Hard copy

Updated: 04/01/2018 by Computer Hope

hardcopyA hard copy is any information that has been printed on paper. Hard copies allow data to be read without the need of a computer and are often required when someone needs to sign a document.

How is a hard copy produced by a computer?

A hard copy can be created using a printer (e.g., dot matrix printer, inkjet printer, laser printer, etc.) and a typewriter.

How is a hard copy put back into a computer?

To create a digital version of a hard copy (soft copy), an optical scanner or OCR is used. An OCR reproduction of a text document can be modified in a word processor.

Why would someone need to make a hard copy?

As more and more people move to digital and paperless solutions, there are not many reasons to make a hard copy. However, hard copies still find some uses which we've listed below.

  1. They are useful when a paper needs to be signed.
  2. They are needed for someone who doesn't have access to a computer or digital device.
  3. They are needed for reports that are to be turned in at school.
  4. They are needed when a print out for legal filing or taxes that requires a hard copy.
  5. They are needed for copies of receipts, proof of purchase, or completed service.

What's the difference between a hard copy and a soft copy?

A hard copy is physical, such as a tax form, printed document, or textbook. A soft copy is a digital version of these media that is kept on a storage device.

Output, Print, Print preview, Printing terms, Printout, Soft copy, Word processor terms