Astrohaus' Freewrite Traveler might not be ideal for every writer, but maybe you'll dig it

Our Jason Weisberger isn't a huge fan of the Freewrite that he bought a few years back. Others feel differently about the pricey mechanical keyboard and E Ink display-equipped focused writing slab. From the looks of things, enough people dig it that the device's parent company, Astrohaus, felt that it was time to release a more portable version. Enter the Freewrite Traveler.

Weighing in at just under 30 ounces, the Freewrite Traveler is a lightweight E Ink writing machine with a folding display, which'll take up a whole lot less room in a Scrivener's bag than Astrohaus' original typing slab did.

From The Verge:

The Traveler weighs 1.8 pounds compared the original’s four pounds, which can partially be attributed to a change in keyboards. The Freewrite features a full-size mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX Brown keyswitches. The Traveler includes a thinner scissor-switch keyboard, which might be less enticing to some die-hard mechanical keyboard users, but it also had to be swapped out to make the Traveler lighter and thinner. The new device keeps the original 6-inch E Ink display, and it still charges over USB-C. Astrohaus says the Traveler battery should last for around 30 hours. It’ll cost $269 with early bird discounts on Indiegogo, and it will eventually retail for around $599. It comes in one colorway: a white interior and black exterior.

Unfortunately, while the hardware might be a great step forward from a portability standpoint, the Freewrite Traveler still suffers from some of the same needless bullshit that users of its older sibling have been forced to suffer. Read the rest

Everything I've written on my Freewrite for the last year

Freewrite is a single purpose first draft creative writing machine. I got one thinking it'd be a good idea to be disconnected from the internet and limited to just writing.

I offer this complimentary Boing Boing exclusive, collector's limited web edition The unabridged Freewriter compositions of Jason Lawrence Weisberger as written November of 2016 through the 24th of October, 2017 for your enjoyment and edificaiton.

November, 2016

This is a another attempt to use the Freewrite. I am hoping to write a few more sentences and then upload the document to the google cloud. This has seen marginall more use than my Baubax jacket.

So far this hasnt been the worlds most intuitive device and honestly editing anything even simple typing mistakes you makde a few words back is a huge hassle. Just look at this sentence! Capitalization and punctuation will suffer but I guess this will be great (???) for getting out a firsrt fraft of something that is completely disconnected from research or the internet.

the angle of my stand up desk is not very good for this keyboard. I’ll need to find someplace else to put it.

February ??, 2017

I’d forgotten this thing existed. Never moved it. Seems like it should be useful. Has not been. Freewrite needed a reboot after charging. The hard reboot power switch hold down routine is for longer than I suspected, or their manual suggests: a very long twelve seconds.

Appears that all is working again. I have the cable in so it can charge.

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I wrote this review of a Freewrite on a Freewrite

I jumped on the Freewrite/Hemingwrite kickstarter ages ago. It took so long for the single purpose, first-draft-only word processor to show up, I'd occasionally forgotten it was coming. I've had it for a few weeks now, and last weekend I typed a review out, on the unit itself.

Thing is, you can't edit on the unit. The review below is the raw output of my clattering away at the old-timey keyboard.

If there is elegence to be found in simplicity, the team at Astrohaus have done their damnedest with the Freewrite, their single-purpose, distraction-free word processor. Originally billed as the Hemingwrite, I bought into the kickstarter on this years ago, hoping it'd help me focus on some short stories I never get finished while working on my laptop, or bother to transcribe from my notebooks.

I waited a long time for this unit, so I'm a little less forgiving of the problems than I might be with another kickstarted piece of kit. I have absolutely no complaints about the fit and finish. The device is pretty lovely in its gaudiness. It is supposed to resemble a typewriter, I think of the 1920s-1930s generation of my Remington Rand Deluxe Porta 5. It sort of does, the selector switches are mounted in a way to resemble the reels for ribbon, but it more closely feels like a mid to late 1990s portable wordprocessor. It weighs slightly, but not much less. It works about the same, and part of its charm is that it throws back to a mechanical keyboard like they would have used back then.

Read the rest