Author Topic: Alphasmart  (Read 51412 times)  

Offline Marie Long

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Alphasmart
« on: July 30, 2014, 07:06:19 AM »
Mine came in the mail the other day. I have these constant urges to write now. It's hard to believe Alphasmarts are 10 years old. Why does old technology have to be so... intriguing?

Offline Jim Johnson

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2014, 07:12:39 AM »
Sometime simpler is better. :D I love my Neo. I was at a cafe a couple weeks ago writing on the Neo and the young kids with their tablets were giving me confused looks. A couple came over and asked what I was working on and they were both totally befuddled that I couldn't access the internet at all on it.

Offline Diane Patterson

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2014, 07:58:35 AM »
Sometime simpler is better. :D I love my Neo. I was at a cafe a couple weeks ago writing on the Neo and the young kids with their tablets were giving me confused looks. A couple came over and asked what I was working on and they were both totally befuddled that I couldn't access the internet at all on it.

"If the Internet isn't there...do we still exist?"

One thing I really like about the Alphasmart is the old-fashioned keyboard. Much closer to the feel of typewriter keys than the current flat "chiclet" keys.

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Offline Randy M.

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2014, 08:08:14 AM »
My Alphasmart Neo arrived in the mail three days ago, and I've been using it daily since. I love to write outdoors, and the Alphasmart allows me to do that without the glare of a laptop or tablet. To top it off, adding the text to my WIP on my PC is as easy as hitting the send key.

Offline RussLee74

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2014, 08:21:13 AM »
I wanted to like the AlphaSmart so badly, but I need to see more of what I've typed than the two lines I could see on the readout.

I'm glad it works for some of you, though. In theory, it's a perfect machine for getting undistracted writing done.
  

Offline ER Pierce

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2014, 08:52:08 AM »
I LOVE MINE!  8)

and convinced two friends to each buy one too  :P

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Offline schweinsty

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2014, 09:04:41 AM »
I just got mine in the mail yesterday, and I sat down and pounded out 2k that easily. I usually struggle to make my 1k/1.5k goal, so I am in love w/ my alphasmart.

Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2014, 09:14:10 AM »
I've had mine for several months. Things to love: No internet distractions (if I need to look something up, I just make a note all in caps), no outdoor glare, lightweight, AA batteries that last a year, hit the send key and walk away while it uploads my work.

There seems to be an endless supply of them on ebay but I may get a second one for backup just in case.



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Online Gina Black

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2014, 09:16:31 AM »
I wish I liked mine, but it has never worked for me. I'd rather write longhand or on my laptop. :sigh:

Offline Jim Johnson

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2014, 09:50:41 AM »
I've had mine for several months. Things to love: No internet distractions (if I need to look something up, I just make a note all in caps), no outdoor glare, lightweight, AA batteries that last a year, hit the send key and walk away while it uploads my work.


In case it's of value, you could download their file management software and use that to pull files off the Neo if you don't have time to wait for it to complete the 'send' text dump. I've found the software really handy when I want to get at those files and paste them into Scrivener.

Offline AJStewart

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2014, 09:59:24 AM »
I carried an Alphasmart Dana around Mexico, and it got knocked around in ways that would have damaged most laptops and killed every tablet I've ever seen. They are hardy little beggars. And the ability to write distraction free is so cool.

Offline LoriP

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #11 on: July 30, 2014, 10:00:07 AM »
I love mine to get my ideas out quickly or if I want to write outside, but I usually have a LOT more edits to do on those files. It is a mixed blessing...

Offline MyraScott

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2014, 10:07:00 AM »
I got mine a few days ago but I haven't given it a good workout yet. The smaller keyboard has reminded me my nails need to be shorter!

I'm a checker/re-reader so letting go of that and just writing is a foreign feeling.

Offline Chrissy

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #13 on: July 30, 2014, 10:15:03 AM »
I wanted to like the AlphaSmart so badly, but I need to see more of what I've typed than the two lines I could see on the readout.

I'm glad it works for some of you, though. In theory, it's a perfect machine for getting undistracted writing done.

If you have an Alphasmart Neo, you can change how many lines you see in the window by doing the following:

- Click on the applets button [it's next to the Send button]

- Then select Control Panel

- Next select Change default SmartApplet font...

- Then pick from the list below:
System [4 lines]
Small [6 lines]
Medium [5 lines]
Large [4 lines]
Very Large [3 lines]
Extra Large [2 lines]

I hope this helps.  :)

Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #14 on: July 30, 2014, 04:05:20 PM »
In case it's of value, you could download their file management software and use that to pull files off the Neo if you don't have time to wait for it to complete the 'send' text dump. I've found the software really handy when I want to get at those files and paste them into Scrivener.

Interesting. I have the 3000. Will it work with that? Usually, I just let it run while I'm doing something else.

I love mine to get my ideas out quickly or if I want to write outside, but I usually have a LOT more edits to do on those files. It is a mixed blessing...

Same problem. The touch is very heavy and there are a lot of missing letters and words. I find the newest version of Word does a pretty good grammar/spell check and I run that to catch most of the errors.



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Offline SanMarine

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #15 on: July 30, 2014, 05:51:26 PM »
I love my NEO too and use it for all my drafting. The limited viewing window is really disconcerting at first - especially if you're like to edit as you go. But if you're looking to speed up your drafting process, the Alphasmart is the way to go. I learned to pick a point on the wall or out the window to look at and just type out a conscious stream of thought. Productivity goes WAY up when you shut off that internal editor.

Offline Marie Long

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #16 on: July 30, 2014, 06:27:53 PM »
I found a Flickr group of people posting pics of their Alphasmarts in different places. Didn't realize how serious this was! https://www.flickr.com/groups/alphasmart/

Offline Aero

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #17 on: July 30, 2014, 06:49:08 PM »
Used my neo2 in a library today. I love it for pantsing my short stories.
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Offline Lisa Grace

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #18 on: July 30, 2014, 07:19:14 PM »
I've had mine for several months. Things to love: No internet distractions (if I need to look something up, I just make a note all in caps), no outdoor glare, lightweight, AA batteries that last a year, hit the send key and walk away while it uploads my work.

There seems to be an endless supply of them on ebay but I may get a second one for backup just in case.



I'm thinking I might get a back up too, because I love mine <3.
 
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Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #19 on: July 31, 2014, 05:30:35 AM »
Off topic: I get exactly the same reaction when people see my cell-phone...



What are those little button-looking things with all the numbers on them?  ;D



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Offline swolf

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #20 on: July 31, 2014, 07:47:27 AM »
Some of the ones being sold on Ebay don't have the cable included, which I assume is necessary to move the data back and forth.

For those that have one, is the cable a normal USB printer cable like this:



Thanks.

Offline Marie Long

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #21 on: July 31, 2014, 07:57:01 AM »
The Neo I have has infared. Are computers these days capable of infared??

Offline penrefe

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #22 on: July 31, 2014, 08:06:54 AM »
I ordered a Dana off eBay yesterday (there are none on UK eBay; all international only, with the shipping prices bumping up the price significantly!). I already have an AlphaSmart 3000, but it doesn't communicate with my PC at all (PC just doesn't detect it being plugged in--iirc, it uses one of those old-style keyboard-esque cables, the purple ones, and I think with my entirely un-technical brain that that's something to do with it), which kind of defeats its purpose.

Hopefully the Dana with a USB cable will work, and I'll be in business, because I did manage to get a lot of writing done on the 3000 for the brief time I used it. :)
« Last Edit: July 31, 2014, 08:10:23 AM by penrefe »
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Offline Chrissy

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #23 on: July 31, 2014, 08:47:25 AM »
Some of the ones being sold on Ebay don't have the cable included, which I assume is necessary to move the data back and forth.

For those that have one, is the cable a normal USB printer cable like this:



Thanks.

Yes, it is.

Offline swolf

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Re: Alphasmart
« Reply #24 on: July 31, 2014, 12:49:30 PM »
Yes, it is.

Thanks!  Might be worth looking into then.

If I do get one, and people ask me what it is, I'll say it's an Alphasm Art.