Egg Freckles
Notes from my Newton



Egg Freckles?

No. it doesn’t make much sense. Which is why the cartoonist Garry Trudeau coined this apt (or inept) bit of idiocy to lampoon the original hand-held Newton computer’s difficulty in deciphering handwriting.

After several years of supporting people and their computers, I have found that like the comic, human expectations and technological capabilities rarely coincide. I started Egg Freckles as a way to share my experiences with people and technology.

Who are you?

My name is Thomas Brand. I dropped out of art school and spent some time behind the Genius Bar. Today I am a systems administrator at MIT. When I am not writing about technology, I am running up hills for fun.

Read more about me and my setup on 512 Pixels and

Why an Apple Newton?

Apple’s dud from the 90’s may not seem like a exciting theme for a modern technology website, but the Newton still has a lot to teach us.

  • Newton OS is a document centric operating system that values your data over your apps. When you boot a Newton the first thing you see is your last note and not a screen full of application icons the way most computers work today.
  • The Newton’s handwriting recognition got better and some say matches offerings made by Microsoft more than a decade later.
  • Despite being a device developed before its time, the Newton is still beloved and supported by a small community of dedicated users. Thanks to their efforts, advancements such as wireless networking made there way onto the Newton long after Apple turned off the lights.

Learn more about Why I carry a Newton or get help Choosing a Newton.

The small print?