◎ Say Hello to my Little Friend

October 14, 2012

Well, I did it. I ordered a gadget that is going to have most of you scratching your heads, but hear me out.

The AlphaSmart 3000 is a devoted word processor with 700 hours of battery life and no internet access. AlphaSmart word processors had their hey day in the early 2000's, and are still popular for use in academic settings (particularly with younger children and special needs students). Of course, the distraction-free environment the AlphaSmart word processors offer is rapidly attracting writers even today.

I've seen the NEO (AlphaSmart's newer model) at National Novel Writing Month write-ins before, and never understood exactly what I was looking at. I briefly attended the NaNoWriMo meet and greet in Santa Fe yesterday, and my long-standing question was answered: one of the former MLs revealed the story behind the NEO and why it's a writer's best friend. Long battery life, no distractions, tough as a Nokia phone; essentially, a no-excuse writing machine. (A note about how it works: The AlphaSmart records your key-taps, so once you connect the keyboard to your computer via USB cable or infrared sensor and open a Word document/email/Notepad/etc., it'll regurgitate whatever you wrote as if you were typing it then and there. Pretty cool, right?)

Suffice it to say that within eight hours of seeing and hearing about it, I ordered a AlphaSmart 3000 from eBay for $29.95. I'm stoked to try it out!

Of course, I now realize that purchasing the new-and-improved NEO would have been wise given its sleek black look and improved features. Although I'm sure the AS3K will be just fine, I might order a NEO and loan out the AS3K at the NaNoWriMo write-ins I'll be leading in November!


  1. This seems really cool. And definitely useful, because I tend to go on the internet when I get stuck. Although, then I wouldn't be able to play music, which I always play from my computer. But still, let me know how it works for you! ;)

  2. This seems really neat and useful for writing! I hope it works well for you, let us know! :D


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