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Ode To Graffiti

Graffiti was the hand-writing recognition system of Palm Computing for their Palm OS. It offered a rigid input system that allowed for quicker stylus-to-tablet input. This came about in a eureka moment for Jeff Hawkins, founder of Palm, when he realized that stylus input is something that could be taught and learned, just as with touch-typing. From there, the engineers at Palm put together Graffiti as a series of strokes that could translate into every letter in the alphabet, every number, and even a variety of symbols.

Ode to Graffiti

I'm a Palm nut. I can't get over Graffiti input, it feels as natural to me as any other recording method. It's also the main reason I keep going back to Palm devices, I just can't shake how useful they are just for basic note-taking. Sure, there is a nice long list of reasons not to go back to PDA's, but the efficiency of the Graffiti method isn't one of them.

Unfortunately though, Palm Computing doesn't exist any more. It was bought by HP and then had pieces sold off to other companies. Handwriting recognition seems so advanced now that it's not the cudgel it was seen to be when Graffiti first came around, so who knows what that means for Graffiti. In fact, who needs something like Graffiti when we can just write on a tablet in our own unique handwriting style' Maybe itwas just useful for the time that it was around, and for that I'm certainly grateful.