The Technology of the Book

The Technology of the Book

I had a fabulous time at Jason’s party….along with being social and eating strange and exotic foods, I got to talk shop with Jason, Emma and salmon, concurrently and consecutively. Emma had a great idea: she says that I should carry a moo concept book around with me…I seem to be getting a reputation for being a random idea generator, and I should probably write some of this stuff down so it doesn’t get lost in the shuffle.

The Technology of the Book
Something I was thinking about on the walk from the subway to home: the advantages of the techonology of the book. What are they? The historical monograph, for example, as an option, rather than a requirement. What are the perks? They’re relatively cheap, they can be both text-based and graphical. They are portable, and you can stop and start accessing the content at your ease. You can write your own notes and questions in the margins, making it your version of the technology. Though, granted, most people reading historical monographs have them on loan from a library, making the comments option slightly more problematic. Other elements of the book as technology: linear progression of ideas (from page 1 to page 356), though these ideas are usually subheaded and are browsable; traditional interface is familiar to the user and needs no introduction. Usability based primarily on the programmer’s ability to sub-divide and clearly mark content, as well as good content writing. The historical monograph is best defined as an argument, addressing the arguments of those before, but primarily a monologue defending the validity of a particular thesis.

How can my historical presentation fulfill these functions, and be still more?

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