I will be in the States for three months, taking my laptop with me. I have a
wireless printer at home. If I leave the printer turned on, can I possibly
print documents from down south so that I have them when I get them back?
Possibly a stupid question but I thought I’d ask any way.
In this excerpt from
Answercast #95 I look at the idea of leaving a printer on at home and
printing documents while on a trip.
Print to my printer at home
Definitely not a stupid question and in fact there is technology that is referred to as “cloud printing” that I believe actually covers this scenario.
Now I say, “I believe” because to be honest, it’s not something I’ve ever played with. And to be even more honest, you know what? I wouldn’t rely on the printer at home staying on, or staying connected, or even building up a system that required that printer work when you’re not there to fix something that could go wrong.
Print to PDF
What that would allow you to do is, while you’re on the road, print what you need to PDF files. Save those PDF files. You can even mail them to yourself or upload them to a place where you can get at them again later when you’re at home. Or, of course, keep them on a safe place on your PC.
Print when you get home
The key there being – when you get home, and you’re there to babysit the printer, you can then safely and reliably print all of the things that you created PDFs of while you were on your trip.
My sense is that’s going to be a more reliable, more successful solution to what it is you’re trying to do.
If someone can watch the printer
The only scenario that this doesn’t cover is if, in fact, you have someone back at home who can fix the printer when the paper jams – and in fact needs that printout of whatever you’re printing out at that time before you get home.
In that situation, again, I probably am more tempted to print to PDF and email the PDFs to that person who needed them and let them handle printing to actual paper.
(Transcript lightly edited for readability.)