NEW FAVOURITE WRITING TOOL | AlphaSmart Neo2 Digital Typewriter Review
I want to talk about my new favorite writing tool. You could call it a word processor. You could call it that because it is one but it’s, not necessarily something you would expect. I have been talking about this in a few videos, but i feel like it deserves its own video simply because i love it so much, and i want to talk to you guys more about it and i now have been using it for five months. So i feel like i have plenty of experience with it and i can better talk about it and without further ado. What i’m going to talk about today is this beauty right here? This might look very old school to you because it is, but this is called the alpha smart neo 2, and this is a digital typewriter. You type things on it and it’s. So so useful and i’ll show you some of its features, but i just wan na tell you you know why do i use this don’t? I have a computer. Yes, of course, i have a computer, but the thing about using my laptop to write is that you can also do so many other things on a laptop that a lot of the times. I will get distracted and i will check youtube for one. Second, i will check my email for just two seconds, just to see something and then i get distracted and then i don’t end up writing as much as i could have, but on this thing that’s all you can do you can just write.
It has a very small screen. You can only see the last four lines you typed you can. You can move up and down, but you can’t see that much and it just helps me focus, and i find that in my writing sessions, especially during nanowrimo, because that’s when i primarily use this. I would write so much more on this. In the same time span than i would on my laptop – and now i just want to pre face this by saying that you don’t need this, you don’t need any tool. You don’t need. Even a word. You don’t need a laptop to write. You don’t need any tool to write. The basic thing you need is a pen and paper but i’m, showing you all these tools, because a i think, it’s fun and b. I think they can help. They helped me improve my productivity. My enjoyment of writing my organization of my writing projects. They generally just improve my writing life, and so i just want to share it with you, but i do want to say that, of course, you don’t need any of this to write and don’t feel bad. If you don’t have this or you cannot afford one or you can’t, afford a fancy. Writing software. You don’t need it, but i just want to show you that these things exist and they are out there in the world if you so wish, to look into them. So a little bit of history on this typewriter, it was first created in 1993 by an ex apple employee.
He quit his job at apple, to create his own company and to manufacture this typewriter and it was used in the 90s and the early 2000s. A lot in schools to help kids with disabilities help them learn how to type now the last model, the neo2, the one that i currently have was released in 2007 and the company discontinued its production in 2013.. So i’m not sure when this specific one that i have what year it is from, but since it is the neo2 i assume it’s around you know 2010 somewhere around that time and honestly it looks and functions like new. These things are so robust that i think you can throw them off a skyscraper and they’ll be fine, um and it’s actually really light. It might look a bit heavy, but it’s actually it’s light most of the weight. It comes from the batteries that are inside and i’ll show you those and what you need to to make this work in a second now, there have been a couple different models of this typewriter along the years. I’Ll just insert some pictures on how earlier versions of this used to look like, but, like i said, the one that i have here is the very last model. So the newest model that was ever manufactured and saying that it still looks pretty old school. But i think that only makes it even cooler, in my opinion, so in the back here as you can see, it holds three double a batteries and, like i said, that’s, mostly the weight of this thing it’s in these batteries, but obviously the battery life lasts for Freaking i don’t, i don’t know i haven’t changed it and i’ve had it for five months and i’ve used it quite a lot and i haven’t had to change it.
I would assume, like a battery change, would last maybe a year depending on how much you would use this thing and also on the back. I’Ll include a close up shot, but you can see all of the different commands that you can do on this processor because, like i said it is a word processor and it definitely handles some functions and my favorite function is actually the ability to see. The word count of the current document that you’re in that’s very useful for someone who wants to have as many words down in one session as possible. So i definitely check that i use that function a lot in my writing session to see how much i have written but there’s also different things like you know: selecting text, pasting, copy pasting deleting there’s, even a thesaurus, although i’m not sure how outdated that is obviously Because this doesn’t have an internet connection and there is also instructions on how to use it on the back, which i think is really nice, but yeah, otherwise, it’s a it’s, a keyboard and up top here, you can see all of the files that you can access. It can hold only eight files and i think you can have maximum of 50 000 words in total across these different files, but that’s really not a problem, because how i’ve been using it is after every writing session. I would just transfer it to my computer, so that’s. Obviously the other very, very important thing is obviously you can transfer what you have written to your computer.
Otherwise, you know it would be pretty useless. So to do that, you need a cable like this again. You can find these really cheap off ebay, but it’s. Basically like a printer, cable and again, i will insert a close up shot here. This uh weird end goes into the alpha smart and then this is a usb output, so you just plug it in to your computer. Then you have to start a file either a scrivener file, a word file, a notepad file anywhere, where you want this data to be transferred, and then you would press send on the file from the alpha smart and the fun thing about this, in my opinion, is That it writes out the text for you and transfers it to your computer that way, but you can watch it being transferred, you can watch it being written onto your computer. It obviously does it at a much higher speed than you would normally type, but i just think it’s fun, so i’m sure you’re wondering how expensive one of these is and it’s not it’s. Really not. There are hundreds, if not thousands, thousands of these up on ebay and amazon, because they were used in schools there’s a ton of them out there as they were discontinued, being used in schools and so there’s a ton of them out in the market. I bought mine, for i think about twenty dollars plus about ten dollars, shipping and it arrived really quickly and, like i said, even though it’s an old machine, it looks like new as it would have looked when it was first manufactured and it works perfectly most of Them don’t come with this cable mine didn’t, but again you can find the extra cables on ebay for like a dollar or you might just have one of these lying around.
If you have a printer in your house somewhere so, but i honestly really enjoy my alpha. Smart, i really enjoy my writing sessions when i sit down and just type on my alpha, smart and i feel like it gives a different dimension to the writing session. Now, it’s. Writing time i don’t have my computer. I don’t have a tv. I usually keep my phone in the other room and i just have the alpha smart and i can just focus on writing for the 20 30 minutes or, however long i want to write, and i i usually find that i would go for much longer and i Don’T really notice the passage of time, and i spent all of that time. Writing or thinking about writing. Instead of you know, browsing reddit or youtube or checking my emails or all the other things and of course you can block these things on your laptop, but i don’t think most people actually go to the effort of doing that. And personally i just like having something separate. I don’t use it all the time i still write on my laptops. I still write in notebooks. I still do my outlining and world building on actual paper, but i just like having all these different ways, because i never know what i’m in the mood for and if i really want to be productive in a writing session. This is my go to now, but yes, i think that’s everything that i want to say about it.
I just wanted to talk to you guys about something that i really have enjoyed using for my writing sessions in the last five months or so, and it has really helped me, and i hope that you know you might be interested in it and pick one up For yourself and then i hope that it would help you write more words because at the end of the day, that’s, what every writer wants out of their writing sessions is to just write more because you cannot fix a blank page, but you can fix a page Full of really crappy words um and the more the more of the crappy words the better in my opinion, but yeah that’s it for me today guys. Thank you so much for watching. Do. Let me know if you have an alpha smart of your own or, if not, are you interested in a digital, typewriter or otherwise? You know what is your go to writing method? Do you write on paper? Do you write on your computer? Do you dictate uh words? What is your preferred writing method? I would be really curious to know. Thank you so much for watching.