I am with you Kevin, not only about the past but also in the present. My mother in law and others love prints, and it's nice to have some around to hang on the wall or stick on a dresser top. I'm talking 5x7 or 8.5x11", made from JPEGs, nothing fancy. But I sure have been frustrated for the past ten years or so by consumer printers and software. I will avoid naming brands...
Cheap plastic, 35 cents worth of ink in a $12 cartridge, lots of ink wasted self-cleaning, heavy push on same-brand paper, each manufacturer out to capture as much market share as possible without cooperating with the others, crappy software on all sides. I don't understand, for example why paper doesn't have a small mark on the backside that identifies what grade it is, with an industry standard for all the various types. I'm not talking the fancy stuff here, just what you find on the shelves of your local office supply store.
At the software level, Apple is fighting with Google so doing simple prints keeps getting harder - instead, they want you to use their cloud, make an album, automatically cluster things by faces, and so forth. My Canon software can't keep up with Apple's updates, so it gets harder to use for prints. Printing from wi-fi mostly only works within brands.
So I hope you can address some of these things. I want to spend photo time taking photos, and I want to make simple nice-looking prints from nice-looking JPEGs, not sitting for hours at a computer. Maybe you and Michael can get the ear of some of the industry types in your discussions.