Monthly Archives: February 2017


Field Notes Fright 4

I just opened one of my Field Notes and the first page was completely torn out‽

How did that happen? I’ve always treated it well.

Any attempts at explaining what might have happened are welcome.

Malicious attempts by a third party and folding the page front cover to back cover can be ruled out. Like I said, this notebook was always treated well, that makes this so mysterious.


A digital Noris 2

Staedtler’s Noris the pencil I have written about most in this blog1. No wonder, it is my favourite after all.

A Noris picture from a previous blog post to liven up this blog post

That’s why I am especially happy to hear that there will be a high-tech, digital Noris, the Noris digital stylus for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3, as reported today on several web pages  (Sam Mobile, The Verge, AnandTech). I won’t be getting one, as I had some less than stellar experience with Samsung in the past, but I am nevertheless happy that the Noris gets the attention it deserves by being adopted and adapted by one of the big players in the mobile industry.

Noris Digital (Image © Staedtler)

Noris Digital (Image © Staedtler)

The Noris digital will be available in classic Noris yellow and in Noris eco green. The exciting bit is that the Noris digital is made from Wopex material, just like the Noris eco.

The Noris eco in five grades – an image from an old blog post to make this one less boring

To look at the pencil being used in mainstream media over time have a look at the Noris in the Wild page.

The analogue Noris in comparison (an image from an old blog post to make this one less boring)

The name Noris is linked to the city of Nuremberg, where Staedtler is based. Staedtler has used the name Noris as a trademark since 1901, but the black and yellow striped look has only been used since the 1950s. Recently Staedtler has started rebranding their Wopex pencils as the Noris eco, with black and green stripes, similar to the original Noris. Looks like the latest addition to the series is the digital Noris. You can find out more about the Noris in this Stationery Wiki.

Please don’t sharpen the digital Noris with the Staedtler 501 180 sharpener you can see below, it’s only for the Noris eco (Wopex material).

  1. Have a quick search here for Noris to see some of the blog posts about this pencil. []

Field Notes storage – the Swedish way

I’m quite excited about Utility, the new Field Notes Quarterly Edition.

Finally a metric ruler. Ever since I got my first Field Notes from Michael I thought a metric ruler would be quite useful. Trying to measure a length using the squares (if the paper has squares at all) is just not the same.

I’m also looking forward to comparing the Mohawk Via Vellum paper to previous Field Notes paper.

In anticipation of the new edition here’s a look at how I store Field Notes at home.

Field Notes in an IKEA Förhöja box

They are on my desk in one of the three boxes from the Förhöja set which was the Pencil Pot of the Month last July. In the UK the whole set sells for £15. In Germany it’s €14.99 and in Australia it’s $24.99. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem to be available in the USA.


500 14

This is Bleistift’s blog post number 500.

As usual with an anniversary blog post you’ll get some behind the scenes infos today.

Ranking

Well, 500 posts might sound a lot, but general stationery blogs produce a much higher number of blog posts and even when looking at pencil only blogs this number is not that high either (..plus more than 20 of my blog posts are about fountain pens, so they don’t  really count).

  • Lexikaliker is the #1 pencil blog (that’s a B outside the USA) with more than 1370 blog posts
  • Followed by the #2 (that’s HB), Pencil Talk with more than 620 blog posts.
  • Next, we got #2½ (that’s F), it’s Pencil Revolution with more than 560 blog posts.
  • #3 (H) is Dave’s Mechanical Pencils with more than 530 blog posts.
  • ..and #4 (2H) is Contrapuntalism. Already past the 420 mark, he’s getting close to 500. This is kind of unfair to Sean as he has distributed his pencil posts over different blogs (Blackwing Pages, Pencils and Music) so should actually rank much higher, but I’m not sure where exactly.

Some images from old blog posts to make this one less boring

A recent surprise

Recently Bleistift had the highest number of visitor’s on one single day in it’s more than seven years of existence. This was down to the well-appointed desk linking to my blog in a blog post collecting links. As my blog post was only one of more than twenty posts linked to I wonder how many visitors the well-appointed desk has. Is it even more than the Pen Addict’s a million a month?

Even a tweet/link from the official Terry Pratchett / Discworld Twitter account a few days earlier didn’t bring that many visitors.

The previous record for most visitors on one day was from 2015 when the Pen Addict podcast linked to Bleistift.

Some images from old blog posts to make this one less boring

Change in attitude

That brings to a recent change in my attitude. I used to think it would be nice if a large number of people read Bleistift’s blog posts (thinking it makes the time spend on writing them more worthwhile).  The number of blog posts on my to do list is huge, so huge that I don’t think I can ever write them all up, so in the past, I would pick blog posts from the to-do list that I think are of more interest to a wider audience.

After repeatedly coming across what happens to the makers of big stationery blogs (being verbally attacked and other things) I now think that it’s good Bleistift’s readership is fairly small. This changed attitude will probably result in me picking whichever blog post I want to write instead of trying to write up the ones interesting to a wider audience. This shift might also bring about some other changes, e.g. there might be more fountain pen blog posts. I have tried to keep the number of those down. Having stayed under 5% (p ≤ 0.05   8^D)  fountain pen posts on this blog this was successful, but in the future, this might change.

Some images from old blog posts to make this one less boring

Bleistifts new domain: https://bleistift.blog

Bleistift is the German word for pencil. It means ‘lead pen’, which is a name used for pencils in other languages as well, e.g. in Chinese (铅笔). So far bleistift was on a subdomain of a domain I bought in the 1990s. I should have bought my surname as a domain back then, but at the time I didn’t think the web would take off the way it did. I thought it will stay something geeky, like modems and BBS before the web.

Anyway, most (nearly all) stationery blogs, except some hosted on wordpress.com have their own domain, so I thought bleistift should have its own domain and I bought bleistift.blog. I actually pre-ordered pencil.blog in 2013, but I guess before the new .blog domains were released they run the domain names through a dictionary and didn’t release .blog domains representing common words, so I didn’t get my pre-ordered pencil.blog domain. It is now being sold by for a premium. I do actually prefer bleistift.blog, but pencil.blog would have been easier to spell for non-german speakers.

Some images from old blog posts to make this one less boring

A new SSL certificate and advertising

Some other recent changes you might have noticed is that addition of advertising to the blog. The idea was to use the advertising to pay for the new SSL certificate, which would have cost around £8, but a few things have changed now, partly because of the new domain. I won’t bore you with the details as explaining this would be boring to you and long wielded.

I also thought I could leave the advertising to pay for a month of Grammarly to go through the blog and fix all spelling mistakes etc, but the advertising I see here on bleistift is often quite odd and not topic related, so I will probably take the advertising down in a few days ..but out of interest I would like to know what kind of advertising you see on this blog, if you don’t mind telling me please write it in the comments.