Nostalgia for Obsolete Technology Meets DIY Culture in the USB Typewriter

Jack Zylkin, an engineer, hooks antique typewriters up to modern computers and tablets to create functioning writing machines. 

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/.

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

Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg joined The Atlantic in 2011 to launch its video channel and, in 2013, create its in-house video production department. She leads the development and production of original documentaries, interviews, and other video content for The Atlantic. Previously, she worked as a producer at Al Gore’s Current TV and as a content strategist and documentary producer in San Francisco. She studied filmmaking and digital media at Harvard University.

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. Who cares about youth? James Hamblin turns to his colleague Jeffrey Goldberg for advice.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. James Hamblin turns to a colleague for advice.

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

Video

Pittsburgh: 'Better Than You Thought'

How Steel City became a bikeable, walkable paradise

Video

A Four-Dimensional Tour of Boston

In this groundbreaking video, time moves at multiple speeds within a single frame.

Video

Who Made Pop Music So Repetitive? You Did.

If pop music is too homogenous, that's because listeners want it that way.

More in Video

Just In