Update No.2


This is the second update in the interim between official series posts, intended as both an update on the progress of the series as well as a general update.

In series news, I am learning a lot, and I hope that you do too when I finally finish it. A major revision is needed to the title, though… instead of being “The Rise and Fall of the Video Game Industry, 1960-1983” it will have to be titled “The Rise and Fall of the Video Game Industry, 1947-1983”. I had no idea that the beginnings of the industry were as far back as 1947, but there you have it. I have also quite accidentally found a connection to Australia that while brief might be of interest to Mr. Robert Messenger of Oz Typewriter, and if you aren’t reading his blog you should be. He does a lot of well-researched and interesting posts surprisingly frequently for their level of detail, and it really is a very interesting read. The address is http://oztypewriter.blogspot.com.

In non-series news, I have a few things to say. Firstly, I’m now on Twitter as @T1peM0nkey! I originally did this to follow @NewsTypewriter, which is an apparently sentient 1949 Royal KMG from the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper that has an amazing sense of humor!

Secondly, my collection of phonograph records just grew in a not-so-insignificant way. Five new LPs and six new 78 box sets, apparently with at least three disks in each. The 78s are all classical music since I decided that I didn’t have enough classical.
I finally found a copy of Walter Lord’s book ‘A Night To Remember,’ a factual account of the sinking of the RMS Titanic from a passenger, Mr. Lord himself. This book was made into a film in the black and white silent movie era and was very popular. Which reminds me that I’m thinking about doing a series on the Titanic next April…. any thoughts?

I added ‘The Towering Inferno,‘ the classic 1974 Irwin Allen disaster movie, to my VHS tape collection, and I’m beginning to seriously consider LaserDisks (LD). The only thing really holding me back is the fact that I don’t have a LaserDisk player, but that hasn’t stopped me from dipping my toes in with two purchases: The Abyss (1989) and Twister (1996).

And here’s some irony for you…. I have been practicing for the Polt/Brumfield showdown in October, and in the course of that have found a good tool to find practice material. The internet! So I find myself sitting at my typewriter with my digital copy holder, working on retyping articles and the like. How anachronistic can you get?

I hope to return soon with ‘RISE OF THE REGIME, EP.1: The Rise and Fall of the Video Game Industry, 1947-1983’ sometime in this following week. The post will be a pretty long one for this blog, and will be as illustrated as I can make it – finding images and getting permission to use them is the one big worry that I have about this series. If I don’t personally have that particular computer or console and can take photos of it, I’ll either have to link to images or put them on the blog (which is choice). That requires permissions, and I am working on finishing the research so that I can find appropriate images and get to work on said permission requests. Until next time, typosphere!

Poll Results, Pinball, and Check Writers

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Vintage video game systems on carpet
From left to right, top to bottom: Atari 2600, SEGA Genesis, Nintendo NES, Nintendo GameBoy (x2), Mattel Electronic Football.
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Vintage check writers arranged on carpet
From upper left, clockwise: Protectograph Check Writer, Monarch Junior Stamping Machine, F&E Lightning Check Writer, F&E Check Writer.
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The website for ‘Special When Lit’: http://www.specialwhenlitmovie.com
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1929 Royal Portable typewriter on glass table.
This is the machine I plan to challenge Richard Polt with at Herman Price’s.
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The Typewriter Insurgency Manifesto is here: http://typewriterinsurgency.webstarts.com
Vintage game consoles
From left to right, top to bottom: Atari 2600, SEGA Genesis, Nintendo NES, Nintendo GameBoy (x2), Mattel Electronic Football.


Vintage Commodore computers
From left to right: Commodore 64, Commodore Plus/4, Commodore VIC-20.

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Commodore 64 microcomputer
The Commodore 64 computer; the best-selling computer of all time.
Commodore 64 microcomputer manual
Did you ever wonder why I named my ‘floppy disks’ the way I did? Here’s your answer!

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Commodore 64 box
64 kilobytes of memory was astounding when this computer came out.

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Commodore 64 Technical Specifications
The technical specifications are listed on the side of the box.
Commodore 64 build sticker
The ‘P’ in the serial number means that it was manufactured in Pennsylvania.

-1+7, Touch-Typing LPs, Typing Challenges and A Green Royal P

-1+7, Touch-Typing LPs, Typing Challenges and A Green Royal P
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IBM Selectric typewriters
Pictured: Some of the Selectrics received.
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Touch Typing Made Simple - Instructional LP and Booklet
Touch Typing Made Simple
Smith-Corona 10-Day Touch Typing Course LPs and Booklet
Smith-Corona 10-Day Touch Typing Course
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But since this was written, I now know the answers to most of these questions. Just a heads up.
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National Novel Writing Month 2013 Participant
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Floppy disks
Speaking of floppy disks… Maybe I should set up a ‘floppy disk’ for my floppy disks. I think I have 91 of them at present, all for Commodore 64.
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Corroded IBM Correcting Selectric II
Mousey’s full glory. I’ve got more shots like this that have more detail and will be shared on the first official Mousey post.
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1929 Royal Portable typewriter
My new 1929 Royal Portable in black/green duotone. Strangely enough I am getting attached to the highlighted ‘H’ key. It adds a nice quirk to it.
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The Golden-Touch Variations

Alright. This post is rather cobbled together, full of pictures of several different Underwood Golden-Touch typewriters. Each one of these machines has something that is different than mine, be it colors, layouts, or decals. First, the advertisements:
Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter Magazine AdvertisementUnderwood Golden-Touch Typewriter Print Advertisement
The ads above clarify that ‘Golden-Touch’ refers to how light the touch is. BAH! I object! Mine may have been tuned to someone’s liking, I’ll admit, but mine does NOT have a light touch. Golden, yes. I love the touch on mine. But light? Not so much. See my Golden-Touch review for clarification.
Getting back on track though, see that the machines in both the above ads are blue, yet still manage to have keyboard variations. The one above has an all-white, and the one below is all-grey. The switches on the faces are also white and grey, respectively.

Here are pictures of mine, taken for the Typewriter Database:

1958 Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter1958 Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter1958 Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter

Grey with an all-grey keyboard. Pretty office-like in my opinion. Yet Michael Clemens‘ machine is robin’s egg blue with the all-grey keyboard. You can view that one here. Who was Underwood marketing to? Offices or people? I’ve seen red Golden-Touch typewriters in the ads, so clearly some of them are colorful.

The earliest machine that isn’t that different from the Golden-Touch is the Underwood SX150.  These were early 50’s, and looked almost exactly the same, but with five differences. Firstly, up-and-down switches instead of twist switches. Secondly, a huge globe logo. Thirdly, the touch control is on the right side. Fourthly, the flip-down faceplate isn’t as concave as the newer ones. Fifthly, an Underwood decal on the paper table. Other than that, pretty much identical.

Underwood SX-150 Typewriter
These pictures come from this auction listing.
Underwood SX-150 TypewriterUnderwood SX-150 TypewriterUnderwood SX-150 Typewriter
Another thing that I saw was the keyboard color differentiation. All of the edge keys are black, but every other key is grey.
Following in that vein is the following Golden-Touch, which also has the same kind of color separation in its keys. This one has the same greys that mine does, yet has a large swath of white in its keyboard.
Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter
Below is a Golden-Touch with a really odd color separation. The whole keyboard is white, with the exceptions of the tab key and spacebar. The switches on the face are grey as well! Another thing that this machine has that the other new ones shown thus far don’t, is a decal logo on the paper table:
Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter
These pictures are from this auction.
Underwood Typewriter Paper Table DecalWhat gives, Underwood? I would like that decal, too! Well, it doesn’t end there. The color that I wasn’t expecting at all was a bizarre green:
Underwood Golden-Touch TypewriterUnderwood Golden-Touch TypewriterUnderwood Golden-Touch TypewriterWhat gets me about that one is that it has a grey keyboard, but an oddly green spacebar and tabulator. Oh, yeah, and then there are the green switches and platen knobs. Also greeting us is the decal logo, which seems to be laughing at me the more that I see it: “Consistency? I think not!” Thankfully, the keycaps are relatively consistent. No changes in what the margin release and whatnot say.
Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter
They went there.
Underwood Golden-Touch TypewriterUnderwood Golden-Touch TypewriterAt this point, I can’t say that I’m surprised. A grey typewriter with the logo, white keyboard & green surrounding keys, yet no double-moulded M-R or BKS. And to top it off the switches and platen knobs are once again that odd green color.
Underwood never ceases to amaze, though, and produced one that was identical to this one in every way, but decided to put the M-R and BKS back on it.
Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter
From this online auction.
Yep. Right up there you can see M-R and BKS.
Underwood Golden-Touch TypewriterHiding in the left is the decal logo, and just to the right of the center is the green knob.
Underwood Golden-Touch Typewriter
I don’t know why this one is in here. We know about the platen kno — hold up. Look down in the lower right. The margin select button is green, too! Have those been changing colors this whole time without me noticing? Well, I went back to look, and they have. I haven’t seen white, but grey, black (SX150), and green seem to be the colors that those are moulded in.
How many variations are there? Do the red ones have green keyboards, too? How about red paint, black keyboards with green letters, white switches, and the decal logo? How random does this get? It seems like Underwood had a slot machine in its factory, and every time one of these got to the plastic parts someone cranked the slot and waited for it to say what colors to put on the thing. I guess it’ll take keeping my eyes open to see what’s out there, but it certainly seems that red is the most uncommon paint color on these machines, and that the decal logo is an added bonus.
Keep your eyes out for different color schemes. That way we can get a good idea on the rarity of some of these combinations.
-2008 Apple iMac