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World moans the 'death' of typewriters

Last updated on: May 18, 2011 13:34 IST

World moans the 'death' of typewriters

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Shine Jacob in Kolkata

RIP Typewriters, please don't go..... !

Soon after the article came out on the last 500 office typewriters in the world of Godrej Prima brand, these became the favourite buzzword for the global media.

From newspaper articles to social networking sites, everybody is paying homage to the machine, while some are yet to come to terms with it.

While "RIP Typewriters" became a chorus word on social networking sites, some newspapers even typed its obituaries.

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"After years of sterling service, that bane for secretaries has reached the end of the line," mourned the Daily Mail.

"Typewriters may have stopped rolling off the production line, their mechanical chatter and precision components lend them an enduring enchantment, the Guardian wrote.

"We never expected such a response globally.

"All the international media, including the BBC, contacted us. Though it is not possible, the enthusiasm from the media and fans compelled us to think. . . why we stopped its production at all?

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"Why can't we start it again? However, with the increase in demand, we are evaluating various options to preserve the last pieces properly," said Milind Dukle, general manager-operations, Godrej & Boyce Manufacturing Company.

With the headline 'End of an era as last mechanical typewriters are sold' and quoting Business Standard -- which first did the story on April 17 with the headline 'Typewriters about to become a page in history' -- the Telegraph said, "Godrej and Boyce, of India, ceased production in 2009 and has now almost cleared its remaining inventory."
On the other hand, Channel 4 News paid tribute to the 'obsolete' machine by doing a complete postmortem of its history.

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Channel 4 reminded  us that Apple computers co-founder Steve Wozniak got his idea for the 1976 Apple 1 -- an early personal computer -- from a TV set and a typewriter.

Even some Indian newspapers have written editorials paying last tributes to the royal machine.

While some reports -- like Point of no return for typewriters by the Financial Times -- announced its demise, some reports have given hope to the world that it is not yet time to bid adieu to the archaic machine.

The National Business Review and the Washington Post report that a New Jersey-based company Swintec is still selling the machine.

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World moans the 'death' of typewriters

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However, some articles say that office typewriters  appear to be dead, though a few firms might be selling portable typewriters.

Social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter were buzzing with posts of typewriter lovers paying tribute as it became a hot topic.

Even some jokes were doing the rounds on the virtual world.

"Well, it's a good thing Obama got that birth certificate typed up before they shut down the last typewriter factory," said a Twitter post.

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While a majority of users in social networking sites posted links of articles, some even tried to read all the articles, "First Business Standard, then Times, London and Daily Mail. Now Mumbai Mirror and Star News," one of them said.

People also lined up their nostalgic feelings, with experiences of them and their predecessors.

Amid mourning, obits and debates, one thing is sure, perhaps a belated campaign can save the typewriter.

Or this may be the last chance to rehash heavy keys and carbon ribbons from the dustbin of history.



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