Idiomdrottning’s homepage

PDA vs books

I’m seeing a lot of talk about retro Palm-style PDAs lately, but how about e-ink readers? Batteries that last a month, reading focused, fetch-and-keep approach to connectivity, readily available.

I remember reading through a couple of Gutenberg books on a PDA in the nineties, and how that sucked. The screen could fit like three sentences and it was slow going turning the page.

Not that I want to encourage people having a lot of extraneous gagdets, and, these e-ink readers are read-only for the most part, which can be another drawback with them. For distraction-free writing, an e-ink reader isn’t gonna cut it.

Ultimately, as far as I understand it, the primary purposes of using a PDA instead of modern stuff is:

The first two are legit things to want, and so is the third thing… to the extent that it actually works.

I’m personally way more chilled out with a book than fiddling with an electronic organizer.


People writing in with other things to do with a PDA but those are all things where I love a paper planner (“Bullet” or not). I switched to digital since I started working from home and don’t need to bring my system with me anymore, but I really love office supplies! Pens, paper… For timekeeping I love my (non-smart) wristwatch.

I write shorthand (Melin system) so I love getting to use that skill, too. If it’s easy to make a PDA, it’s even easier to make a paper planner or schedule.