How to Print from a Chromebook

While many of us have strived to move into an all digital world, printing is still a necessary evil for most people. If you’re a Chromebook user, printing can be a bit of a pain, but thanks to some recent changes by Google, it just got a little bit more convenient.

Traditionally, Chromebooks have relied exclusively on Google Cloud Print for all printing needs. The biggest problem there is that not all printers are Cloud Print ready, which can cause issues for anyone trying to print from a Chromebook. Fortunately, Google recently added a way to add local printers to Chromebooks—it’s not as simple as it is on other PCs, but at least it’s something. We’ll cover both local and cloud methods in this post, so you’ll be covered either way you go.

How to Use Google Cloud Print on a Chromebook

Before we get into how to add your printer to Cloud Print, l want to note that this assumes you’ve already gone through the necessary steps to set your printer up on your network. Each manufacturer is different, so I’ll direct you to their instructions to learn how to get yours set up.

If Your Printer Is Cloud Ready

If your printer is cloud ready, you can easily do everything you need to do from your Chromebook. To find out if your printer is cloud ready, jump over to this list and look up your particular model.

There are two different generations of cloud ready printers: version 1 and version 2. These versions are noted on the Cloud Ready Printers page—if it doesn’t have a “V2” indicator, then it’s a V1 printer. V2s are easier to set up, so we’ll tackle that first.

Once you’ve confirmed that your model is V2 cloud ready, you can add it to your Chromebook by doing the following:

  1. Open the browser, type chrome://devices in the address bar, and press Enter.
  2. Find your printer in the New Devices menu and click the “Manage” button next to it.
  3. Click “Register” to confirm your printer.

Back on your printer, it should ask you to confirm that you want to add it to…

A Mechanical Laser Show with 3D-Printed Cams and Gears

Everyone knows how to make a POV laser display — low-mass, first-surface mirrors for the X- and Y-axes mounted on galvanometers driven rapidly to trace out the pattern. [Evan Stanford] found a simpler way, though: a completely mechanical laser show from 3D-printed parts.

The first 10 seconds of the video below completely explains how [Evan] accomplished this build. A pair of custom cams wiggles the laser pointer through the correct sequences of coordinates…

How to Stop Two-Side Printing From Being the Default in macOS

Two-sided printing is great in theory, because it uses less paper for multi-page documents. It’s also frustrating when you forget to turn the option off when you don’t need it.

macOS makes two-sided printing the default for supported printers. It’s the ecologically friendly thing to do, we suppose—at least, in theory. We’ve personally thrown out more than a few documents because of this default. Many of the things we bother to print these days—airline or event tickets, for example—need to be on their own pages. Often, we’ll quickly try to print some tickets, see that they’ve come out two-sided, swear under our breath, and then re-print the tickets one-sided.

Sure, it’s easy enough to turn off the “Two-Sided” option in the print dialog each time you print, but it’s also easy to forget. The good news is that you can change the default setting. That way, your printer will print one-sided pages unless you turn the “Two-Sided” option on. Changing this default requires opening the Terminal, and then accessing a browser-based user interface. It’s a bit convoluted, but don’t worry: it’s not as hard as it sounds.

Step One: Enable the CUPS Browser Interface

Printing on macOS is handled by CUPS, an open source system developed by Apple. Users can change CUPS settings with a browser-based interface, but this interface is disabled by default. To enable it, open…

Tips of the Week: Gluing Hinges, Organizing Hardware, and Screen Printing with Wood Glue

Another week of tips and techniques that Make: readers will hopefully find useful. Don’t forget to share in the comments below any tips that you’ve come across in your travels. This week’s column was almost entirely submitted to me by Make: readers and staff members. Keep ’em coming, folks!

Organizing Tiny Hardware

Make: reader brucej offered this in response to a tip in “Tips of the Week” for 6/2/17 about poking small screws through cardboard when disassembling something to keep your hardware all straight: “The screws/cardboard thing is a good trick but is only good for larger screws and such. For things with truly teensy screws (like laptops, cameras, etc.) I have a piece of convoluted foam (aka eggshell foam) like this that I use. You can drop screws into the divots and they’ll stay there. Even better, they’ll stay in place while you stick your fingers in another divot to retrieve them. I haven’t lost a single screw working on laptops since I started using this. It was free out of the box for some piece of equipment we ordered.

Here’s a great one from Izzy Swan. In a recent video where he builds a gorgeous wooden box for a wooden watch, he uses CA glue and an activator to temporarily hold on hinges before gluing. In the video, also note how he sprays down the activator first and then he glues and places the hinges.

The Right Tip for the…

Self-assembling Polymers Support Silicone 3D Prints

We all know what the ultimate goal of 3D printing is: to be able to print parts for everything, including our own bodies. To achieve that potential, we need better ways to print soft materials, and that means we need better ways to support prints while they’re in progress.

That’s the focus of an academic paper looking at printing silicone within oil-based microgels. Lead author [Christopher S. O’Bryan] and team from the Soft Matter Research Lab at the University of Florida Gainesville have developed a method using self-assembling polymers soaked…

Shapeways Offers Access to New HP 3D Printing Technology

Shapeways has established themselves as a leader in on-demand 3D printing services. With a community of over 40,000 shops and more than 600,000 items that you can browse, customize, and purchase right now, their impact on the market makes them a great place to try new materials and methods of 3D printing. Today, Shapeways has announced that they are teaming up with HP to give their community access to HP’s new Multi Jet Fusion 3D printing technology.

When a major company like HP enters the 3D printing market by announcing a new way of printing, it can create quite a buzz, and for the past year since announcing their new system, the industry has been following closely. Multi Jet Fusion promises fast, multi-material, multi-color, production ready parts. While Shapeways will only be starting to offer parts in one material and two finishes, more options will be coming down the road. This first offering is…

Scientists 3D Printed Cheese

These days, you can 3D print anything from a house to your breakfast. And as 3D-printed pizza becomes a thing, food scientists are examining what exactly happens when you print yourself some cheese.

A recent study in the Journal of Food Engineering explores how 3D printing affects the structure of processed cheese. How gross would 3D-printed Velveeta nachos be? A bevy of researchers from University College Cork in Ireland decided to find out.

They melted a commercially available processed cheese (think American cheese, not cheddar) and put it through a modified 3D printer that printed the cheese out at either a fast or a slow speed. The cheese was printed out into cylinders that were then cooled for 30 minutes and put in the refrigerator for a day. After that 24-hour refrigeration period, the researchers took the cheese out of the fridge to check its texture and chemical structure.