“Future Directions of Non-Impact Printing Technologies” was the title of a panel discussion during the “First International Congress on Advances in Non-Impact Printing Technologies” in 1981. The 1981 status of non-impact printing establishes the context for the panelists' predictions. Evolution of the non-impact printing technologies and their applications from 1981 to 2001 are then compared with the panelists' predictions. Despite the fact that these predictions were not intended to cover a 20 year period, many were surprisingly accurate. Only a few differed from reality dramatically. The last section is entitled “Where To From Here?” The first part covers expansion of the present application range plus possible future applications. The second deals with a) technical advances in each non-impact printing technology that could improve performance and cost effectiveness and b) new non-impact processes under development or on the horizon plus basic science and technology areas that could have a significant impact on non-impact printing in the future.
Joseph Gaynor, "Predicted and Unpredicted Changes In Non-Impact Printing: 1981–2001" in Journal of Imaging Science and Technology, 2002, pp 292 - 299, https://doi.org/10.2352/J.ImagingSci.Technol.2002.46.4.art00005