An experiment.

· December 18, 2021

Is physical writing the way forward for me?

Yes, I know that my handwriting has a long way to go.

I have written about my disdain for my excess exposure to computers This is an experiment that aims at reducing my computer usage. All articles and essays I have written so far have been typed out. This meant I have been set in front of the computer for hours at a time writing down my thoughts. This article will be a little different. I am physically writing this one.

Right of the bat, I can notice a few differences. I write much slower than I type. Another difference is that the big prominent backspace key that I always fell back on while typing is missing here. I am using the old-school scratch-the-word-and-move-on method. I am hoping that the lack of a backspace key, along with my motor limitation will make me think a little more before I put my thoughts to (literally) paper.

I have also noticed that the absolute lack of distractions due to the analog nature of this process is making me feel good. I am not sure why. Maybe it is the novelty. I have written close to 3 pages in my newly opened “writing book”. My hands are in considerable pain. Feels like I am using muscles that haven’t been used in years. This first of my writings as a part of this experiment. Over the next few months, I want to further study the effects physical writing has on my thought, flows, and outputs. For now, my hand has had enough.

PS: I am planning to use OCR to scan this and convert it to text. If you are reading this it has worked.

PPS: This is me after running OCR. I am hoping one pleasant side effect of this exercise would be that my handwriting improves. I noticed some common patterns where the computer is not able to recognize my handwriting. A second pass on the output is definitely necessary, which is another bug that is actually a feature. It forces me to re-read and edit my writing, something that I rarely did.

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