August 23, 2009

1 comment:

  1. This is a very thoughtful post, full of ideas. I've thought about this a lot in the last decade, as I've not only typewritten, but I've also written in fountain pen; processed film and paper negatives in my darkroom; used an abacus for mundane daily calculations, etc.

    I don't see it as specifically choosing a harder way over an easier way; I think it more has to do with a preference for the tactile, the physically tangible; the real. I think there is in us an inner desire to commune with the essential materials of our media; we are like craftspeople who've been separated from our tools and materials for too long, and have a longing to return to the primacy of Man the Toolmaker. I think it is genetic, primordial, this desire to manipulate and handle and do things manually.

    I peruse the camera discussion forums; there's lots of talk these days about Leica releasing a full-frame digital rangefinder camera. And lots of talk about the Panasonic G1 and Olympus E-P1 micro-four-thirds digital cameras. People like manual rangefinder cameras, but want the convenience and feature set of digital. They still desire something substantial in their hands that they can manipulate. Man the toolmaker. Prehensile thumb. Hmm, sounds like another blog topic...thanks for your post, very insightful and thought-provoking.