Mobility

10 glorious tech anachronisms: Where past and future rendezvous

Typewriter iPad app

Hanx Writer is a new typewriter app for the iPad, and it's currently one of the most popular apps on the iTunes store. The keys bang and there's hard returns and chimes when you reach the end of a line. It's free, but there are upgrades.

Image: Hanx Writer

About

Lyndsey Gilpin is a Staff Writer for TechRepublic. She covers sustainability, tech leadership, 3D printing, and social entrepreneurship. She's co-author of the upcoming book, Follow the Geeks.

7 comments
darylclose
darylclose

"Hear the beloved scratching sound" on the iPhone Turnplay record app?  Few of my records have scratches and most have none.  Regardless, a pop or scratch wouldn't be "beloved!"  I think that we can safely conclude that Ms. Gilpin is unacquainted with high-fidelity music on LPs, played with a decent cartridge and turntable.  Maybe she's thinking of a Victrola and shellac 78s?  An Edison wax cylinder?  Of course, if you're listening to an MP3 recording on your mobile phone with earbuds, you're in low-fi land all of the way, so it doesn't really matter. 

theo_butter
theo_butter

<GN_alert> "an smartphone app"?</GN_alert>

BrucePurcell
BrucePurcell

Milktape had a nice little cassette. But, can you could rewind your USB with a pencil?

JeffDeWitt
JeffDeWitt

The "Google cardboard" is nothing new, it's a modern version of a gadget that's been around since around the middle of the 19th century. A more modern version is the Viewmaster many of us remember from when we were kids.

Jay_H
Jay_H

Mostly fun novelties, but the flip case (if designed right) could possibly provide much better protection for the smartphone.

JimPeak
JimPeak

@darylclose Ah, darylclose, you're just missing the FUN of it all!  ;o) It's a trip through memory lane!  It's not the scratches per se- but rather, for me, it's the part of my life that they bring bubbling up from the long-lost memory...

I mean, when I visited Grandpa's farm, I still remember the smell of cow manure wafting in from the corral.  So, while I don't necessarily go out and buy Scratch-n-Sniffs of it to give out to friends, if I go to a Bed-and-Breakfast, and catch sight of a cow grazing out in a field, and a BIT of that old smell, it takes me back...

Also, I still remember, too, how my Apple ][ had a program that would show me which one of the RAM chips had decided to check out for lunch.  Once the program snitched on the offending chip, pulling the chip out and cleaning its legs, or just reseating it, would often make the world a happy place again.  Alas, I haven't had the chance to be such a hardware expert for years...

So, I can imagine using the word "beloved" for scratching- if I'd enjoyed listening to a particular album when I was dating back in high school.  Come to think of it, I *did* have an album like that- by Heart... it's kinda like wandering through an antique store on a rainy day- it's a chance to run into a memory of the past...  ;o)

Now, I totally agree- those past sounds and smells are NOT the kind of thing I'd want to fill my every day- and I really *like* the fact that my PC no longer struggles with glitchy memory.  But, I've seen "It's a Wonderful Life" at *least* once- if not twice- and it's possible that I even bought it on DVD to see it.  So, nostalgia can sometimes not only be glorious, but also profitable for the producers. 

Anyone want to chip in to fund a "Pet-Rock Resurgence" project??  ;o)

digilante
digilante

@Jay_H I agree, the clamshell/flip case for one's smartphone seems the most practical of those listed here - the rest of them leave me asking "why?"