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CeBIT 2001: A Coffee Pot Provides a View of Print Production in the Future

Press release from the issuing company

3/01 - CeBIT 2001 - Even on a cold, rainy day the CeBIT fair attracts thousands of visitors in search of the technology that moves them forward. Every hall has something to show, much of it geared toward crafting new products and services.  Our first stop this morning was at the Stollmannbooth in Hall 15 where we were attracted by their attractive blue coffee pot. But it was more than a coffee pot, it was a Bluetooth coffee pot, wirelessly linked to the notebook computer sitting nearby that showed the current temperature of the coffee in the pot, and how much coffee was left in the pot. Cute, you say, but what does that mean to your business. You don't sell coffee, and everyone shares responsibility for keeping the coffee brewing! Here is why it is important.... the technology that tells the temperature of the coffee and the level of the coffee in the pot could just as easily be telling your technicians the level of toner or ink in your print devices. And, beyond that, it could keep track of the temperature and humidity inside the printer to allow for more accurate preventative maintenance, and even alert the operators to humidity problems with paper as it is being loaded, preventing the downtime caused by paper jams. With constant, automated monitoring via Bluetooth-enabled sensors the printers of tomorrow need less maintenance and run more impressions between problems. Here is the opportunity... no one is doing this yet! The demonstration by Stollmann shows the feasibility of using components they can supply to build the next generation, self-monitoring print devices. Knowing that it can be done gives you the power to talk intelligently with the hardware vendors you deal with about what you want and need in future generations of devices you intend to purchase. While the coffeepot was a great way for Stollmann to explain the possibilities of their their product, they are not the only vendor with infrastructure products to offer. As we traverse more of the 29 halls tomorrow our first stop will be Hall 13, the Bluetooth Exchange, where we expect to find many more innovations. The Internet Park in Hall 6 was another stop on today's technology tour. There are many companies with web-enabled workflow, document management, and supply and logistics products, most using the tried and true techniques learned in the client-server networking world. Today they have moved the applications to an internet-enabled platform, opening up a vast range of information delivery possibilities beyond paper reports delivered with the morning office mail or even email to a tethered desktop. Most vendors see PDAs, Palm and Pocket PC platforms, as the delivery platform of choice for the business manager. Whether it's managing the paper supply, arranging for content proofing, or confirming orders, these vendors are formatting the reporting for wireless delivery to provide maximum flexibility for their customers.