The History of the Typewriter: Background information when reading Uncommon Type

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Uncommon Type

Some Stories

by Tom Hanks

Uncommon Type by Tom Hanks X
Uncommon Type by Tom Hanks
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  • First Published:
    Oct 2017, 416 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 2018, 416 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Matt Grant

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About this Book

The History of the Typewriter

This article relates to Uncommon Type

Tom Hanks' short story collection Uncommon Type, puts his love for typewriters on display. Hanks has a personal collection of over one hundred machines, made up of nearly every make and model ever put on the market. For those who grew up in the digital age, typewriters may seem all but extinct, a relic of a past era. But at one time, typewriters were as revolutionary and cutting edge as the latest laptop technology. The earliest progenitors of the typewriter believed they were creating a writing device only for the blind. They didn't foresee typewriters being needed by those who could see; after all, what were pens for?

Like most inventions, the creation of the typewriter wasn't a singular event; historians estimate that the typewriter was invented as many as fifty-two times. They were fashioned in every size and shape one could think of. An early model stood nearly eight feet tall. In the beginning, they didn't even contain keyboards or ribbons. Those modifications came much later....

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