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Georgia in Atlanta, Georgia listens on AM920 The Answer and asked: “I am frustrated by not being given an icon for the option to print articles online any longer. Why am I no longer able to print so easily?”
Georgia, there are two big reasons.
The first one is that printing is just not very popular anymore. Fewer people browse with computers, and fewer people still have printers at home.
If you ever go to a show where people can buy tickets online youll see just how many phones get scanned at the door, the same goes for airlines and boarding passes, or trains for that matter, or even coupons at shops. People just dont print much anymore because they dont need to.
The other reason is the main one: its hard to provide those buttons.
Old sites were extremely simple, they all had the same basic markup and were optimized for roughly the same resolution, so printing was pretty much adapting one look to a printed page format and moving on.
Modern sites are very complex, they typically use CSS or frontend frameworks to style what the user sees and how they see it. Things are hidden in the background, pages are made responsive to adapt to both small phones and large widescreen monitors and they rearrange to fit a different resolution, and different browsers need to be taken into account to ensure everything always looks like it should.
Adapting a page like that to a printed version would mean more custom CSS, and it would mean both catering to the different browsers in the market and staying on top of updates so the page always prints like it should.
That means a lot of work and a lot of cost, but most importantly, it means that an end user of a CMS (or, Content Management System) like WordPress or Drupal cant do it. Theyd need to hire programmers to build the printing logic and keep it working, which in the vast majority of cases is just not worth it.
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