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An ode to ink

Mary T Moore
flickr creative commons

From ancient scrolls to modern toner cartridges, ink (in one form or another) has been around for millennia. And while we may take it for granted now, for much of that time, it was a precious and coveted substance.

Ink makers closely guarded their recipes; spy agencies developed secret, invisible ink formulations; and even now, billions are spent to create the perfect printer inks.

This hour, we look back at the history of ink and ask whether its heyday might be coming to a close.


  • Ted Bishop - Author of Ink: Culture, Wonder And Our Relationship With The Written Word
  • Kristie Macrakis - Author of Prisoners, Lovers, & Spies: The Story of Invisible Ink from Herodotus to al Qaeda
  • Kyle Wiens - Founder of iFixit

Join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.

Colin McEnroe, Jonathan McNicol, and Chion Wolf contributed to this show, which originally aired August 9, 2017.

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Josh is a producer for WNPR's talk shows. He has produced for Where We Live and is currently producing for The Colin McEnroe Show.
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