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Working as a clinical psychologist in a hospital (I’m now retired) I had always used pen and paper to take interview notes, even as come colleagues were beginning to use laptops to do the same. I type faster than I write (especially if I try to write legibly), but the cognitive process is different. It is easier to engage with an interviewee while holding a pen than it is when ‘tending’ a computer. The same could be said about taking notes in lectures. I feel that the process of writing by hand provides an improved level of learning and analysis. The information is ‘digested’ rather than merely recorded.
I also fully agree that more must be done to return vacant housing to use, and the general taxation system must be changed to deter vacant properties. The 6 month exemption for vacant properties should be ended and if a residential property is empty for more than 12 months the local housing association should have the right to compulsory purchase the property at the market rate based on the condition of the property. Each council should be obliged to maintain a register of vacant properties and what actions it is taking to bring that property back into use. This should be available online and community councils should hold local authorities to account.