Australian Film Critic Uses Newton

Grant had a tweet pointing to an article on Australian film critic, Paul Byrnes, who was recently awarded the Pascall Prize for Critic of the Year. What’s cool about his story is that he writes all of his reviews on an Apple Newton MessagePad. Earlier in his career, he suffered a repetitive stress injury and could no longer type without pain.

And after an estimated 2000 reviews, all written in long-hand with a stylus on a paperback-sized Apple Newton, Byrnes last night won the Pascall Prize for Critic of the Year.

This morning, I also read a speculative article on AppleInsider predicting the return of an Apple PDA next year. The article was dubbed the Return of the Newton. I’ll believe that when I see it in person.

I wonder what Byrnes thinks about the iPhone and its multitouch display and soft keyboard. Australia isn’t on the short list of countries getting the iPhone anytime soon. Would a larger, slate or book sized Newton be his next purchase? Would RSI be reduced by using a soft keyboard? There should be a study on this!

1 thought on “Australian Film Critic Uses Newton

  1. Late but still scribbling. Well, I love the iphone and wish it was more of a Newton, since you asked. Ditto the iPad. Both of them are great tools, but why oh why did Apple not incorporate the Newton handwriting recognition? Well, we all know why – SJ doesn’t like it, Garry Trudeau killed it, not ‘core business’ etcetera. I still write most of my reviews on the Newton, wondering how long it will last, and looking for alternatives… None I’ve seen yet, especially if you want to stay in the Apple world. I am giving Voice Recognition another whirl, although it is such a trial to keep learning new systems, though IListen to MacSpeech to Dragon. Sigh. It would be nice if computer companies took disability more seriously, but I manage my RSI by exercise and stretching and staying off the keyboard as much as I can. I also use pencil and paper in other work, where someone can transcribe for me. A luxury.

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