Nostalgia for Obsolete Technology Meets DIY Culture in the USB Typewriter

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Jack Zylkin, an engineer, hooks antique typewriters up to modern computers and tablets to create functioning writing machines -- and then sells them on Etsy. It's almost a perfect storm of hipster obsessions. Vintage? Check. Handmade? Check. iPad? Check. Open source? Check. Et cetera. You might be tempted roll your eyes, but watch this documentary from Etsy's Handmade Portraits series and see if he doesn't convince you that there's something extremely satisfying about merging antique machinery with glossy, networked devices. The video was produced by Jenny Schweitzer, who provides more background on the project here.  

For a very brief visual history of the typewriter, check out this short archival clip from the Prelinger Archvie:

 

For more videos from Etsy, visit http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/video/.

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Kasia Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg is the executive producer for video at The AtlanticMore

Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg's work in media spans documentary television, advertising, and print. As a producer in the Viewer Created Content division of Al Gore's Current TV, she acquired and produced short documentaries by independent filmmakers around the world. Post-Current, she worked as a producer and strategist at Urgent Content, developing consumer-created and branded nonfiction campaigns for clients including Cisco, Ford, and GOOD Magazine. She studied filmmaking and digital media at Harvard University, where she was co-creator and editor in chief of H BOMB Magazine.

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