Porteus Typewriter Build?

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Kasper Hviid
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Porteus Typewriter Build?

Post#1 by Kasper Hviid » 23 Jun 2014, 12:04

I would really like to have a bootable OS that turns my PC into a typewriter! To better express the overall idea, here's some of my inspirations:
  • - Leechblock is a firefox plugin used to help people stay away from distracting web content. I like it, but other people takes more extreme measures:

    - Author George RR Martin has two seperate computers: One is an ordinary one with Windows and internet. The other computer, which he use for writing, only have DOS and the WORDSTAR word processor. It has no internet and thus, no distractions whatsoever. http://www.theguardian.com/books/booksb ... -on-a-book

    - The first draft of Stephen Kings 449 page novel CELL (2006) was written on an old typewriter. (I happened to give that book to a friend, but I remember that he talked about it in the introduction)

    - When Dan Browns Inferno was translated into various languages, it was one of the most overblown publicy stunts: the translators were locked into a guarded underground location known as "the location" without internet or mobile phones. Mich Vraa, who translated the danish edition, described the extreme working conditions as an "amazingly effective routine and the almost autistic repetition was intoxicating". The complete focus cause him to get as much work done at 11 o'clock as he usually did on a full working day. (His employers were dicks, but that is another story)

    - The truly amazing scifi movie THE ENTIRE HISTORY OF YOU imagines a near future where everybody records everyting they see and hear.

    - The book THE SHALLOWS gives a lot of insight in how the internet medium changes our mental processes. As an example on how a media itself can change its user, the book mentions how using a typewriter instead of writing with an ordinary pen changed Nietzsches writing style.

I think there is a growing consciousness where people begin to question how much they really wants to be constantly connected. Some sort of "simple living" for the digital age. And I think its kind of cool.

... So I want a USB stick that turns any PC into a typewriter!
Now, I'm a Windows user. I have installed Linux a few times, but I don't have the knowhow to create my own distro. But Porteus multiple-choice builds should be able to result in something, perhaps combined with some booting parameters.

WORD PROCESSOR: I would prefer something like TextRoom or FocusWriter:
http://textroom.sourceforge.net/
http://gottcode.org/focuswriter/
But to stick to what the Porteus build offers, I'll go for LibreOffice

DESKTOP: I have no idea what would be the best.

FILE SAVING: I would like to save the text on the USB key itself. It would be perfect if it could keep backup on the computers hard drive or on some cloud.

INTERNET SUPPORT: Of course not! .... still, there are certain sites that could be useful without any risk of distration. For instance, I like http://rainycafe.com/ So a web browser with a non-editable whitelist might be an option.

So, these are my thoughts. What steps would you recommend for a typewriter build of Porteus? Any obvious shortcommings?

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brokenman
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Re: Porteus Typewriter Build?

Post#2 by brokenman » 23 Jun 2014, 22:01

For an instant solution I would recommend using ANY available Porteus desktop (together with the 'nonetwork' cheatcode) and LibreOffice.
How do i become super user?
Wear your underpants on the outside and put on a cape.

Kasper Hviid
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Re: Porteus Typewriter Build?

Post#3 by Kasper Hviid » 25 Jun 2014, 18:11

Thanks, that sound like a good approach. Win 7 claimed that the installation program perhaps failed in ways that it didn't care to explain. Nevertheless, the Porteus USB stick ran fine! Next step is getting it to write to NTFS, save.dat and all that. My general experience with software is that it always is way harder to automate processes (create a distro) than it is to just finetune stuff. So I'll just try and see how much I can adjust the OS once it is up and running.

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