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Pen: Pelikan Steno P470

Pen: Pelikan Steno P470

The Pelikan Steno is an unusual fountain pen designed for use by steno writers. Most modern fountain pens have fairly stiff nibs. They bend slightly when you press down on them, which makes the writing more comfortable, but the nib doesn’t widen much. On the Steno, the extra-fine steel nib is flexible enough to allow […]

November 30th, 2010 | Posted in New, Pens | Read More »

Shorthand Deathmatch – Pitman v. Gregg

Shorthand Deathmatch – Pitman v. Gregg

For a while, Pitman shorthand was the most widely used system of shorthand in the English-speaking world. It was used throughout the British Empire, which included Australia, India, Canada, and large chunks of Africa. In the United States, various authors were publishing their own versions of Pitman’s system, under a wide range of names. To […]

November 30th, 2010 | Posted in History, New | Read More »

Books: Course in Pitman Shorthand

Books: Course in Pitman Shorthand

There was a time when bookstores and office supply shops had rows of books on shorthand systems. These days, you won’t find any in a regular bookstore, although a handful of titles are available online. This book, available from Amazon, is one of those “print-on-demand” publications, where the publishers, Kessinger, have taken an old title […]

November 29th, 2010 | Posted in Books, New | Read More »

Fisher Telescoping Space Pen

Fisher Telescoping Space Pen

This site was written for geeks, and if you are one, you will already know that the Fisher Space Pen was invented by Paul Fisher for use in the space program. It uses a pressurized cartridge, and an extra-thick ink (which stops the ink from getting pressurized all over your space capsule). It can can […]

November 29th, 2010 | Posted in New, Pens | Read More »

Links to Distant Sites

Links to Distant Sites

Leah Price’s fascinating essay from the London Review of Books looks at the history of shorthand, and the similarities between shorthand writers and modern-day programmers. “Like the open-source movement a century and a half later, Pitmanism was idealistic, distributed and male.”  http://www.lrb.co.uk/v30/n23/leah-price/diary The Joy of Pitman Shorthand is a site created by Pierre Savoie years […]

November 29th, 2010 | Posted in Links, New | Read More »

Invent your own universal language

Invent your own universal language

In the 1982 cult horror film Big Meat Eater, nerdy butcher Bob Sanderson works to promote Adanaco, the “new universal language” he’s developed for his small English-speaking town. Inventing new languages, or new ways to write old ones, has been a geeky obsession for hundreds of years. Benjamin Franklin, irritated by the inconsistencies of English […]

November 29th, 2010 | Posted in History, New | Read More »

Quick and Dirty Pitman

Quick and Dirty Pitman

The best way to learn Pitman is to get a book and work slowly through the lessons. But you don’t need me to tell you that. If you’re reading this site, it’s probably because you get bored easily. You’re too impatient to order the book and wait for it in the mail. You want to […]

November 29th, 2010 | Posted in Lessons, New | Read More »

Pilot Decimo fountain pen

Pilot Decimo fountain pen

Some Pitman writers will swear that the best way to write Pitman shorthand is with a fountain pen. I went through a phase of trying various fountain pens to see if any of them suited me. The Pilot Decimo was one. It’s one of a range of pens from Pilot (also sold under the name […]

November 29th, 2010 | Posted in New, Pens | Read More »

Books: Teach Yourself Shorthand – Pitman New Era

Books: Teach Yourself Shorthand – Pitman New Era

Teach Yourself Shorthand: Pitman New Era. Teach Yourself Books. 182 pages. This book, by an uncredited author, has been around a lo-o-o-ong time. It was first published in 1949, and has been reprinted many times since then, with a wide variety of covers, but mostly the same text inside. It’s an easy book to find, […]

November 29th, 2010 | Posted in Books, New | Read More »

Books: Pitman New Era Shorthand – Anniversary Edition – O’Dea

Books: Pitman New Era Shorthand – Anniversary Edition – O’Dea

Pitman New Era Shorthand Anniversary Edition by Audrey O’Dea, Joan Sykes, Julie Watson and Pamela Williams. 152 pages. This is one of the more recent Pitman books around, and you can still find new copies for sale on some sites. It was first published in 1988, and my edition (shown right) came out in 1992. […]

November 29th, 2010 | Posted in Books, New | Read More »