I used to love Polaroid cameras. "Your picture in sixty seconds!" That was a great concept: take a picture, and the print is available to you almost instantly. Sometimes I would quickly snap two or three pictures: one for myself, and others to give to people who were in the scene. Of course, Polaroid pictures were expensive at nearly a dollar apiece.
Modern technology has now replaced the original Polaroid pictures. Indeed, millions of people now own digital cameras. I haven't seen anyone carrying a traditional Polaroid camera in years. It can be satisfying to see a new picture within seconds by looking at the tiny screen on the back of the camera. However, those tiny images are tough to see. If I drag a laptop computer along, I can display the pictures on the computer's screen within five minutes or so. Until recently, I had to go home or to a photo printing service when I wanted to make a printed picture.
I still miss Polaroid's concept of making a high quality print within seconds. I'd love to be able to take a picture of someone and then give that person a printed photograph within a minute or two.
This week I found a solution. I can now take a picture with my digital camera and make a high-quality printed photograph within minutes. I can give copies, even multiple copies of a single picture, to my friends and relatives within minutes after taking their pictures.
Best of all, the solution is rather inexpensive. The required hardware has a modest price tag, and the photo prints cost about thirty-two cents each.
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