Past meets future with the Qwerkywriter mechanical keyboard

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When I was a kid, I used my mom’s old Underwood typewriter to write my own stories and newsletters that only myself and my sister read. I loved that typewriter, fitting in a piece of paper, twisting the knob on the platen to position the paper, pressing down the keys and seeing the individual type bars raise, strike the inked ribbon over the paper as the carriage moved to the left and then when it reached the right side of the paper, a whack of the return bar moved the carriage back to the starting position and advanced the paper one line. The sound, feel and even smell of that old typewriter had me dreaming of being a writer when I grew up. These days I type on plastic keyboards that get the job done, but aren’t nearly as romantic as that old Underwood typewriter. If you also appreciate retro style, you might find the Qwerkywriter Kickstarter project very interesting. It’s not exactly a manual typewriter, but it sure looks like one, right down to the platen and carriage return bar (they are there just for show and don’t have a function – yet). The Qwerkywriter features 84 keys, custom typewriter inspired keycaps, an integrated tablet stand, and USB connectivity. It certainly looks very cool and is definitely more compact than the USB Typewriter conversion kit that we told you about almost 4 years ago. If this looks like something you’d love to have, head on over to the Qwerkywriter Kickstarter page and sign up to pledge $289. Hurry up though, the project ends on 7/3/14. The only problem I can see with this project other than the price is that you won’t receive your typewriter until August of 2015. I have patience, but not sure I have that much patience.

Thanks to Betty W. for the tip!

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11 thoughts on “Past meets future with the Qwerkywriter mechanical keyboard”

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  2. A part of me wants to set up the carriage return to enter carriage returns, while the ‘return’ key enters line feeds, and type text files that no OS would know what to do with.

    (For the insufficiently geeky – which is probably everyone – Windows, Unix, and old-style Macs all use *different* combinations of those two characters to designate ‘end of line’ in a text file.)

  3. While the styling certainly is retro, for real nostalgia they need to make the keys have the same travel and resistance of an old mechanical typewriter too. If you have to push them down less than an inch it’s just not the same 🙂

    1. @Rob did you see the link in this post to the USB Typewriter site that sells actual old typewriters that have been converted into USB keyboards? Or if you have an existing typewriter, you can buy a conversion kit.

  4. Donald Schoengold

    You can get a computer keyboard with mechanical keys and good tactile feedback which feel similar to the old IBM classic keyboards for a lot less than the price of this thing. In fact, you can also buy real IBM keyboards for less. A silly gadget in my opinion.

    1. @Donald I think you’re missing the point of this particular product. It’s not just the mechanics that make it desirable, it’s the whole look. I guess you have to be into the whole steampunk look to appreciate it.

  5. I love those little programs that give a keyboard the loud clickety-clack sound of the old time typewriters!
    (Warning: Not so good at night when you’re writing an email and someone near you is trying to sleep, and then you get yelled at for making a racket… but still….)

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