Home / Funny / Viral / How Did You Correct Something On a Typewriter?


Before the time of technology, computers, and printers, there was the time of the typewriter. But have you ever wondered what was the common Control Z button to undo a mistake? Well, to answer your question, Alec Watson of Technology Connections took a look at different models of classic typewriters to understand how type mistakes where corrected. 

While taking a deep look at the different styles of letter presses used in the different typewriters, he started to explain the interesting history of the typewriter. Watson later came to realise that there was one object which made the difference for practically seamless corrections. Apparently, it is the type of ribbon used. 

“This is a correctable film ribbon, which first made an appearance in the Correcting Selectric II in 1973. …This white tape sitting near the ribbon is really just sticky tape, and when you press this key below the keyboard, the type head moves back one space and when you next press a key, it will lift the sticky tape into position instead of the ribbon. …So, the pigment gets yanked right off the paper like nothing ever happened. At least… mostly.”

After some time as typewriters started to become more advanced, the correction features seemed to have been updated as well. 

“Since this typewriter is purely mechanical, the correcting feature is fully manual. To undo a mistake, it’s best to hold down the correcting key and then hit the erroneous letter’s key a few times. Usually after the third strike, we have lift-off.”

Watch the video to learn more on how exactly mistakes where corrected. 

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