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Say goodbye to Darkroom and hello to Q10

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In a previous entry, I reviewed a wonderful program called Darkroom. This minimalist text editor was and still is the pinnacle of simplicity and effective writing strategy.

That is, until I found Q10. Just look at a side by side comparison below (Q10 to the left, Darkroom to the right)

Q10-No-name-14022010-165806-1 dark_room


Nearly identical to Darkroom but with much more customizable environments, Q10 has now trumped my expectations on what a minimalist writing platform should do. Instead of hitting alt or esc and getting a window like Darkroom, Q10 only has one button F1, to take you to a menu card, which shows you the valid commands that work in its environment. Colors of background and foreground text are adjustable, you can set a writing timer (for those of you who want to block your writing), it keeps a running tab of word count, characters, paragraphs and keep them on display at the bottom of the page (also customizable).

And it types. As in typewriter. Yes I know it sounds cheesy, but for those of you who miss the days when you were a kid playing on your parents typewriter or seeing classic movies of Superman and had dreams of working for a newspaper (Daily Scoop?), this is your chance to let your fingers fly and get the sounds back!

Is that why I am happy you ask? Well it is one big selling point on this software. Most laptops have quieter keyboards or the sound of the keys striking does not lull you into a zen-like stupor as you spill your thoughts onto the page. One can make the case that the sounds of certain keys striking gives one the feeling of doing more or of encouragement in one’s endeavor. This I heartily agree with and can attest to. After trying and comparing Darkroom and Q10, I am now a Q10 believer. It took me about 30 seconds to write a small paragraph of free prose concerning my cat and dog chasing each other, the information came out so quickly and with such minimal effort (again, maybe the effort of thought was masked by the sounds of the clicks and clanks of an old Smith Corona, Underwood, or Selectric.

My suggestion to you who are interested in trying something a little simpler and much more enjoyable then OpenOffice or Word to give this a shot. Obviously it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of a normal word processor, but that isn’t the goal. It is to bring the writer back to the written word.

Oh, and once again, this is freeware, can sit on a USB thumb drive and be taken anywhere because it does not need to be installed to function (self contained in one neat file!).

In case you missed the location of where to download it. Here it is.


Written by Josecito

January 2, 2011 at 8:12 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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