Yet more MSc yak-shaving.
In a passage talking about customers' resistance to new inventions and the destruction of domain knowledge, it talks about the invention of the Dvorak keyboard. Supposedly better than the QWERTY keyboard - but ignored by the majority of customers.
August Dvorak is said to have died a bitter man, claiming, “I’m tired of trying to do something worthwhile for the human race. They simply don’t want to change!”
Is that true? The citation is maddeningly vague - as most citations are - saying only "Diamond, “The Curse of QWERTY.”"
Which Diamond? Dustin from Saved By The Bell? Which publication? Cat Fancier Quarterly?
August Dvorak died in 1975, a bitter man: I’m tired of trying to do something worthwhile for the human race, he complained. They simply don’t want to change!
Diamond doesn't list his sources. So it's off to Google books!
A search for a variation of that quote turned up 1972's Computers and People, Volume 21
Annoyingly, Google only shows a snippet, so we can't see who the author was or if the article is entitled "Imaginary conversations I had with great inventors while I was out of my gourd on drugs."
I couldn't find it in any easily accessible archives. The British Library only has Volume 22 onwards
Luckily, my Twitter gang are excellent
I don't think it's quite what you're looking for? But this link might still be interesting / helpful? 🙂 https://t.co/wNFEmXSCfQ
— Andy T (@_andy_tea) July 25, 2021
Indeed! The journal was called something else for Volume 21. And Archive.org has a scan of the full magazine:
Robert Parkinson simply called up Dr Dvorak and interviewed him! The article "The Dvorak Simplified Keyboard: Forty Years of Frustration" was the result.
The interview took place in 1962. Dvorak died three years after this article was published. As his keyboard layout didn't gain any significant traction between 1962 and his death, I suspect his attitude didn't alter.
Isn't it nice when quotes are accurate! And isn't it frustrating when authors don't go back to the source?