I was wrong!! Paper killed the Paper star

In one of my earlier rants Pocket PC troubles I was venting out my troubles with my Pocket PC device. I am beginning to think that I was wrong.

My handwriting still sucks, but during the last few weeks since I adopted a Paper based system, it has definitely improved and seem to have more control on my wrist and fingers now.

Last week, it was one of those days when nothing goes right – I forgot my desk keys, and my notebook(paper-based) and pen all locked up inside it, and I need to run into a meeting. What the hell ! I just decided I will just walk in with my Pocket PC, just in case, my boss and others there felt I was being too casual about the meeting.

So I switch on my Pocket PC, and, drew the stylus out of its slot, and decided to write down the name of the song ringing in my ears and head. And Lo Behold ! I got the whole sentence recognized correctly barring a few letters. BTW, the sentence was ……… “Can I Play with Madness!” – a great poppy Iron Maiden song from the excellent album Seventh Son of a Seventh Son 

And there you go, I just launced into it, and started taking notes like I did never before – Partly excited that I finally got the Pocket PC to recognize my handwriting, but most excited because my handwriting was back !!!!!

The few weeks of Paper-based management worked its wonders, and atleast it helped regain a skill, which had eroded alarmingly over the past few years.

Now, will I abandon paper ?? No, definitely not. I realized that handwriting is a skill that is much too valuable even in today’s so-called paperless office –

I remember this Chinese Kung-fu movie, in which one of the main characters is writing Chinese characters in sand, with his wrist, using a 4 feet long stick, to help him exercise his wrist, and effectively help him perfect his swordplay skills. Wow! never seen a better connection between calligraphy and swordplay.

I have learnt a lesson from this experience – Nurture your handwriting habit.

If you cannot think of anything to write on paper, just start writing down about everything you hate – I usually pick names of songs, movies, actors, villians, books anything – If I don’t get anything to write, I just try to draw imitations of the album covers in my heavy metal music collection – Yeah Baby ! Heavy Metal music has got the best album covers in the business, especially the European Power Metal stuff – I just could not believe I was able to come up with the names of around 30 movies that I wished had never been made. Someday I will post that list 🙂

And that should keep your wrists and fingers and nimble enough to work with tablets and Pocket PCs with great handwriting recognition technologies.  What a waste it would have been for me to throw away something that I am finding so useful now. With its voice recording, and handwriting recognition, I think it is really a powerful too – But I still can’t get over the feeling that it is still too small for my taste, but hey, any bigger it won’t fit in my Pocket you see !

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2 Responses to I was wrong!! Paper killed the Paper star

  1. Hi Murali,
    Interesting post. I’m glad your foray back to paper brought success with the ‘handwriting recognition on the PocketPC’

    I blogged a couple days ago on a similar subject i.e. that technology and sustained computer use can be detrimental to handwriting. However the conclusion I made, feverously defending a paperless lifestyle, is that a TabletPC successfully allows one to remain paperless while sustaining an acceptable level of handwriting practise (or as you so eloquently put it ‘nurturing the handwriting habit’ :o) )

    I can’t help thinking that the feeling you have that your ‘PocketPC is too small for your taste’ just isn’t going to go away. I’ve never been comfortable scribing on a PDA but I tend to think there’s a glimmer of light courtesy of UMPCs. Ok so a UMPC is still a little too big to fit in the pocket and they are still way overpriced but I think they have potential as an ‘in between’ solution.

  2. muraliblogs says:

    Hi Robert,

    That is an interesting site you have got there. I have never used a TabletPC myself, but I can definitely see the advantages over a PocketPC when it comes to handwriting. It has more screen space, that would really be easier and more appealing.
    I also agree on the UMPCs, once they become more affordable.

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