Best Disruptive Technologist

California Typewriter

In business since 1949 and under its current ownership since 1981, California Typewriter is a monument to the global transformative power of disruptive technology. As recently as the mid-19th century, scribes were still scribes, toiling longhand over tracts, screeds, and treatises at an unconscionably slow pace. Now, not only have typewriting devices undergone enough inventive hacking and maverick innovation that we can type as quickly as we think, but also California Typewriter lets us to do it in style. Enter the humble storefront and behold the showroom of seamless, sleek hardware from which Apple stole its golden mantra: round the corners. There could be a fire engine red Olivetti Valentine, the Tinder of typewriters; a turquoise Royal Quiet Deluxe, calibrated for feisty Facebook comments; or a pink and cream Royalite64, for discerning aesthetes and Tumblr exhibitionists. Some folks advise to buy in and sell off before the bubble bursts, but we’ll hazard a bet that typewriters are timeless.

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