Paper Is Still King

Last week, a rich, powerful, and large technology company announced a stylus to go with their popular product.

I have been looking for a paper replacement for quite a while. I typically read literature that contains a lot of math symbols. Constrained by my intellect, I am forced to write a lot of what I am reading - working through the equations on the page is a mechanism of reconstructing the short-term memory of the author as they worked through a proof.

I have owned at least 3 iPads over the last few years. The original intention was to use them as a device to read papers. They all turned into a bedside TV replacement.

I can’t put my finger on it but an LCD display and an expensive stylus cannot recreate the experience of reading and taking notes on an A4 paper with a $2 bic pen.

One possibility I am willing to concede is that the stylus industry is optimized for graphic artists. And it is possible that our needs don’t overlap - I certainly can’t imagine a paper-heavy workflow for something that involves an digital display.

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(c) Shriphani Palakodety 2013-2020