When I was a kid, chalk was almost magical. Perhaps I simply enjoyed the smooth feeling of the chalk sliding over the chalkboard, or perhaps it was the seemingly forbidden nature of the teacher’s main means of communication. Whatever the case, I still enjoy the clicking of chalk on a board.
Snap forward to now. The Website Slatebox wants to take the old idea of chalk and bring it into the Internet age—well, sort of. When you sign up, the site gives you access to embeddable “slates” (think: small chalkboards) on which you can make diagrams, collaborate with others, or simply enjoy a creative moment—chalk sounds and dust not included.
Is it useful? For some people, the visual element could help with organizing ideas, linking notes to research sites, drawing out scenes, plotting, or even discussing a story or paper idea with a critique partner. So, for those who think in shapes and designs, this could be a boon. Otherwise, the site is little more than an interesting diversion. But diversions can be good.
Something you should keep in mind: You’ll need to have at least some familiarity with embedding a snippet of code on your site.