Daily Wisdom: Typewriters

Typewriters. The click and clang of a long forgotten obsolete technology. The smell of the ink as it is impressed upon paper. The little compact Brother typewriter I have sits on a moveable sliding shelf in the desk of my main work area. The work area is adorned with a modern Brother inkjet printer and a sleek and shiny iMac.

Technology has moved on from the humble Typewriter. Trends indicate that there will be less and less paper in use as the echelons of the digital age continue to encroach on the past. Is there something we can learn the past though? The answer is yes.

Our modern computing technology is a digital equivalent of the humble typewriter. The iPad that I am writing this post on is paired with a bluetooth keyboard. The technology may be different, but the concept is exactly the same. The keyboard I am using still makes a clacking noise. Not the same as the loud percussive bursts from my trusty old typewriter. Clacking noises just the same. And the feel of the paper between my finger tips…

All said and done, my portable typewriter is not so portable. It weighs near a tonne when lugged around for any great length of time. The iPad that I use is far more than portable. I can sit or stand anywhere and begin working within moments of startup. And that’s one of the main advantages of digital technology. It can change how we work, how we create, and how we interact with the outside world.

Both devices represent the pinnacle of communication during their respective eras. Only one will survive the transition into the modern post-industrial age and the ever encroaching technocracy that is modern life.

(C) 2014 by Christopher McLeod for Aflatmajor.com

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