In today’s class we’re going to look at the transition to print and we’ll discuss how technology and culture interact – and we’ll do some more blogging, too. Easy reading this week: just chapter two of Bolter’s Writing Space, which is about writing and technology.

I think we’ll start with the good old “Helpdesk i middelalderen” sketch – which is conveniently available on google video, youtube and various other places as well as on the NRK website.

I’ll show a brief powerpoint so we can look at pictures of incunabulas, which is always satisfying, and we’ll discuss the chapter from Writing Space as well as looking at the changes Elizabeth Eisenstein writes were engendered by print. We’ll draw on the concepts of technological determinism and alternate approaches to understanding the relationship between technology and culture in discussing this.

Finally, students will re-read page 19 of the section from Writing Space, where Bolter argues that technology and culture are so entwined that you can’t really talk about technology changing culture – they both change – and then we’ll discuss how that can be understood in relation to the different approaches to the relationship between technology and society/culture that Chandler outlined (hard and soft technological determinism, socio-cultural determinism, voluntarism, and our addition, co-construction), and that we discussed last week. Then, after a plenary discussion, they’ll blog their conclusions.

2 thoughts on “class notes: Print to Web

  1. Matt K.

    Have a look at Adrian Johns, The Nature of the Book (Chicago, 2000) for some
    significant challenges to Eisenstein’s thesis.

  2. Jill

    Oh, THANKS, Matt!! Will do 🙂

Leave A Comment

Recommended Posts

Triple book talk: Watch James Dobson, Jussi Parikka and me discuss our 2023 books

Thanks to everyone who came to the triple book talk of three recent books on machine vision by James Dobson, Jussi Parikka and me, and thanks for excellent questions. Several people have emailed to asked if we recorded it, and yes we did! Here you go! James and Jussi’s books […]

Image on a black background of a human hand holding a graphic showing the word AI with a blue circuit board pattern inside surrounded by blurred blue and yellow dots and a concentric circular blue design.
AI and algorithmic culture Machine Vision

Four visual registers for imaginaries of machine vision

I’m thrilled to announce another publication from our European Research Council (ERC)-funded research project on Machine Vision: Gabriele de Setaand Anya Shchetvina‘s paper analysing how Chinese AI companies visually present machine vision technologies. They find that the Chinese machine vision imaginary is global, blue and competitive.  De Seta, Gabriele, and Anya Shchetvina. “Imagining Machine […]

Do people flock to talks about ChatGPT because they are scared?

Whenever I give talks about ChatGPT and LLMs, whether to ninth graders, businesses or journalists, I meet people who are hungry for information, who really want to understand this new technology. I’ve interpreted this as interest and a need to understand – but yesterday, Eirik Solheim said that every time […]