The Weekly Wrap Up: February 7

Mike Dudek opened the week with a post on How to Hack the Zebra F-701. If I didn't already have a couple of hundred dollars worth of machined pens from Karas Kustoms and Tactile Turn I would probably be prowling the aisles of Staples looking for the stuff to make this Frankenpen. This kind of blog post appeals to the machine designer in me.

InCoWriMo has started and I've been writing my letters; one recipient just got added though. Edison is giving away a pen to one lucky InCoWriMo participant who enters their draw. If you are interested, here is the link to the rules.

The relaunch of "Esterbrook" pens has been in the blogosphere a lot this week. This has been a minor topic on the last few Pen Addict podcasts where Brad has been discussing just how inept Harpen Brand Holdings has been with the social media side of this relaunch. 

The New Esterbrook Fountain Pen Open - Photo courtesy of Brian Anderson, used with permission.

The New Esterbrook Fountain Pen Open - Photo courtesy of Brian Anderson, used with permission.

This week Harpen launched a Kickstarter campaign for the pens and Brad has promised that he will discuss this on next week’s podcast. In addition, Anderson Pens has both a blog post as well as a video review of the new Esterbrook "J" Series pens so you are able to see exactly how fugly these pens are.

This bungling of a pen launch promises to be as entertaining as the 2013 Visionnaire or 2014 Scribble so get out your popcorn and listen in live Monday at 5:30 pm Eastern or catch the recorded show which hits the servers at about 10pm.

Leigh Reyes wrote a great post outlining how Harpen Brand Holdings could have approached this whole project differently and made a success out of it. Click through to read her article - For the next company that wants to revive a beloved pen brand.

Finally, the topic of cursive hand writing has shown up several times in my Twitter feed this week. The government of Finland will replace cursive handwriting lessons with keyboarding instruction starting next year. This came at a time when there was an ongoing Kickstarter campaign for CursiveLogic, a self taught cursive writing course. Pete Denison has a blog post entitled Cursive - cursed again? discussing the teaching of cursive writing in Australian schools. My personal thought on the subject is that if you don't teach cursive handwriting to a child, they will be functionally illiterate when presented with text that has been prepared by someone who uses cursive in their everyday life. Will someone who can't read and write cursive carry the same stigma as someone who can't read an analogue time piece or use a rotary phone? 

Inks Reviewed On The Blog This Week