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16-3-2017 03:19:29  #11

Re: Using a Character Recognition Progam on a modified typewriter

Rattle Tap wrote:

Yes, it is most certainly an indulgence but, we who type in the age of the computer are no stranger to self indulgence, are we ?
While this device could be made fairly economically it is certainly nothing more than a gadget for the typist that has it all and I never intended to take it to market. It's just something fun to think about.
.... snip ....
The original idea comes from the 'Steam Punk' art and adventure culture. I am not a part of that scene but I do like some of it, more from the sci-fi aspect.
Some of what I write is  gathered from the eccentric leaning of the genre and art much as the USB typewriter was developed from the early artists efforts.

Ah, I feel better about your idea now. I have mixed feelings about steampunk but on the whole appreciate the creativity. Same with flights of fancy.

Your idea might well work and be fun to implement in that spirit. Ignore my practical objections---dream and make the world a more interesting place!


17-3-2017 23:31:27  #12

Re: Using a Character Recognition Progam on a modified typewriter

"Steam Punk"
Yes, I probably shouldn't have used that title in association with this project.
The idea of having a camera looking over your shoulder while you type and then reporting what it sees to its big boss the computer, is already the makings for an intriguing story line.
The idea started as a joke or something of a sight gag to go along with the ( at the time) ridiculous notion not only of someone still typing but, hooking that typewriter up to their computer to act as the keyboard to further enhance their steam punk fantasy world experience. I quickly through a wrench in the works on one website by taking the position that the true steam punk computer would be more of a peripheral device used to augment the inventors existing typewriter.
No thought of obsolescence or wanton discarding of the tried and true type printing machine would ever have been entertained.
This turned into a firestorm of ideas that eventually turned into the device we are talking about here. 
Having taken the idea down from the shelf, thought about it, and put it back up there several time over the past few years and having watched consumer electronics plummet in price, I think the time is right for the 'Type Monitor' to see fruition.

During the development of the device all objections to practicality are thrown off. Nothing is ignored or shouted down as being absurd, impossible, too expensive, dangerous, crazy or just plain stupid.
One of my early ideas was to replace the platen with a clear poly carbonate cylinder so that the typist could still use the machine as normal but, the camera eye could also see what was showing at the print point. The camera objective was to be anchored to the right end of the typewriter body and the platen moved to the left as normal but, when the carriage was returned only the paper advanced and not the cylinder. Obviously the camera objective must remain at a fixed point with in the platen cylinder so another set of tension rollers are set in to the bottom of the platen roller to facilitate normal line advancement. Things did get expensive and more complicated but we did enjoy the task.
Another front runner idea was to inset, what could be considered a touch screen strip, along the full typing length of the platen ( or even a touch screen flexible enough to be wrapped around the entire circumference of the platen ) and then type on paper as normal but, also be able to detect and record the characters and spaces and so on.
There was talk of a typewriter that would print on a flat platen filled with a soft wax that could then be inked and transferred to paper or the wax platen would go into the 'Scripton 12- E analytical device' for compiling and decoding. Several versions of the Scripton were built by various people ( think of a dressed up flat bed scanner ) and much fun ensued. I don't see or hear of any of that stuff now but the Type Monitor still waits it's turn.   

Say on, good people.......   

     Thread Starter

11-1-2018 22:38:57  #13

Re: Using a Character Recognition Progam on a modified typewriter

I think a camera is too finicky and over complicated.  I’m sure it’s possible to design a non invasive devise that fits on the underarms like the USB conversion.  Otherwise, the simplest thing would be to scan a finished document through an OCR program.  I have had outstanding results with those free online programs, though my printer came preloaded with one.  Just make sure you’re a good typist and have clean slugs.

Typewriter collector and repair geek

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