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Keyboards fast making handwriting history

india Updated: Feb 28, 2009 17:09 IST

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When your great-great-grandchildren will find that letter of yours in the attic, they’ll have to take it to a specialist to decipher the strange symbols for them, say experts, who warn that the ancient art form of handwriting is dying out – courtesy email and text messaging.

Without keyboards, working in an office can sound really lame – going by today’s standards.

Not so long ago, neat script’s importance was told to children with the help of special handwriting lessons, The Sun reported.

However, the scenario has changed now.

Headteacher Angela Daly, of Cranbrook Grammar School in Kent, says: “I’ve been teaching for 40 years and, obviously, there has been a huge rise in the use of computers.

“I would be horrified to think nobody will be writing in 100 years. It’s a great art. Having said that, for students who find handwriting a burden, word processing can work wonders.”

Calling for a return to former standards, Kitty Burns Florey, author of Script And Scribble: The Rise And Fall Of Handwriting, says: “Maybe a couple of times a week pupils could produce something handwritten that is partly judged on its legibility, or even its beauty.”

The decline of pen and paper could also spell the end for graphology — the study of handwriting to reveal a writer’s character.

Perthshire-based expert Jan Harrison says: “You can tell a lot about people’s personalities from the movements in their natural script. Often people with the worst handwriting are the most intelligent. They think, and write, very quickly. I would hate to see a world with no handwriting. It would mean the loss of a wonderful skill and a useful insight into people’s personalities.”