A Writer’s Best Friend?
Posted on July 8, 2019
The fears people have today about computers and the Internet, are the fears people had about electric typewriters in the early 1950s, and electronic typewriters in the early 1980s …
“The writer who taps out a story on this new electronic and sends it off to a publisher no longer can roll his compositions over in his head, embellishing it with the colors and rhythms of his mind’s eye – not exactly as he wrote it, perhaps, but always improving on it. His memory is beautifully fallible.
The electronic writer cannot sit there, imagining his story to be any better than it was when it left the machine. Because this machine remembers. And at the touch of a button it will print out this story exactly as it was typed, repeating without compassion every awkward phrase, each listless verb, all the flaws a writer might rework – if he could go out and intercept the copy he mailed to the publisher.
If such a machine falls into the hands of the wrong man, he will spend all year correcting himself.”
(Extract and image (above) from A Writer’s Best Friend? an article prompted by the release of the Hermes Top-tronic 41 and other “typewriters of the future” by John Lacy, Hartford Courant, Connecticut, 24th May 1981.)