Posts tagged: Kodak

Leveraging Kodak Flexo Technology to Print Touch-screen Sensors

Jim Hamilton
 Sep 25, 2015

In a huge manufacturing building in the Eastman Business Park in Rochester, New York, Kodak is printing sensors that can be used in touch screens for tablets, computer screens, kiosks, and industrial equipment. The process uses technologies that print service providers will find familiar, but they are being used to achieve a very different end result.

First, a series of flexographic plates are imaged on a modified Creo square-spot plate imager. Each plate has a repetitive design of extremely thin parallel lines. The plates are mounted on a modified roll-fed flexographic press that prints with a catalytic ink on both sides of a roll of clear plastic (similar to the material used for motion picture film). The catalytic ink provides a receptive surface for the next step, in which the printed roll of plastic is immersed in a bath with a copper fluid solution. In that bath, copper is applied to the thin printed lines of catalytic ink. The copper is what makes the resulting print conductive, and that’s why you can make touch screens with this printed component. A darkening agent is applied on top of the copper, and the rolls are then cut into sheets containing the functionally printed sensor that will ultimately go into a touch-screen display. This printed grid of thin, crisscrossing lines is virtually invisible, yet it provides the underlying conductive foundation that is able to sense when someone puts a finger on a touch-sensitive screen.

Kodak touch-screen sensor (showing a magnified view of the touch-sensitive grid)

Today Kodak is printing working production samples that can be tested by prospects who may one day Read more »

Graph Expo Expectations

Jim Hamilton
 Sep 8, 2015

Graph Expo 2015 (September 13-16, Chicago) begins on Sunday and whether you are able to be there or not, here are a few things you should know in advance.

Who Has the Biggest Booths on the Show Floor?

One good way of assessing the level of marketing spend that an exhibitor has made on a trade show is to measure the size of their booth. InfoTrends has been doing this for shows like Graph Expo, Print, IPEX, and drupa for many years. This year, the biggest exhibitors (by square foot of exhibit space as measured from the publicly available show floor map) are shown below.

Canon, as was the case at Graph Expo 2014, has the largest booth, followed by Konica Minolta. HP is in the number three spot, up from number six last year. Xerox dropped down a spot and is followed by Ricoh, EFI, Pitney Bowes, and Standard Finishing. KIP America breaks into the top ten at number nine. Last year’s number nine, Muller Martini, is not exhibiting. The top twelve is rounded out by Kodak, KBA, and Scodix. Traditional offset vendors (including some with new digital offerings) will be exhibiting, but not in the biggest booths (KBA is the only one in the top twelve). Offset system providers with booths include Goss, Komori, manroland, Presstek, Ryobi MHI, and TKS, but not Heidelberg, which hasn’t been a Graph Expo exhibitor since 2011.

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Konica Minolta Announces Next Generation High Resolution, High Speed MEMS Printheads

Ron Gilboa
 Jul 27, 2015

Konica Minolta, a long time innovator in inkjet technology with over 30 years of experience, has released information on a new generation of print heads aimed at the evolving graphic arts, industrial, and functional printing markets. These printheads have resolution as high as 1,200 nozzles per inch (npi), drop size as low as 3 picoliters, jetting frequency of up to 100 kHz, and a physical size that is significantly smaller than the previous generation of Konica Minolta heads. As with many print head manufacturers Konica Minolta is manufacturing these printhead using Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS) fabrication. Konica Minolta’s high precision printhead is capable of jetting of a range of inks and functional materials such as resins. These new capabilities will enable innovative new products in a range of industries. Konica Minolta expects to begin mass production of these heads in the spring of 2016. Read more »

Bielomatti’s new PageMaster – Production Inkjet driven by Finishing

Ralf Schlozer
 Dec 16, 2014

Without much fanfare a new continuous feed inkjet printing line has appeared on the market. The new system is called PageMaster, and it was introduced at an open house in the middle of November at Bielomatik’s facility in Neuffen in Southern Germany. PageMaster is an integrated inkjet printing and converting line for booklets or notepads that is being marketed by a new organization called Bielomatti, as part of a joint venture between Bielomatik and Matti. Bielomatik has a 60% stake in the joint venture and therefore will have a larger role in marketing and driving the product. So far the joint venture has no permanent staff and draws resources from both companies as needed. Once the demand takes off, the company will add staff accordingly.

Matti has a lot of experience designing paper transport and print towers for a range of vendors including Kodak, Xerox, and Xerox Impika. The company also markets printing solutions directly to end customers. These are typically custom solutions integrating paper transport and inkjet heads.

Bielomatik is the by far larger partner with 900 employees worldwide (Matti has about 25 employees). Bielomatik focusses on paper processing and plastic welding equipment. In the paper processing the company manufactures complete lines for a somewhat diverse range of applications: the production of copybooks/notepads (the types used in schools), lines for converting bank notes, attaching RFID tags, and wrapping of cut-sheet papers. Apart from basic flexo units that print lines or grids into the copybooks no printing equipment is offered. Accordingly the company’s expertise is in folding, sheeting, collating, and binding in high volume 24/7 environments. Not surprisingly a decline in the established copybook markets is driving the company to seek other opportunities. Read more »

Nine Print Sample Videos from Graph Expo 2014

Jim Hamilton
 Dec 9, 2014

I’ve recorded nine short videos (each is three and half minutes or less) that highlight some interesting print samples from Graph Expo 2014:

Frankly Speaking: To Ink

Frank Romano
 Sep 2, 2014
End of summer silliness by Frank Romano

I think that I shall never see
Inkjet ink that is not pricey

Ink that comes in color and black
Ink that always sets me back

Ink that drips but never a flood
Costing more than human blood

Inkjet pricing that is not humane
On a par with vintage champagne

Ink that comes in magenta, yellow, and cyan
Ink that is more expensive than a trip to Cannes

We’re paying for that unique ink storage
But purchase requires a second mortgage

Kodak tried to sell ink really cheaply
Kodak may regret the episode deeply

Ink that takes an age to unwrap
Ink that generates a lot of scrap

But now I recycle those colors and blacks
And I get a peanut-sized discount at OfficeMax

But what does the future hold?
Inkjet ink becomes the new gold

Poems are made by fools like me
But ink is made by folks like HP

 

Join Frank Romano and InfoTrends’ Jim Hamilton at Graph Expo 14 for a special keynote seminar on “The Future of the American Printer” in Chicago on Sunday, September 28.

Kodak Alaris Introduces Two New Scanners

Anne Valaitis
 Jun 16, 2014

On June 4th, Kodak Alaris announced the addition of two new scanners to their product portfolio. The KODAK SCANMATE i1150 and KODAK SCANMATE i1180 are positioned as transaction based scanning devices. Each device is positioned uniquely to capture and then facilitate a business process. As paper usage within business matures and transitions, the time to capture valuable content from remaining pages increases. Kodak Alaris has worked with customers to identify and observe specific needs for scan and capture in these specific business environments. Read more »

When the CEO Visits a Customer Event

Jim Hamilton
 Jun 12, 2014

I’ve spoken at two recent graphic arts events where something unusual happened. Chief Executive Officers of billion-plus dollar companies were in attendance speaking to customers and prospects. This is not only unusual, it’s also very symbolic, and it underscores the importance of a kind of event that is happening more and more frequently: invitation-only customer/prospect events held at a company-owned or partner facility. Customers and prospects are flown in, wined & dined, shown the latest product updates, and given a strategy update by senior executives. And in case you were wondering, the marketing dollars spent at these events are very likely those that were saved by not participating at IPEX or other graphic arts trade shows.

At left, Xerox's Ursula Burns cuts the ribbon while Jeff Jacobson and Paul Morgavi look on; at right, Kodak's new CEO Jeff Clarke (in tie) with ImageMark's Walter Payne

  • Xerox’s Inkjet Summit “The first of the events I spoke at was a Xerox Inkjet Summit at the Impika headquarters in Aubagne, France (near Marseille). Read more »

I Want to Print My Mobile Photos – A Windows Phone User’s Tale of Woe

Carrie Sylvester
 May 14, 2014

Recently, I have been thinking about printing photos from my smartphone. I have a high-resolution camera phone with some advanced photo features and had taken some pictures that I thought came out particularly well and a few I applied some artsy filters to as well. I wanted to see if they looked as good off screen. As if somehow Snapfish read my mind, the service introduced a promotion to get people printing photos from its smartphone app. The mobile-only promotion offers 100 free prints a month (4 x 6-inch), for one year, for mail delivery only.

Being a Windows Phone user, I went to see if there was a Snapfish app in the Windows Phone store. A search for “Snapfish” resulted in “We couldn’t find a match.” Then I searched for Shutterfly, which found a “Shutterfly” app, which was not from the official Shutterfly but from an unknown developer instead. I even dug far back in my photo print memory and looked up “York Photo” – no match. I expanded the search to “print photos” and a long list of apps came up but only a handful of recognizable brand names — Walgreens and Kodak Pic Flick being two of them.

Read more »

Antonio Perez and the Problem with Predictions

Jim Hamilton
 Jan 9, 2014

Watching Antonio Perez sound the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange yesterday reminded me of something I wrote about a year ago as part of InfoTrends’ On Demand Road Map of predictions for 2013:

“A key question moving forward is whether or not current Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Antonio Perez continues in his role or retires after many years of service and a grueling bankruptcy process. Kodak is now out from under the unsustainable financial burden of legacy promises made to employees and retirees when Kodak had more than 100,000 employees. It has a strong foundation of products, personnel, and future technologies. InfoTrends anticipates that once the bankruptcy proceedings and intellectual property (IP) sales are fully completed, Mr. Perez will move on and that Kodak will promote someone from within to take the leadership role.”

Well, I was wrong.

A year has passed and Read more »

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