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print website pageI personally hate printing content directly from the web – even if the page “has been formatted for printing.” This is because it seems web designers and corporations alike do not care about the environment or your wallet (ink is expensive!).

They wind up printing advertisements at the bottom of your printouts or some times even (gasp!) in the middle of your content.

I found a site via the MakeUseOf Directory this morning that has greatly improved my quality of printing. With this nifty little site you can either use their website or save a bookmarklet that lets you launch PrintWhatYouLike on the site you are viewing by clicking it.

Let’s go the easier route and go straight to PrintWhatYouLike and enter a URL in the center of the page.

I chose AskTheAdmin like so:

print web page to pdf

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And after hitting “start” I wound up with an editable page! Woot! Check it out:

print web page as is

Next I decided I wanted to print the home page but I did not want any graphics and I wanted to increase the font size for easier reading.

Guess what, that was all of 3 clicks of the mouse. Pretty damn awesome if you ask me. You can highlight individual modules on the site and remove them.This is a great way to customize that page for printing or a presentation…

print what you like

After selecting “remove all images”, some advertisements remained and with a click click here and a click click there I removed them and had myself a good printable page for reading in the can…

Thanks PrintWhatYouLike for making this a cleaner greener place :)

And finally here is what my clean AskTheAdmin page looked like:

Do you have any other websites, apps or tricks to save on printer ink?   Let us know in the comments!

  1. Emma
    February 16, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    WOW thanks for this tip, I was looking for an easy way to print and I too was finding it difficult when an advert just takes up all my black ink! Interesting what Peggy said, about it going full circle. I remember when typing a letter held more authority - now it's the other way round!

  2. Peggy
    October 2, 2008 at 8:19 am

    Too funny. Back when I first learned computers (1988) I used to send all my printing to a print document (.prn) and edit it before continuing it on to the printer. One of the things I hated most about the Mac OS and Windows was the loss of this capability. Twenty years later, we're back to editable print files! Huh. If I live long enough, pay phones might just resurface as well!

  3. Will
    October 2, 2008 at 7:02 am

    As a web designer/developer, I always advocate the use of print style sheets. If everyone used print stylesheets, we would not have the need for tools such as this one, and our web site visitors might be a little happier for it.

    The responsible web person would provide a print style sheet which formats everything nicely, hides any images that are not crucial to the meaning of the page, removes unneeded navigation links, turn any blue text links to black, and more.

    A favorite article of mine which covers this subject is alistapart.com/stories/goingtoprint/ Going to Print by Eric Meyer. He explains the strategy, implementation, and advantages of a print style sheet very well.

  4. BillyWarhol
    October 1, 2008 at 10:10 pm

    Fantastic! I was trying to Print Out my Testiclemoanials from Flickr (sadly using Word rhymes wif Turd) + what a Royal Pain + Huge waste o Paper* Amazing that 20 Years later MicroPOOP still can't get anything right*

    ;))

  5. Peter
    October 1, 2008 at 8:05 pm

    I've been using FinePrint for a while to save paper and toner. It lets up print multiple pages per sheet (2 works well in landscape) and it allows you to remove the graphics.
    It's super easy because you install it as a "printer" and it intercepts the print job before sending it to your physical printer. So you just print things like you normally would, you don't need to pick and choose what to print ahead of time. You can remove the pages you don't want/need to make the job smaller too.
    The trial is free and if you don't want to pay for it, you just get a small promo text at the bottom of each page. There is also a server version for use with shared printers.

  6. viking
    October 1, 2008 at 3:14 pm

    I use aardvark bookmarklet in firefox for the same thing..
    it is much more keyboard friendly

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