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Pre-declaring use of media for print job

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000199432D
Publication Date: 2010-Sep-02
Document File: 3 page(s) / 52K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

This idea describes an improvement to the method used to generate and submit a print job to a printer. The method involves performing resource based print job scheduling, at the printer, by enabling an application to pass information on required resources (specifically media) to the printer driver via the operating system. The data can then be passed to the printer, which then more can effectively schedule jobs, based on the required resources. An example of a resource in this idea are the media type required in the print job.

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Pre-declaring use of media for print job

This idea describes an improvement to the method used to generate and submit a print job to a printer.  The method involves performing resource based print job scheduling, at the printer, by enabling an application to pass information on required resources (specifically media) to the printer driver via the operating system. The data can then be passed to the printer, which then more can effectively schedule jobs, based on the required resources.   An example of a resource in this idea are the media type required in the print job.

As currently implemented, when printing from Microsoft Windows ® or a similar environment, a printer must typically (but not always) wait until an entire print job has been received before it can determine all of the sizes and varieties of media needed to print a job.  It is much more efficient for the printer to begin printing the job as soon as it receives the first page, but there are several risks. One is that the media could change mid-job and not all of the required media will be available.  When that occurs, the printer cannot complete the job as specified unless it stops and prompts for the required media. That may prevent the printer from printing any other jobs until the media fault is resolved. It may also be necessary to know all of the media sizes in advance in order to select appropriate feed direction (short edge feed vs. long edge feed) in order to permit mixed-size jobs to be oriented properly to enable selected finishing options, such as stapling.

This idea describes an improvement to an operating system (OS), such as Microsoft Windows ®.  The OS would provide a means by which applications may provide additional optional information about the media required for a print job at the time an application initiates a print job.  The idea also suggests that the application pass that data to the print driver at that time. That data, when available, would enable the printer to much more efficiently schedule jobs.  The efficiency arises by avoiding down-time when printing due to required media not being loaded in an input tray even when beginning to print as soon as the first page arrives across the network.  The additional information can also be used to solve problems regarding finishing.  The key piece of data is whether a job uses more than one kind of media.  Another valuable piece of data is the total number of pages, when known.  This idea adds only a small burden, but offers a great opportunity for improvement over the current state.

Background:

Before an application can print, it needs to select a printer and specify the initial print settings such as paper size, duplex, stapling, etc.  Applicable features, such as paper size, can be changed later on a page-by-page basis throughout the job. Other features such as stapling apply to the job as a whole.   Applications initiate a print job by calling an API called, StartDoc(). The only argument to...