My Dad was an administrator. The tools of his trade were: mechanical pencils, scratch pads ("Foolscap" if you're from Canada, like me) and typewriters.
As a little kid I'd walk into his home office and past the typewriter desk. It didn't dominate the room; it was just for typing. Each time he used it I'd think, "I wonder if I'll ever be able to type that fast?"
The first typewriter I ever used was the kind with the striking keys. Remember those? If your typing style was sloppy the keys would get all jumbled up. That was frustrating. You'd have to stop typing and free up the keys just to keep going. And then clean your hands of the red and black ink.
I was glad when my Dad brought home the IBM Selectric. Now that was a typewriter. Fast, modern, sleek. One of the finest pieces of
office equipment available on the market...in 1973. Not only did the keys no longer stick, it used a ball instead (correctly known as elements), but it had correct mode. Just hold down the correction key and retype the incorrect letter. Unheard of! What will they think of next? Oh, it also had almost 50 different fonts.
I'm typing this article on a wireless keyboard that is attached to my laptop via Bluetooth®
. While I would never choose to go back to earlier "typing technology" I guess if I'm honest, I miss the old experience. Ribbon ink on my fingers. Carrying the behemoth from one spot to another straining my back from the effort. The satisfying feel of an electronic, mechanical response to my keystrokes. The amazing sense of accomplishment when an entire page rolled out with no typos!
Ah, those were the daze. Or is that deys? No, I've got it, da
. But if you tell your kids what a typewriter is...they won't believe you.
—Blake Williams · Executive Director