Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Making & Typing in California

At a recent Maker's Faire in California, a loyal agent of the typewriter insurgency and her son brought a set of typewriters. Here's a succinct report:

More details: "It was fun to see a couple of kids discover typewriters and really take to it right away. One boy spent about an hour on 3 different typewriters, being really focused. A lot of notes to moms, dads and grandmas were written. One little girl wrote a beautiful note to her teacher whose husband just passed away. About 5 preteen girls were really into writing notes to their friends—like texting.
Out typewriters were right next to a station where the kids could tear apart computers. So many were fascinated to see and basically understand how the typewriters worked as opposed to computers which seemed more abstract."


  1. Abstract indeed! Nothing against you wonderful computer people (Dan Johnson, Brian Brumfield, others...) yall are wizards for sure and I am in awe. But typewriters are much more accessible initially. That was a huge part of the draw for me.

  2. man, you take typers anywhere and they're people magnets. always amuses me when people say they want to hold a type-in, but they're worried nobody will show up. we know you can set 5 typers on a table in any public space and draw a flash crowd of typists in minutes. :D

  3. Nice & Neat machines! :D

    Typewriters attract kids by nature. I am fascinated with typewriters since I was three years old (1994), when I used to visit with Mom government's offices and some banks, and I used to get hipnotized-like by the sound and the action of dozens of mechanical typewriters (all them were Olympias SG 3 from the 70's, 80's and early 90's, and sometimes a rare Olivetti Linea 98 from time to time). Impossible to get bored with such an action there. Now, offices and banks are so quiet that I get sleepy almost immediately after entering one. :3

    The first time when I saw a computer I was five years old (1996). They were square, huge, white, with a CPU that reminds one of a primitive Betamax VCR (but with diskette drive instead of the tape recorder), with a keyboard that looked like an electronic typewriter (electronic typewriters always awed me due to its complexity) and with a screen similar with a TV that only showed lots of letters on a black background (Mexico, my country, always have been outdated regarding high technology). I thought "they are so complicated, so hard to handle... and so expensive..." The first time I could have a computer was until 2000, at age 9, and I didn't know how to use it from scratch... And despite it already was old when Mom bought it (it was thought -for us- to be other more device, like TV or a refrigerator...), its prize was very high. That computer lasted just 15 years. :P

    On the other hand, I discovered there are typewriters working since the beginning of the 20th century. That's amazing indeed. It's like working with a piece of our history. Besides, what make typewriters awesome is the fact they are mechanical (or electro-mechanical), and you can appreciate the way they work (like vinyl records or tapes, or wind-up clocks)! :D

    What I love about mechanical typewriters is the fact that what you have been written doesn't need to be "saved on a disk". It remains on the paper. So, I can use it without electricity as much as I want. :P

    I bet those kids will have lots of fun with a typewriter at their homes. xD

  4. Always good to see the younger generation manning the typewriters.