Shorthand as Lost Art


After the Make event in Seattle on Friday,  Libby Buloff and a bunch of others got a table at a local bar and I joined them.    In one of those unusual turns typical of a geeky conversation,  Chloe went from talking about programming video games as kid to explaining the beauty and complexity of shorthand — with examples, as shown below.   I doubt Chloe has any practical use for shorthand — except her own personal use.   She talked about as a notational system of great power and her deep knowledge was persuasive.

We associate shorthand with secretaries from a Mad Men era.   Somewhere there are stacks of notebooks written in this strange notation, existing like hieroglyphs — cultural records that few people can decipher.    Excepting Chloe.