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The smart typewriter is here

You can order the cloud-powered Freewrite today.

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Find it nigh-on impossible to focus when writing on your computer? You now have a dedicated device to help you shut out the social networks and other distractions: after more than a year's wait, Astrohaus has started taking orders for the Freewrite (formerly the Hemingwrite). Plunk down $549 ($449 in the first 24 hours, or $499 through the end of March) and you'll get a smart typewriter that lets you cut out non-essentials while keeping the conveniences of modern tech. You only have an E Ink display and a mechanical keyboard to work with, but there's WiFi under the hood to sync your masterpieces with Dropbox, Evernote, Google Drive and other cloud services. You also have onboard storage for over a million documents, in case you're particularly prolific, and the 4-week battery life will keep it running through an epic-length camping trip.

Ordering now will put a Freewrite in your hands sometime in March. This is unquestionably a lot to spend on a single-purpose device, especially in an era where those kinds of gadgets are falling by the wayside (see the declines of e-books and e-readers if you need an example). You can get narrowly focused writing apps like WriteRoom and Writed for much less, too. However, there is a certain allure to a smart typewriter like this -- it's a surefire way to keep yourself disciplined without purposefully crippling your computer.

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