Computer: Printer: Personality
sarky printer   (+7)  [vote for, against]
have a more eloquent fight with your laserjet

i have been having a running battle with my printer for sometime now. it jams, runs out of ink/paper/, spends eternity warming up, processing etc. at THE most inopportune times.

so while I'm screaming and shouting at it the LCD display just blinks back the usual: 'warming up,' 'processing job' etc.

it would make for a much more fulfilling slanging match if the printer could give some back. so what i suggest is an inbuilt memory of say 200 phrases which alternate for the normal messgaes 'processing job' becomes: 'in a rush, tough luck fat boy,' 'paper out' becomes 'I can't print on fresh air fuckwit.'

cue pistols at dawn for me and my HP.
-- etherman, May 19 2004

for etherman
[Gromit, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

more hp printer tips
more of the same [neilp, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

take revenge http://www.halfbake...inter_20punch_20bag
[etherman, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

It is an ex-printer http://www.geocitie.../pics/exprinter.jpg
Might not be such a good idea for printers to be any more annoying. [chud, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

This one fights back
[davem, Feb 10 2005]

I'd love it - the more cryptic the Better, imagine the opportunity for sarcasm with helpdesk staff.
-- neilp, May 19 2004

would be good if you could remnotely do it from your PC in a networked office situation. 'pain in the ass managers job processing now.' 'warming up for underdressed secretary.' etc.
-- etherman, May 19 2004

i just accidentally deleted the last anno. I'm really sorry. It was a useful one too. I didn't get who wrote it either. if they would redo it I would be eternally greatful. Sorry.
-- etherman, May 19 2004

Fine for an inkjet, but imagine the fun you could have making your old dot-matrix printer talk simply through the rhythm of the pins striking the paper...

-- suctionpad, May 19 2004

Arg, it was mine. It was about a smart aleck programmer at a previous job who discovered that it is quite easy to manipulate what is displayed on the LCD display on an HP printer using remote commands. (In fact, there is more than one way to do it). So he had all the printers in our company displaying spoof versions of HP error messages, like "TONER HIGH" and "PAPER TOO SPICY". When the printer was idle, he had it display the current stock price of our company.

This bit of fun came to an end when an anal-retentive IT manager found out about it and told him to stop, claiming the messages were "confusing the users."
-- krelnik, May 19 2004

sorry krelnik. you dont happen to know how this guy did it? if anyone out there knows they could make me very happy and my relationship with my printer could attain Darth Vader and Luke proportions. "Ether, you are my son. hhhhggggaahhh"
-- etherman, May 19 2004

Inject a bit of Marvin the paranoid Android into it:
"Oh no, not another Word document. Brain the size of a planet.." etc.
-- Ling, May 19 2004

or what if it could read your documents and take the mick:

"sales and marketing Yawn Yawn Yawn."

"two Ms in accommodation you moron"
-- etherman, May 19 2004

//happen to know how this guy did it? //
The straightforward way to do it is via an SNMP SET command. The other way apparently involves sending a print job to the printer with some obscure escape sequence enclosed.
-- krelnik, May 19 2004

//happen to know how this guy did it? // Who cares, that must have been some day ;)
-- dpsyplc, May 19 2004

So, do you mean "snarky?" I'm not familiar with the "sarky" term.

Also, it seems you are describing a laser printer rather than an inkjet, no?  I've not seen very many inkjets that need to warm up, or that have an LCD display.
-- bristolz, May 20 2004

I've changed the ready message on HPs; the sequence is straightforward:

-- benjamin, May 20 2004

[bris] sarky = sarcastic.

it seems to be missing from every known dictionary, but it's a common enough ukism.
p.s. good to see you back
-- neilp, May 20 2004

//have a more eloquent fight with your laserjet//

indeed it is a laser prinetr <bris>

excuse mt deep ignorance, which is probably the stem of my run ins with the printer, but how do i use this command <benjamin> ?

oh and neilp is indeed right, sarky is sarcastic in UK & Ireland. Thought it would have been transatlantic but apparently not.
-- etherman, May 20 2004

[etherman] - easiest way (without requiring any programming) is to (1) put it in a file, and then (2) copy it to the printer.

(1) The 'Ec' at the beginning of each line means the ESC character (ascii code 27) which you might need a half-decent text editor to enter. Each line should end with a CRLF (standard PC text file).

Sounds too hard? No problem! Download the sample file I created (see link).

(2) To copy it to the printer, type the following at a command prompt:

copy filename printerpath
eg: copy c:\foo\readymsg.txt lpt1:
or: copy c:\foo\readymsg.txt \\server\printershare
-- benjamin, May 20 2004

[benjamin] - after doing this how long will the message persist? How do you undo this and return to the default setting? Is this a documented function which is guaranteed not to cause any permanent change or is it a secret hack that might just muck up a newer printer?
-- dobtabulous, May 20 2004

thanks benjamin, you truely are gifted in the ways of the force. cheers big ears!

[no offence, ear based or other wise, intended]
-- etherman, May 20 2004

has anyone written a little application that lets you edit all of these settings, I reckon it would be a top download (until sysadmins password protected their printer shares).
-- neilp, May 20 2004

I guess I was thrown by the reference to the printer running out of ink.

Thank you, [neilp].
-- bristolz, May 20 2004

[dobtabulous] -
// after doing this how long will the message persist? //
It survives a print job, and playing with the control panel (well, the green off/online button, as we keep our control panels locked). It doesn't survive a power cycle.

// How do you undo this and return to the default setting? //
Commands are available on the web; there's probably a reset. Or just send "READY". Or turn the printer off and on.

// Is this a documented function //

// which is guaranteed not to cause any permanent change //
I guarantee nothing, sorry. But nothing permanent on my test printer (an HP4000).
-- benjamin, May 20 2004

In software, nothing is guaranteed.
-- bristolz, May 21 2004

My printer is a bastard made of plastic and metal. It'd probably say "I'm busy, why don't you just write it by hand, you lazy asshole."
-- schematics, May 21 2004

[krelnik]'s "PAPER TOO SPICY" had me laughing out loud. I must try this.
-- Worldgineer, May 21 2004

//My printer is a bastard made of plastic and metal//

I hear you [schemtics] I've got an idea for the pair of us. <link>
-- etherman, Jun 17 2004

//In software, nothing is guaranteed.//

you cant get guarantees for software beezee?
-- etherman, Jul 16 2004

random, halfbakery