Sometimes putting ink on paper opens up a 2D world


I’m inclined to think some of it’s just the interaction modes. Stuff like entering into a digital datebook is very linear. Sometimes putting ink on paper opens up a 2D world, you can write things in different directions, use arrows to point back to previously written things, and generally use shape and layout to carry meaning in a way tapping into a virtual document generally can’t. (in the commercials for phablets that use a stylus, they point back to reclaiming some of this interaction on a screen, but while I dig my Apple Pencil and oversized iPad for some tasks, I haven’t gotten into seeing if as a full replacement — The virtualness of the interface gets in the way in a way that tearing off a sheet of graph paper from the pad I use as a drawing pad/mousepad doesn’t.

That flexibility may be more important when the emotional landscape is so fraught and jagged, it can accommodate the non-linearity of your thoughts in a way the cold and sterile apps can’t. Along with being ergonomically colder as well; glass and metal glowing screens flicking up pixels vs soft, sligthly yielding, gently reflective pages from a notebook gently absorbing ink… Kirk

Kirk wrote the above in response to this article and it really made me think.

Categories: Articles

3 replies

  1. Absolutely. It’s far more satisfying to cross off a to do item on paper than it is to tick a box on a screen. At least for me. Or jot down a note of something done or left to do. Maybe that’s why the attraction to paper in times of stress.

  2. I’d also repeat my friend’s angle that paper is more permanent and less ephemeral than screens, and at times when the bedrock of your emotional world is being shaken, that might be soothing as well.

  3. Agree. I have a Note and write a lot of stuff, but nothing beats the paper. The only great thing about writing on screen is that it all gets saved instantly everywhere! On paper I sometimes end up taking a picture or needing to scan.

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