Written by Christina Vullo
Social Media Marketing Analyst
Xerox Corporation

800 Electronic Typing SystemIn a world where laptops, smartphones, and tablets are everywhere, it’s easy to take the amazing technology we have today for granted. What if I had had to write type this entry blog post on with a typewriter? I would have had to get it right the first time, or type the entire thing over again. All those little mistakes would have cost a lot of extra time — typing and retyping for every single edit.

Xerox changed all this when it entered the document creation field  in October, 1974 with the 800 Electronic Typing System. Xerox’s first word processing product eliminated the need to completely retype documents that needed corrections. Instead, the revolutionary system saved the first copy of the document on a magnetic card. The typist could then hit a “revise” button and retype only the portion needing to be fixed rather than the whole thing.

After those edits were made, a blank sheet of stationery paper could be placed into the system, and with the press of one “playback” button, the machine would retype the corrected document at a speed of up to 350 words per minute in one of seventeen different typefaces. This product was given the name “world’s most talented typewriter,” and it’s easy to see why.

So next time you’re using your laptop to type a document or your smartphone to send an email, try to remember how many advances and  new developments had to happen to get us to where we are today.