Tom Hanks has a love for an unlikely object: typewriters. The Hollywood star bought his first typewriter in the 1970s, a Hermes 2000. His love affair has continued ever since.
“They’re beautiful works of art. I’ve ended up collecting them from every source possible,” Hanks tells NPR. “Better to spend on $50 typewriters than on some of the other things you can blow show business money on.”
The actor’s peculiar interest has resulted in a new app for the iPad. Hanx Writer allows users to type the old-fashioned way, full of clicks, dings and capital shifts. The Hanx Writer even uses typeface from some of the actor’s old typewriter collection.
“The only advantage of a computer is you don’t have to return the carriage,” Hanks says, noting that the app even gives the sound of the return at the end of a line.
Unlike an original typewriter, the app has backspacing and delete. However, “you literally have to do it one at a time.”
Hanks was amused when NPR’s Audie Cornish suggested that the 2.0 version of Hanx Writer include a white out option.
“That would be funny,” Hanks admits.
The Hanx Writer app was developed by Hitcents.com. It is available for free from the iPad’s App Store.