Opinion

Long lines and trying times: Swipe-to-Print causes grief in the library

Rachel Brustein
Staff Writer

After picking up my mailbox key for the year, I tested it out and found a small flyer in my box advertising Goucher’s new “Swipe to Print” policy. I

Student using new Swpie-to-Print system in the Library. (Photo: Rachel Brustein)

Student using new Swpie-to-Print system in the Library. (Photo: Rachel Brustein)

was less than thrilled that I was going to need to orient myself with a new form of printing. As if that was not enough for one day, when I checked my email later, I was informed that students were only getting 400 printer points for the semester, as opposed to the 500 we had last year. Although I was angry about the changes, I was not going to let my sophomore year be ruined by printing.
Within the next couple of days, I started to get emails from professors asking students to print out the class syllabi before the first day. I was faced with only one choice: to use the printers. When walking into the Info Commons section of the library, I noticed that the amount of printers had been reduced from four to two. Since classes had not started yet, it was not too crowded in the Info Com. But I knew that once the semester picked up, there would be insanely long lines near the two printers.

Students waiting for their documents to print out at the new Swipe-to-Print station in the Information commons. (Photo: Rachel Brustein)

Students waiting for their documents to print out at the new Swipe-to-Print station in the Information commons. (Photo: Rachel Brustein)

Once I tested out the system, I realized there is some point to it. After sending documents from the computer to the printer, they do not print immediately. Instead, one walks over to the printers with his or her OneCard, swipes it on the side of the printer, confirms what he or she is printing on the touch screen, and the papers come out. This makes sense because if someone is working on more than one document, he or she can send each of the documents to the printer at separate times, but print everything at once, so there is not a lot of back-and-forth from the computer to the printer. A downside to this system, pointed out to me by Chris Riley ’14, is that one can delete other people’s printing queues off of the printer, allowing him or herself to go first. Hopefully nobody will be a jerk, so please, do not do that. On the bright side, the staplers are right next to the printers, not by the main desk in the library, which is especially convenient!
Although “Swipe to Print” has already caused my peers and I much agony, it appears to be a good system. However, during busy times, having two printers instead of four will be a nuisance. I am anxious to see how the whole system works out amidst the busiest times in the semester.

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