alloys

Bonus: Made in Ukraine

On April 22, on the eve of the World Book and Copyright Day, the V International Arsenal Book Festival opened at Mystetskyi Arsenal in Kyiv. The biggest book event in Ukraine combines art and literature.

The program of the Arsenal Book Festival traditionally includes presentations of new editions, discussions, lectures, public interviews, readings and performances, open-air poetry and music programs. Cafe Europa, the central international stage, hosted 40 writers, speakers and artists from 12 countries. The first experimental art stage featured contemporary Ukrainian typography, calligraphy, printing samples.

More than 150 leading publishing houses and international partners took part in Arsenal Book Festival representing fiction, children, non-fiction, and art literature. The first translation of Quran was among the most significant announcements: it took translator Mykhailo Yakubovych five years to translate Quran into Ukrainian.

V International Arsenal Book Festival

Photo: calligraphy.com.ua

V International Arsenal Book Festival

Photo: calligraphy.com.ua

eBook versus printed book

Print Hi-Tech: March

Printing, digital, and marketing convergence

More interesting news and case studies involving printing and digital technologies covered in my regular ‘Hi-Tech’ category.

Today I prepared a special ‘spring’ edition with the focus on sustainability: ‘greener’ books, biodegradable bottles, food scraps for 3D printing instead of plastics.

Reuse principles are also going to change mobile communications: Ukrainian Avox is on its way to revolution of free calls to both mobiles and landline.

eBook versus printed book

In 2014, eBooks were outsold by both hardcovers and paperbacks. Book lovers are opting for both, but which variant is ‘greener’? To answer that provocative question, one should turn to basic sustainability options and life cycle analysis.

We must consider not only the trees for paper versus components of electronics products, but also the shipping costs, fuel, and ultimately the recycling issues. Where does e-waste end up?

According to a study from the Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden, an eBook begins to compensate for a print book when at least 33 digital works with around 360 pages have been read. In other words, it is a viable option for heavy readers

A book may leave a carbon footprint of 250 g to 1 kg. Eco-publishing, lighter formats, reuse, recycling help to lower emitted kg of CO2 per book as much as possible.

eBook versus printed editions

Biodegradable ‘paper’ bottle

At the World Economic Forum in Davos, Carlsberg presented the world’s first Green Fiber Bottle, which will be much lighter and fully biodegradable. Developers are going to get a non-transparent, non-breakable bottle with clear fiber structure.

The Green Fiber Bottle is being developed in partnership with the Technical University of Denmark. All materials used, including the cap, will be bio-based and biodegradable. It is worth noting that in the US, only 28% of glass was recycled in 2012.

Last year similar technology was presented by GreenBottle from UK, which was used in a US line of paper wine bottles Paper Boy with a plastic bladder inside a cardboard bottle. However, the new beverage container made from sustainably sourced wood fiber is planned to be produced in one piece with an inner coating that will decompose naturally. Moreover, Carlsberg isn’t going to keeping this technology confidential.

Biodegradable ‘paper’ bottle

Food Scraps for 3D Printing

As new applications of 3D printing appear and more affordable printers enter the market, public interest in additive printers is increasing exponentially. According to Gartner’s recent prediction, worldwide shipments of 3D printers will double in 2015 as compared to 2014 and the trend will continue till 2018.

Most of us have a strong interest in recycling these days. People feel increasingly responsible for heaps of plastic filament, not to mention 3D models ending up in the trash. Marina Ceccolini, an Italian designer, offered a highly available material for ‘green’ printing process. AgriDust consists of waste (64.5%) and a binder from potato starch (35.5%). The technology supports six types of waste: coffee grounds, peanut shell, husk tomato, bean pod, orange waste and lemon waste. You can use it to create pots for plants and packaging.

To use it as a material for 3D printers, the classic extruder is replaced with a syringe. “I don’t want to eliminate the use of plastic, because in some sectors that is unthinkable, but in the case of disposable products, you might start to think and act differently,” says Ceccolini.

Food Scraps for 3D Printing

Bonus: Made in Ukraine

Reuse and sharing are among best ways to reduce consumer waste and increase sustainability globally. Ukrainian founders of Avox are pretty sure that sharing resources philosophy has the power to change the global telecommunication market.

Avox works when 3G and WiFi are not available and it is free to call both landline and mobile phone regardless of its 3G/WiFi access. The key is Avox proprietary solution, VoIP > GSM gateway, sharing users’ mobile minutes to the Avox cloud and reallocating them among others.

The featured free app for Android phones supports voice call, instant messaging, daily stats, and share control. For now, the beta is compatible with MTK6575 and MTK6577 chipsets. Tested on: Prestigio MultiPhone 4055 Duo, Gigabyte Gsmar Maya M1, Fly iq445, Lenovo a630.

The app has already been installed by more than 10,000 mobile users from the US, Germany, Spain, Italy, Ukraine, Belarus. The more locals use the app, the more free minutes are available for sharing among them.

Avox works when 3G and WiFi are not available

Newspaper press marks 200 years

Print Hi-Tech: December

Printing, digital, and marketing convergence

More interesting news and case studies involving printing and publishing technologies in my regular ‘Hi-Tech’ category.

Today: a 200-year-old printing press; inkjet technologies for haute couture; 3D photos; an awesome book-based app.

Newspaper press marks 200 years

At the end of 1814, Friedrich Koenig and Andreas Bauer printed The Times in London using a steam-powered double-cylinder press, 360 years after Gutenberg’s hand press. In 2014, mechanical newspaper printing celebrated its 200th birthday.

To use steam power instead of hard labour, Friedrich Koenig implemented a rotating cylinder into the printing process. The hourly output of 1,100 printed sheets meant that productivity increased by almost 5 times compared to Gutenberg’s hand press.

Printing paper sheets on one side (straight printing), the ‘Times press’ was an important landmark in the 500-year plus history of printing.

Newspaper press marks 200 years

The photo shows a 1:2 scaled replica found in the KBA museum

‘Digital Couture’ at New York Fashion Week

Epson, the company that likely manufactured your printer, has teamed up with fashion designers to bring a unique project to New York Fashion Week this February.

Eleven designers from across the Americas will use new digital sublimation printers to show that digital prints may look cool. Some famous designers have already become early adopters of dye sublimation technology using it in their work.

Epson is sure that the digital couture can take fashion in new directions. A good fabric with a proper base colour will be enough for creating original collections.

Digital Couture: Epson at New York Fashion Week

3D photos for people without vision

Touchable Memories by pirate3D is a social experiment named among top ten 3D printing stories of 2014. An totally new application for this innovative technology is a great example of endless possibilities to make our lives better with the help of printing.

Testing 3D printing in a brand new field showed incredible results. An affordable home printer turned photographs into 3D-printed objects. The visually-impaired people experienced forgotten and never seen images by fabricating tangible scenes of them.

The video documentary describes how the 3D models open a way to visualize memories that were photographed.

Bonus: Made in Ukraine

In December, The Snow Queen, the world-renowned Hans Christian Andersen story, came to life on iPhones. Timecode, a Kiev-based apps and software developer, offered a universal build both for iPads and iPhones.

A interactive edition is based on the award-winning book published by A-BA-BA-GA-LA-MA-GA publishing house. In 2006, The Snow Queen became the book of the year in the US.

The Snow Queen’s detailed illustrations were originally drawn by Ukranian artist Vladyslav Yerko using ultra-fine brushes under a large magnifying glass and then animated and enhanced for iOS. Readers can make snow fall, stoke a fire, see themselves in a magic mirror, uncover hidden objects and games. The application is available in three versions: Ukrainian, Russian and English.

International Print Day 2014

International Print Day 2014

Let’s make Print trend the world

On October 8, 2014, the global on-line print community shared info about print using the hashtag #IPD14: International Print Day 2014.

It was the first global on-line print and integrated marketing event delivered through social media.

Final stats:

6PM ET 10/7/14 – 8PM ET 10/8/14

  • 8,683 Tweets
  • delivered to 23,023,968 timelines
  • with 1,271 contributors

The participants were encouraged to provide information to the global print and integrated marketing community through 24-hr open knowledge sharing and answer one question in 10 words or less: Why Print?

After looking through #IPD14 tweets I decided to make two lists of most popular and valuable tweets: my favourite ones, which I consider the most relevant, and top tweets according to topsy.com (unfortunately, the service iss no longer available). Hope you will find something useful here if you’ve missed the online event (like me). And be sure to check the hashtag yourself!

My favourite tweets #IPD14

Why print? Because a hospital visit can become a space voyage



10 Excellent Ways to Celebrate International Print Day http://bit.ly/1vVUkap 

This is kinda epic. One of our biggest building wraps.


Print has one of the least-expensive cost per impression in marketing: http://ow.ly/CqU0W


Getting the chop! instagram.com/p/t5ddioiK_o (Make sure your audio is on!)

On #IPD14 – get the facts! Print is big, print is GREEN, and print is neccessary!


Final print post today! History of the first printed Christmas card


Perfect for #IPD14! Print books are still outselling ebooks http://huff.to/1vIFaDv 

It’s International Print Day! Here’s a little print humour for you 😉


And even more popular #IPD14 tweets from topsy.com

Want something creative to do for #IPD14? Here’s 113 ‘magic hands’ folding videos = folded inspiration! tinyurl.com/lukc39r

All About That Ink

STOP THE PRESSES! We just found out it’s International Print Day! Just kidding, don’t stop the presses.


An absolutely awesome post from our ‘live’ twitter-Facebook wall.


Print and Paper Have a Great Environment Story! ow.ly/Csw2w

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If you are interested in printing and printing technologies, here is the next date for you to mark.

October 14, 2015: 24 hours of open global knowledge sharing through social media! #IPD15