Friday, April 20, 2012


When I started J-school things were still very analog. We used light tables to layout copy, the copy was sent to the printers fro printing, we used editing marks, typed on manual typewriters (there were a few electric ones), there was no spell check, shorthand was a mandatory course, we developed our own film and prints and my K-1000 was not digital.

The last time I used a typewriter was in the late 80's when I was working at CFSX in Stephenville.  The mounds of yellow canary paper and rolls of paper from the three new services would horrify the modern re-cycler. The click clack of the keys as you plugged each character onto the page. Just imagine, the work that went into every formatting every letter, report or manuscript. No spell-check, no save, no computer!

Of course there was something magic watching those words, paragraphs and letters appear. It was the same thing for developing film and photos. Watching images appear on phootpaper as the various chemicals washed across the page!  It was messier,  and much more time intensive, you worked hard for your reward. The instant reward from my iPad, computer or smartphone is just not the same.

I am not so nostalgic that I want to go back to those days, but  Jack Zylkin has invented a way to give you that nostalgic typewriter feel your current computer. He has taken the old-fashioned manual typewriter and married it to a USB output. The USB TypewriterTM features all the advanced functions of a modern keyboard, such as ctrl, alt, esc, and arrow keys.

If a truly retro keyboard, with all the bells and whistles turns your crank, this is the retrofuturistic baby for you!

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