User:ThomasW/Notes small notes

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The internet might make you feel smart. That doesn’t mean you are Fay Schopen

"Knowledge has always been, partly, an illusion. Consider the popularity, a few years ago, of a book called How to Talk About Books You Haven’t Read. Its French author, Pierre Bayard, points out that culture is “a theatre charged with concealing individual ignorance”.

"I, like many, treat my smartphone as an extension of my brain. Can’t remember something? Google it."


The Collection and the Cloud

Abreu, Amelia (2015) The Collection and the Cloud, The New Winquiry [Online] Available: .(Accessed:10.10.2015)

Cerf argued earnestly. “We don’t have a standard way of hanging on to the software as well as the disks.” As an archivist, what shook me so deeply in Cerf’s comments was his disconnect with the political economies of internet content production, or content production in history.

There is a huge difference between searching and finding.

Unless you feel a desire to engage with your past self, it’s easy to leave these platforms alone and forget those versions of yourself ever existed, along with the troves of data associated with them.

I quit Facebook in 2012. But in “Hotel California” fashion, my data will greet me if I check back in. (It’s part of what keeps me away.)

s Paul Jaeger points out, “geographical considerations” such as physical location, environmental resources, and legal jurisdiction are key questions for evaluating the integrity of cloud services for archival storage. Cloud computing, he argues, represents “centralization of information and computing resources in data centers, raising the specter of the potential for corporate or government control over information.”

Loss of control of the personal archive means a loss of societal control of the cultural record.

Platforms collect and structure our personal data in such tidy compartmentalized ways, yet the utter lack of context in data mining continually catches us off guard.

Archival institutions tend to have a point of view. University archives collect records of their institution; governmental archives collect government records. The Internet Archive, and other collections of its ilk, collect from the standpoint of old-guard Internet culture.

Distance from one’s data is a design feature, and ownership of one’s data profile seems impossible. What from our digital environments can become historical and archived?

I wonder if the data collected by platforms will at some point become more transparent, and at what cost or contextual shift. Will my daughter be able to sift through my dark data profiles and learn about the egregious number of times I looked at someone else’s profile? Will there be a new round of data mausoleums, offering to sell us peeks at the past? Is data like defaulted debt, ready to be bought and sold at a fraction of the price and subject to a secondary market?

Where are the future archives? Moreover, where are the future points of canonical extinction?

In the Paradise of Too Many Books: An Interview with Sean Dockray

By Matthew Fuller, 4 May 2011

The discussion is very simplistic and ends up in that way, where it's the authors against readers, or authors against their publishers, with the publishers often introducing scarcity, where the authors don't want it to be - that's a common argument.

SD: It's obviously not for me to say that there does or doesn't need to be scarcity but the scarcity that I think we're talking about functions in a really specific way: it's usually within academic publishing, the book or journal is being distributed to a few libraries and maybe 500 copies of it are being printed, and then the price is something anywhere from $60 to $500, and there's just sort of an assumption that the audience is very well defined and stable and able to cope with that.

Well, there's also the blog. Certain academic discourses, philosophy being one, that are carried out on blogs really work to a certain extent, in that there is an immediacy to ideas, their reception and response. But there's other problems, such as the way in which, over time, the posts quickly get forgotten. In this sense, a publication, a book, is kind of nice.

SD: Aaaaarg is definitely not a futuristic model. I mean, it occurs at a specific time, which is while we're living in a situation where books exist effectively as a limited edition. They can travel the world and reach certain places, and yet the readership is greatly outpacing the spread and availability of the books themselves. So there's a disjunction there, and that's obviously why Aaaaarg is so popular. Because often there are maybe no copies of a certain book within 400 miles of a person that's looking for it, but then they can find it on that website, so while we're in that situation it works.

But then there is a danger of US and European thought becoming central. A globalisation where a certain mode of thought ends up just erasing what's going on already in the cities where people are signing up, that's a horrible possible future.

Even when I was at the university and going to libraries, I ended up with huge stacks of books and I'd just buy books that I was never going to read just to have them available in my library, so I don't think feeling overwhelmed by books is particularly new, just maybe the scale of it is.

What I mean about being specific to Aaaaarg is that a lot of the mania isn't driven by just the need to have everything; it's driven by the acknowledgement that the source is going to disappear at some point. That sense of impending disappearance is always there, so I think that drives a lot of people to download everything because, you know, it's happened a couple times where it's just gone down or moved or something like that.

the scan being something that comes out of a labour in relationship to an object, to the book, and the export is something where the whole life of the text has sort of been digital from production to circulation and reception).

Cloud computing is a trap, warns GNU founder

Bobbie Johnson

cloud computing was simply a trap aimed at forcing more people to buy into locked, proprietary systems that would cost them more and more over time.

"It's stupidity. It's worse than stupidity: it's a marketing hype campaign," he told The Guardian.

Larry Ellison, the founder of Oracle, who criticised the rash of cloud computing announcements as "fashion-driven" and "complete gibberish".

Computer manufacturer Dell recently even tried to trademark the term "cloud computing", although its application was refused.

"One reason you should not use web applications to do your computing is that you lose control," he said. "It's just as bad as using a proprietary program. Do your own computing on your own computer with your copy of a freedom-respecting program. If you use a proprietary program or somebody else's web server, you're defenceless. You're putty in the hands of whoever developed that software."