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Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby sunnyd » Mon Jul 27, 2009 11:18 am

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1912419,00.html

By Claire Suddath (Time writer):
I can't remember how to write a capital Z in cursive. The rest of my letters are shaky and stiff, my words slanted in all directions. It's not for lack of trying. In grade school I was one of those insufferable girls who used pink pencils and dotted their i's with little circles. I experimented with different scripts, and for a brief period I even took the time to make two-story a's, with the fancy overhang used in most fonts (including this magazine's). But everything I wrote, I wrote in print. I am a member of Gen Y, the generation that shunned cursive. And now there is a group coming after me, a boom of tech-savvy children who don't remember life before the Internet and who text-message nearly as much as they talk. They have even less need for good penmanship. We are witnessing the death of handwriting.

People born after 1980 tend to have a distinctive style of handwriting: a little bit sloppy, a little bit childish and almost never in cursive. The knee-jerk explanation is that computers are responsible for our increasingly illegible scrawl, but Steve Graham, a special-education and literacy professor at Vanderbilt University, says that's not the case. The simple fact is that kids haven't learned to write neatly because no one has forced them to. "Writing is just not part of the national agenda anymore," he says.


While it is true, there is much to be said for "saving trees", using recycled paper etc., parents now face the expense of each child wanting his/her own computer. From my own personal experience, I do agree, children today do not want to print or use cursive (my son, and several of his friends hate it), most prefer to type whenever possible, and when they do write, it is quite often illegible. To say children are not being forced to do it, hence the lack of skill, is not all true imo. Quite often they are allowed to complete assignments at school, on a computer, rather than the school sending that work home to be signed by the parents when complete, and this includes younger children through high school, they just don't want to do it with pen or pencil any more.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby SlyckTom » Mon Jul 27, 2009 11:50 am

I dunno...I don't want to illuminate my house with whale oil either...The death of penmanship is just another technology that's being thrown under the bus. I don't see this as a bad thing - so long as intelligence doesn't suffer as a result.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby Fartingbob » Mon Jul 27, 2009 12:23 pm

Horse and carts fell out of favour when cars became more popular. Hunting became less popular when early humans domesticated aniamls for food. Technical evolution is a good thing, and these days typing is more important to most than having neat handwriting.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby zbeast » Mon Jul 27, 2009 12:26 pm

I'm one of those people who's handwriting skills have down graded to the level of a Cerebral palsy
victim. It's slower but If I have something important that I have to write with a pen, I just use block
leters. Trying to write cursive letters just results in me cursing.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby sunnyd » Mon Jul 27, 2009 12:27 pm

I agree, as long as intelligence does not suffer, it's a good thing, but I think they do need to learn how to do it legibly and while the writer in the article tends to pass blame, facts are facts, the technology is here and available. My son did cringe when he had to fill out a form to see the Eye Doctor, but I refused to do it for him, and then I found myself asking him wtf some of his numbers were, and made him do it again so it was legible. When they DO have to use pen or pencil, they rush, and that makes it worse.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby MrFredPFL » Mon Jul 27, 2009 12:33 pm

FB: yes, but unless you carry a computer, a printer, and a typewriter around with you wherever you go, the ability to actually use your hand to form words on paper still has value. i can think of plenty of situations where typing skillz are not a viable substitute. it's ok, though - being unable to write is the kind of thing which will adversely affect the person with the problem far more than anyone else.

zbeast: no problem here with printing rather than writing. i have done the same thing for MANY years.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby sunnyd » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:07 pm

I should add that I am one of those people that were born with a natural talent for calligraphy writing without really trying, and have always been creative with cursive or printing, for me it came easy, for many it does not, but it is still necessary to use in every day life. If a Doctor, hospital, potential employer (or whichever place), can't read the words or numbers, as Fred pointed out, it will affect that person. Many places still require forms filled in by hand, and even many job applications are that way still. While that will change more over time, it still presents an issue if they can't do it legibly. My son was required to fill out his college entrance forms all by hand (two weeks ago), and then, THEY typed in the information and set him up online for the rest of the orientation, choosing classes, etc., and now he can do all the rest without having to write it. Technology is great, but the basics still need to be taught, learned and used.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby Fartingbob » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:24 pm

MrFredPFL wrote: it's ok, though - being unable to write is the kind of thing which will adversely affect the person with the problem far more than anyone else.

Im not talking about being unable to write. That is a problem and can seriously effect your day to day life. Im talking about people not writing very neat. I scribble notes all the time to myself and its ineligible to anyone else but i can read it fine. However whenever i write things for other people i can slow down a bit and its fine. So what if i dont use cursive? Its harder to read anyway, it just looks fancy.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby multivariable » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:27 pm

Fartingbob wrote:I scribble notes all the time to myself and its ineligible to anyone else but i can read it fine.

illegible, perhaps?
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby Fartingbob » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:31 pm

multivariable wrote:
Fartingbob wrote:I scribble notes all the time to myself and its ineligible to anyone else but i can read it fine.

illegible, perhaps?

:lol: That'll be FF's spell checker making me look stupid again. I swear it has a personal vendetta against me.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby sunnyd » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:32 pm

:lol: Sure............ok.
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Re: Mourning The Death of Handwriting From Technology

Postby Lee1001 » Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:49 pm

viewtopic.php?f=46&t=46358&hilit=+handwriting



Christmas cards, shopping lists and what else? The occasions in which we write by hand are fewer and fewer, says Neil Hallows. So is the ancient art form of handwriting dying out?

A century from now, our handwriting may only be legible to experts.

from 26.02.09
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