Take Your iPad Old School with ITypewriter Accessory

| Product News

Time to kick it old school, and we’re not talking The Offspring, flannel, and Home Alone, the usual era for “old school” computer stuff. Nope, we’re going to keep going, skip over Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Poison, and Cabbage Patch Kids, and go all the way to polyester, The Jam, and Farah Fawcett*. Behold iTypewriter!

iTypewriter

iTypewriter Prototype

For the kids, this is a “typewriter” keyboard accessory for the iPad. Google “typewriter” if you need to. Go ahead, we’ll wait…

OK, for the elderly who might be reading, that’s an “iPad” where the paper would normally go. Ask your children or their children if you need to know more. Maybe they’ll Google it for you.

As noted in the caption above, the iTypewriter isn’t a shipping product, but rather a “project.” Its creator, Austin Yang, has posted a YouTube video demonstrating the device, and we thought it was super awesome.

Wait, that’s not entirely true. This reporter thought it was super awesome, but one TMO staff member who requested anonymity said that it was “just insane,” and the product of “a sick mind.”

That sort of bifurcated dichotomy seems to have taken root on YouTube, too, where comments that aren’t dedicated to trashing or defending Apple (you know, because that’s relevant) are divided between “this sucks” and some form of “this is cool.”

There are tons of keyboard accessories for the iPad, but this one is the only device that is so retro it’s more like it’s sub-retro.

“Instead of stroking on the screen with no feedback, this product can reflect a strong haptic feedback,” Mr. Yang wrote on his site. “User can experience the physical strength transfer from the keypad and the movement of each key.”

Check out the video. The demonstrator (presumably Mr. Yang) types frustratingly slowly, but it’s still cool. At the right place, we’d buy one!

iTypewriter Project Video

[Via NBC]

*With apologies to Paul Weller for the company we lumped him with.

Comments

geoduck

Put me in the “That is unbelievably cool” column with an added “Gotta get me one”. Imagine a Steam-punk version.

BurmaYank

I love it - (YES!  smile “unbelievably cool”! smile )

Bryan Chaffin

Oh yeah, a steampunk aesthetic would send this concept out of this world!

Oz

Uh, the keys aren’t Qwerty that’s why he’s typing slow. Why doesn’t someone come up with a bluetooth keyboard like this without the physical screen touch?

BurmaYank

“Why doesn?t someone come up with a bluetooth keyboard like this without the physical screen touch?”

I’m sorry, Oz, but if you can’t already see how losing the keyboard’s touch screen’s physical character strikers would utterly destroy all the wonderful magic of it, I think any attempt at trying to explain it would only be a mutually frustrating waste of our time & attention.

Oz

Sorry, Burma, didn’t ever say that this wasn’t totally cool. Just merely suggesting an alternate product that would also be cool but slightly more functional. Qwerty and no missed character hits.

geoduck

No reason you couldn’t do both.

A case like this with the iPad setting where the paper sets.

You hit they keys and the bluetooth keyboard enters the character.

The arm flips up and goes to the screen as if it were typing.

Alternatively a software app would animate the flying
typewriter arm and adds the *whack* of it hitting the ‘paper’ on the screen.

Either way you get the QWERTY keyboard and the flying keys.

The only thing missing is the carriage to move the iPad back and fourth while you type. Maybe with a silver return arm and a bell.

1stplacemacuser

Uh, the keys aren?t Qwerty that?s why he?s typing slow. Why doesn?t someone come up with a bluetooth keyboard like this without the physical screen touch?

The keys are qwerty.  They’re one-to-one with the location of the iPad’s key location.  It’s not like the original typewriters with the half-shell arrangement of keys (or the ball version from IBM).

1stplacemacuser

It is missing the return lever.  Other than that, supercool.

DrDL

With a bit of work on making it qwerty and a bit more retro I’d be adding this to my wish list. It is so wonderfully and totally unnecessary, I love it.

Bryan Chaffin

It is so wonderfully and totally unnecessary, I love it.

Me sentiments exactly!

As noted above, especially with a Steampunk aesthetic. smile

furbies

It just worries me how hard the little rubber ends are slapping/smacking the iPad screen.

iJack

Uh, the keys aren?t Qwerty that?s why he?s typing slow.

When was the last time you saw a him with nails that good?
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Bryan Chaffin said: OK, for the elderly who might be reading, that?s an ?iPad? where the paper would normally go.

Hey, up yours Chaffin! I’ll bet you thought that was funny. Well, it wasn’t. I for one, expect an apology.

barryotoole

She might land a secretary’s job with those beautiful hands, but not her typing speed.

I want one too!

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