Damien Ober discusses the Declaration of Independence, Internet viruses in the eighteenth century, and his new novel Doctor Benjamin Franklin’s Dream America....more
Posts Tagged: technology
If you are a white man, your Internet is different than other internets.
A comprehensive history of the reviled banner ad.
Facebook is changing journalism. Like you already didn’t know that....more
The personal computer may have revolutionized the way writers write, but distractions from the Internet and social media may not make it the ideal tool for writing. Designer Adam Leeb has created a hybrid typewriter called a Hemingwrite. Long battery life, instant on, and a mechanical keyboard help make Hemingwrite feel more like a typewriter or word processor, but with one key distinction—cloud connectivity backs up and syncs documents to services like Google Docs....more
Salman Rushdie donated his personal archive to Emory University’s Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library (MARBL) in 2006. Much of Rushdie’s personal archive was digital, a form that creates new problems for modern librarians to contend with. Consider, for example, Rushdie’s PowerMac from the mid-90s....more
A world of enchanted objects is both alluring and deeply terrifying.
And now, a little about how Silicon Valley treats the LGBT community.
It’s every bibliophile’s wet dream, but is Kindle Unlimited worth it?
Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to “Like.”...more
For the Atlantic, Shawn Miller argues that what we decide to erase, through our technology, is often more enlightening that what is kept. Drawing an analogy between Middle Age palimpsests and a 19th-century Italian priest, Angelo Mai, who dedicated his life to finding what past monks had scraped off parchment and written over, Miller wonders what deleted information of ours historians will be interested in examining in the future:
So, the questions we should ask ourselves today: What information are we devaluing now?
Most literate adults can tell e-disaster stories: information sent to the wrong recipient or group, or discovered by the wrong person, or issued in careless wording that gave offense, or did real damage. Some of these stories are funny. Some end marriages, families, careers.
Interactive digital storytelling: fiction’s next frontier? In the New York Times, Chris Suellentrop examines interactive technologies as used in Blood & Laurels, by Emily Short:
Exploring those possibilities is one reason Ms. Short became a writer of interactive fiction rather than of more conventional stories.
Facebook connects people every damn day. It’s just not how I personally want to connect. I trust that I’ll still wind up with valuable, lasting connections without the aid of online networking, and not waste so much steam in the process....more
Technology has changed the way writers write, and that change is not just about the rise of e-books. Composition in a digital world is much more malleable and fluid, and changes in methodology alter the structure of sentences and words. Author Tom McCarthy tells the Guardian:
Writing with word processors has given a new organisation to shaping sentences but it has also given flexibility; paragraphs can be switched, flipped and thrown out with an ease that would’ve been impossible when working with a typewriter.
The digital era has brought on a new golden age of science fiction. Electronic books, self-driving cars, and video phones may not seem too fictional these days, but technology like the Internet has empowered all sorts of new distribution methods connecting sci-fi writing with the fans who support it. New science fiction magazines launch with crowd funding campaigns, while tools like podcasts make fandom even easier— and ultimately, it’s all about the fans:
Sci-fi and fantasy’s online success is down to the strength of its community.
Paper notes and postcards have all but joined rotary phones and singing telegrams in the history books of communication. Email and text messages might have the advantage of speed (and sometimes playful naughtiness), but neither can compensate for the tangible quality of a physical letter....more
Already all the rage in Japan, the cell phone novel is slowly making its way to the US. The cell phone novel is a tweet-like fiction form: short bursts of serialized prose with chapters usually confined to 200 words or less....more
Whisper is an app that lets users make anonymous confessions. It’s brilliant and seems to be here to stay. Or stay as long as these things do....more
Driven by philosophical thought, Astra Taylor—documentary filmmaker, activist, and writer—looks at the way the Internet has affected social and economic change in her new book, The People’s Platform: Taking Back Power and Culture in the Digital Age....more
After centuries of shuffling papers, biographers must now deal with the sudden digitization of the self, and the behavioral changes that have followed.
Over at The Millions, Niamh Ní Mhaoileoin considers how email technology has affected biography—and what’s gotten lost in the shift from paper to computer....more
Serialized fiction is experiencing a resurgence, and we have technology to thank.
Back in 2012, The Silent History brought the serialized novel to our iPhones (check out our interview with co-author Kevin Moffett here). And now, there’s Wattpad. The New York Times takes an in-depth look the app, which sees “more than two million writers producing 100,000 pieces of material a day for 20 million readers on an intricate international social network.”...more
…the unplugging movement is the latest incarnation of an ageless effort to escape the everyday, to retreat from the hustle and bustle of life in search of its still core.
Phones, computers, and tablets, once seen as a way of facilitating interpersonal interactions, are increasingly being seen as barriers when it comes to face-to-face interactions....more
In the New York Times novelist Charles Yu, author of the hilarious, tragic, brain-melting How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe, recounts his experience falling in love with technology.
A private channel had opened up, a vast network of channels, connecting the inside of my head with the insides of other heads.
Last year, we blogged about the first annual Twitter Fiction Festival after it happened. This year, we’re giving you a heads up: if you want to participate in this year’s festival, happening March 12–16, submit your idea to the organizers here....more
“What matters is to know what you want and pursue it,” says Smith. She urges us to recognize that suffering is part of the package for everyone. “Life is going to be difficult.” Ride with it, she urges. Nothing is perfect. There will be “perfect moments and rough spots.”
We’re pioneers in a new time, she argues.” Everyone has access that they’ve never had before.” It’s a ”pioneering time because it is a time of the people…technology has democratized self-expression.
When we debate modernity, we tend to engage in all-or-nothing propositions. Technology is either wholly good or wholly destructive. Somewhere between these two extremes is where we will find the truth.