.wwf: The Tree-Saving File Format
Maria Popova is a reader and a writer, and writes about what she reads on Brain Pickings (brainpickings.org), which is included in the Library of Congress archive of culturally valuable materials. She has also written for The New York Times, Wired UK, and The Atlantic, among others, and is an MIT Fellow. She is on Twitter @brainpicker.
The pipe dream of the paperless office has been around for a while, hoping to mitigate the massive paper waste generated by the corporate world – 1,410 unnecessary pages printed by the average employee every year, to be precise. Now, the WWF is tackling the problem with the most ingenious solution yet: A file format.
The new .wwf format is essentially a PDF that cannot be printed. The free installer is currently only available for Mac OS, but a PC version is coming soon. And even though the format has only been around for four days, three large international companies have already adopted it.
While the Save as WWF, Save a Tree campaign is clearly no panacea for the wasteful ills of corporate offices, it's still a clever awareness prompt and a conversation piece that will, at the very least, attach a little bit more prophylactic guilt to the Print button.
Maria Popova is the editor of Brain Pickings, a curated inventory of miscellaneous interestingness. She writes for Wired UK, GOOD Magazine, Design Observer and Huffington Post, and spends a shameful amount of time on Twitter.