My sharp EL-6790 is a gadget that I haven’t used in years, and don’t even remember seeing in a while, which is why I’m not including a photograph. But for a long time it was one of my very dearest writing tools, and I’m a bit disappointed that I haven’t found a perfect replacement for it yet, though between netbooks, the alphasmart, and other PDAs, I don’t feel the loss that keenly.
I got the Sharp in the fall of 2000 with some birthday money from my Granny, at a Grand & Toy office supplies franchise in a mall. I guess I had in mind that I wanted to use something like this as a portable writing keyboard, and even though it really wasn’t designed for that, I managed to find my own way of making that work.
It was a little bigger than a standard scientific calculator, but held horizontally instead of vertically, with a full qwerty keyboard and a little screen that could hold four rows of fourteen letters, as well as a few status indicators above and below. In ‘memo’ mode, which was what I mostly used, you could type in up to 512 characters before having to move onto the next memo, and there was no word wrap. (It probably wouldn’t have worked too well on that narrow screen anyway.) Read the rest of this entry »