Multi-column printing is how newspapers make the most efficient use of limited space. Instapaper, the previously mentioned bookmarking webapp, offers multi-column formatting for printing multiple articles.
Whether you’re saving news articles, blog posts, or other reading for later with InstaPaper’s browser bookmarklet or (seriously under-hyped) iPhone app, a trip to Instapaper.com and a click on the “Print Articles” link near the top offers a selection of multi-page printouts. Choose how many words and pages you want to fit into your digest—6,000 to 24,000 words, about 5 to 20 pages—along with font sizes and column counts, and you’ve got an easy way to catch up on your commute or plane ride without having to burn batteries.
Instapaper’s maker points out that the printing feature is “very” beta, and that it skips articles where it’s not confident of its success in singling out the meaty text. Still, in a test involving about 6 articles from different sources, Instapaper hit the nail on the head for multi-column translation.
Printing out articles just for the sake of having them in your hand isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, of course. So we’d suggest using a PDF printer, like doPDF for Windows or the built-in options in Macs and Linux systems, to transfer your digest to a Kindle or whatever you can browse PDFs with. Instapaper is a free text-saving service, requires an email address to register and allows for optional passwords.