Paper and pencil writing

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When did you last write a full page using pen and paper? This must be a difficult question for most of us.

I recall the last time I did some writing, two years back when I appeared for an examination in a southeast Asian nation that still relies highly on traditional paper and pen-based writing.

There are some other international tests particularly language proficiency tests that continue using such non-electronic testing of writing skills. What do you think – should handwriting be made totally obsolete? I would vote for that although there are instances where handwriting may be the only option. For example, in disaster situations like accidents, many a time its much easier to start taking notes on a paper than on an electronic gadget. In emergencies, even when paper and pen are not available important information can be noted on any surface by tool sharp enough to cause a scratch to write.

However, for academic and formal writing and for the purpose of record keeping the electronic way of writing is probably the best. In my view, writing electronically is more useful for error-free writing particularly at the current time when multiple language proofing software is available. Artificial intelligence helping to write in the English language are improving at a fast pace. I find such software more helpful than seeking help from an academic to improve my writing or for proofreading.

I remember my childhood days when I would collect and buy expensive and good quality pens. Particularly branded pens used to be a style symbol in the coat pocket. Now, most of those pens are either in the trash or lost.

Nevertheless, the children of contemporary society are probably writing much less than there parents and ancestors. The only time they probably write seriously is for their academic needs of school or college. Otherwise, the rest of their communication needs are fulfilled by texting, and that too, in shorthand texting. With time as the curriculums of school education are changing, it is likely that in future handwriting task will decrease drastically in schools or may become totally obsolete. In the current era, there is probably very little need a child needs to know writing with paper and pen to have a successful career. Furthermore, the flavour of writing letters or the feeling of receiving one by post are long forgotten almost from every part of the globe.

As we progress with time, probably a century later, children might have to visit a museum to know how their ancestors use to write with a pen and paper.

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