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17 Facts You Didn’t Know About Photo Copiers

17 Facts You Didn’t Know About Photo Copiers

You’ve probably used a copier many times for school or office. Have you ever wondered how this innovative machine came to be?

It all started when Chester Carlson, a patent attorney, started looking for ways to make his job easier. He found his job painfully unbearable because of his arthritis. To think one man’s pain resulted in all this.

Here are a few more interesting facts you might want to know about the photocopier:

#1.  We’re already making waves with color copiers. While many people fear the invention of color copying might increase the existence of counterfeit money, this isn’t a possibility. The makers of the modern color copier have equipped the machines with a feature that will recognize an embedded pattern. So the copier will leave small dots on the copy of the money, rendering it useless.

#2.  Similarly, photocopies cannot be used to forge documents. Some people may want to use a color copier for forging a driver’s license. While it can copy most part of the license, a color copier will not be able to copy the embedded hologram in the driver’s license. Some college and university transcripts also have watermarks which will be highly visible in a copy of the document.

#3.  Interestingly, some countries even put restrictions on copying copyright material. The United States allows this type of copying under its principle of fair use. In some other countries like Canada, however, there’s a law that makes royalty payments compulsory for copies made at university copy machines.

#4.  While big companies like IBM and General Electric turned down Chester Carlson in the beginning, the machine turned out to be a huge success. In fact, the first copier demonstration was even aired on live T.V. This goes to show that you will eventually succeed despite your failures as long as you try and try again.

Did you know any of these facts before? It’s amazing how we often take some things for granted even though we couldn’t live without them. These aren’t the only facts about photocopiers and you can find out more in the photocopier infographic.



  1. I had no clue there was so much to know about copiers. I especially like how they started, necessity was the root of invention in this case. We do weddings up in Auburn, so we always have a ton of materials to prepare for them. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I didn’t realize there was so much to learn about copiers. It didn’t occur to me that some people would want to use a copier to photocopy things like a driver’s license. I think it makes sense that the copier would not be able to get the hologram on the license and that’s a good thing. Thanks for the facts on photocopiers!

  3. It’s amazing how some of our greatest inventions were rejected soon after their conception. It reminds me of Monopoly which was originally rejected by the Parker Brothers before it became one of the world’s most popular board games. It’s hard to imagine what business would be like today without photo copiers.

  4. I had no idea that used copiers could contain information left behind by the previous owner. I guess I just haven’t ever looked for it. However, you can bet that I will be wiping the memory of my copiers more often. However, I’m not entirely sure how this is done. Any suggestions for where I could get that information?

    • You can always remove the hard drive. You can do this by simply googling your machines make and models hard drive location, or you can call your local copier tech and they will be more than happy to preform a hard drive surrender. When a technician preforms a hard drive surrender, they will remove your hard drive and fill out a form in which you sign that states that your hard drive is no longer in your machine.

  5. It’s amazing how these ideas were at first rejected, and now almost everyone uses them. Great read, thanks for sharing!

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