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Figures and Tables. Citations Publications citing this paper. Highlighting professional writing: on screen note-taking as part of writing from sources by professionals Mark S. Idea generation and material consolidation: tool use and intermediate artefacts in journalistic writing Simon Attfield , Sarah Fegan , Ann Blandford. References Publications referenced by this paper.
Technical Report No. Linda S. Distributed cognition: toward a new foundation for human-computer interaction research James D. Hollan , Edwin Hutchins , David Kirsh. Advances in interactive video scanning of paper documents Stuart J. Distributed collaborative writing: a comparison of spoken and written modalities for reviewing and revising documents Christine Neuwirth , Ravinder Chandhok , Davida Charney , Patricia G.
Wojahn , Loel Kim. This is why scrolling for example, which achieves the functionality of navigating, has been the more plausible choice for online texts whether the page space is simulated or not. The previous insights and conclusions should be translated into guidelines and then technical choices, which collectively comprise the alternative approach.
The first two steps can be achieved via the theoretical model for materiality I proposed previously. This is reason to consider being specific. Specificity is another guideline that can be added. Acknowledging all the complications when migrating to the digital should lead us to be specific.
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The lesson to take away from these examples is not to throw up our hands in frustration and limit development to building the perfect paper emulator; there would be little point in that … instead of developing the perfect paper emulator, we can develop capabilities based on our understanding of specific disciplinary practices, specific types of reading, and specific genre of material. We can tame the vagaries of our imaginations by checking in with our readers.
Marshall , This requires a re-aligning of each of these capabilities with textual dimensions to see how the shift influences them. This alternative approach can also be an opportunity to rethink the social role of the book and its genres. Marshall makes a similar point while citing Dominick in the context of discussing the genre of textbooks:. The important lesson to take away here is that there is little point in carrying an unsuccessful genre forward from print to digital.
Rather, this transition might provide exactly the right opportunity to rethink the form and its social role. As he winds up his dissertation, Dominick predicts that in two generations, textbooks as we know them will disappear completely. Of course the disappearance of textbooks that Dominick talks about refers to the gradual replacement by new rising genres. It goes without saying that we cannot talk about new genres independent from a new set of pedagogical paradigms. The goal of the prototype 3 is to apply the theoretical model that has been explained and to demonstrate their applicability.
I will start this section with a historical overview. I will also discuss a number of themes related to reading as an activity and the book form in general. What Watt mainly does is show the interconnectedness and interdependence between formal conventions and the wider social, cultural, and material context:. Watt , In elaboration, Watt explains that:. The new literary balance of power… tended to favor ease of entertainment at the expense of obedience to traditional critical standards Watt , Both link formal conventions to the wider context historical, social, philosophical and technological.
It is useful to try to combine ideas from both of them. Here is a table that does so. The main lesson that we can learn is that genre is created at the intersection of history and technology. Through his argument, Ong differentiates between orally- based thought and chirographically and typographically based thought Ong , 36— The novel belongs to the second type, while a genre like the epic shows the dynamics of orality. Here is another table I prepared based on these ideas. Both tables help us see the network of relations in which a genre is born. The lesson to be learned is that migrating a genre from one technology to another entails a break in this network.
The digitization of a novel from the 19 th century includes a break with several elements from the original network in which the work was produced. Migration of texts, which remains a necessity, is better thought of as a process of translation with a certain amount of loss and gain.
The best strategy is to acknowledge the shift in its different levels historical, philosophical, and technological and do that systematically and self-consciously. This validates the previous comment about reading as taking place in an ecosystem of devices. Because reading is becoming more diverse and multifarious, the definitions of the e-book is not stable. It can simply be a pdf, a Kindle file, or software for browsing documents. When we think of novels, we tend to think of immersive reading as prototypical for this kind of reading.
But reading is a diverse activity with multiple forms and objectives. Marshall provides the following table that illustrates the different types of readings Marshall , If we could talk about an emerging type or types of reading among these it would definitely be browsing and hunting. In this sense, a website is most comparable to a magazine. Vandendorpe adds that:.
In the future, if this trend continues, the novel as a literary genre could well become an endangered species, despite its long history. Vandendorpe , The claim about the novel as an endangered genre should not concern us here. The significant claim remains that the hunting and browsing modes which are generally shorter and pragmatic are becoming the norm, mainly due to the new technology for reading.
These are annotation and navigation, with two sub-categories: a. The prototype I am going to describe here is still under development and has not been programmed or tested yet. However, it will serve the present purpose of suggesting specific ways to put the principles so far discussed into use. Specifically, the main objective is to reach a form for digitizing novels and a platform for reading them that seeks to explore the possibilities of the digital medium without being limited by the urge to emulate the print codex. The end product can be described as a program.
In addition, the book as a logical object serves the purpose of simultaneously presenting an argument in logical sequence and making it debatable. The following step is to look for functionalities behind the familiar forms in order to envision alternative ways to achieve them. The following table lists the different forms and their corresponding functionalities in the codex novel. The table includes a variety of forms, ranging from those related to layout, materiality, and genre.
I left the classifying and grouping of these elements to the third column which specifies the textual code each of them is related to. The table is neither meant to be exhaustive nor strictly technical as some items or their designated functionality might be controversial. The purpose is to explain in concrete examples the idea of the book as a program and of forms as parameters of performance.
The table also helps expose the problematic nature of emulating or simulating print forms if we disregard the functionalities behind them. As shown in the table, I propose some alternative ways to perform the same functionalities digitally and describe the program behind some of them in pseudo-code. The information in the table is necessary but reaching new forms always requires a great deal of experimentation, similar to the experimentation that definitely took place before the print codex took its final form.
This urge towards experimentation is embraced in the prototype. Another starting point for the prototype is a different conception of the reading activity, one that is more akin to the digital medium. The print codex served, and also created, a certain ritual of reading.
Writing Technology_ Studies on the Materiality of Literacy
The computer, similarly, has its own ritual of reading on screen, closer to the browsing and hunting modes as previously noted. The interface of iNovel is meant to serve this mode of reading, browsing and hunting, by creating a performative space that encourages it. The reader is supposed to be browsing and navigating short segments of text one at a time rather than engaging in long silent reading. The general view of the interface of iNovel is shown in Figure 1. The interface has different sections each serving a purpose. The central space is reserved for the text which can be viewed in four formats: iFormat, pdf, plain, and experimental.
The video clip icon on the bottom right corner becomes active when there is a video clip available about the section being read, usually a clip from a movie adaptation. There are two timelines: Historyline and Storyline located above and below the text. The icon at the bottom right corner opens the iCritic tools window. The experimental tab inside the central section allows students to choose from among a number of experimental formats.
One of these might be having the text flash as one word at a time or as a group of lines separated horizontally as shown in Figure 3. The experimentation will help student be conscious of graphical aspects of texts and the fact that units like lines, paragraphs and pages are not ideal or transcendental. Such unusual presentation of the text will also help demonstrate the rearrangement process among the different dimensions or layers of the text, for example, the corresponding shift in the documentary and auditional levels.
The idea here is to reveal the deeper layers, much like the command that reveals the code in HTML pages. The code can refer to all the active but invisible codes like those related to genre, graphics, layout…etc. Those who are involved in the section being read will have the small green dot as a sign of their activity. Figure 4 shows the starting profile of Thomas Gradgrind. As the example shows, the character profiles start with minimal information and remain editable so that students can add information as they progress in the novel. Presenting characters in this way will make reading and interacting with characters more enjoyable.
The presentation of the text in each iPage varies depending on the nature of the text whether it is narration, description of a place or dialogue. This is meant to go beyond the imitation of print besides making reading the novel closer to browsing because readers are engaged with a short segment of the text at a time and the variety of the presentation breaks the flow of the text. In addition, styles can vary in presenting segments of the text inside each iPage. This might serve as a good example of how the different dimensions of a text documentary, linguistic, auditional work together towards a certain effect.
It is also safe to assume that the effect created by the iFormatting in the previous example is definitely a modified one than the original due to the material shift. The iFormat tries to include multimedia in a creative way by making them tools in the narration presentation of the text and sometimes in real time. Another example is the dialogue between Gradgrind and Sissy which can be presented in a comics-like manner.
Both of the timelines provide orientation and background knowledge. They allow the presentation of information visually which helps easy absorption. The Historyline is designed to help students contextualize the work historically and in relation to other works by the author. The Historyline in the above image is adapted but it can be done in limitless ways. The general form is that it contains two sections: one about the author and another about the time, the work in focus should be highlighted as the example shows. The Plotline, on the other hand, has different objectives, as shown by the sample segment in Figure 5.
The plotline does different things: first, it serves as a table of content by containing links to the different chapters and subchapters and by being navigatable, second, it serves as an orientation tool by showing how far the readers has gone in the text; third, it helps readers keep track of the events in the story and see the interrelation among them by including shortcuts to events, characters, and places; and fourth, it contributes in making the reading activity exciting by introducing suspense. As shown in the example, the events and details on the timeline unfold gradually and there are hints to major events or twists coming up in the narrative in the form of words or icons a decision influencing a character in the example.
When students click on the iCritic icon, they open the window shown in Figure 6.
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There are four icons; the first one allows students to see the subtext, that is, the underlying themes behind a certain segment of the text as shown by the example in Figure 7. Presenting the analysis in such a manner is a visualization of the idea of subtexts. They should be able to copy and paste or post a link to this article in the Notes section on the interface.
In short, this is meant to be an interactive space for discussion. This part should work in the following way: the program stores the different analyses of the students and the section of the text they address. It should store this information. With the analysis of characters, for example, the program should ask for explanations, link this with stored information about other characters and form new questions for the student. This is just a general framework.
The premise here is the idea of partnership complementary division of tasks and incremental intelligence the machine becomes smarter with more interaction and feedback. The search box is supposed to include the availability of content-based search, i. This will be helped by means of interpretative tagging. The html code of the text should include tagging of thematic and interpretative elements which will make searching for them possible.
For example, the following tags:. In addition to tagging, search should include the subtexts: the analysis of themes and motifs.
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- Writing Technology_ Studies on the Materiality of Literacy | Deconstruction | Jacques Derrida.
- Find a Book.
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In this way, the result will show both the analysis and the relevant text. The different sections can remain editable. For example, students can be assigned characters and asked to complete their profiles or to rewrite certain section from a different POV and post this. The iFormat does not have to be complete but rather a sample like the one cited here can be posted and then students can work on the plain text and provide their own ideas as to how the text can be formatted. In conclusion, the iNovel prototype serves as a tool that takes into account the complex factors at work when a text is migrated from print to digital, especially in terms of the multidimensionality, the interrelation between the materiality of the text and its interpretative possibilities, and the ritual of reading coded in the material form.
The first part of this study has laid the ground for envisioning a better strategy other than that of simple emulation of the print codex as we came to understand the shift from print to digital in terms of a rearrangement of the reading space to create a new performative space. On the other hand, the digital medium provides a number of pedagogical possibilities like interactivity, academic search, and note sharing group work and study that would be helpful for educational purposes. However, further insight can be gained when the prototype is implemented and tested by users which is something I hope to be able to do in the near future.
Aljayyousi, Mohammad. Indiana University of PA. Bolter, David; Grusin, Richard. Remediation: Understanding New Media. Cambridge: MIT. Drucker, Johanna. Chicago: The U of Chicago P. Hayles, N. Writing Machines. Cambridge: MIT Press. Kirschenbaum, Matthew G.
Introducing the Writing Systems
Mechanisms: New Media and the Forensic Imagination. Landow, George P. Hypertext 3. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP. Marshall, Catherine C. Reading and Writing the Electronic Book. McGann, Jerome. The Textual Condition. Princeton: Princeton UP. NY: McMillan. McKenzie, D. Bibliography and the Sociology of Texts.
Cambridge: Cambridge UP. Ong, Walter J. Orality and Literacy: The Technologizing of the Word. Tanselle, G. Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania P, pp. Thibodeau, Kenneth. Vandendorpe, Christian. Oxford: Blackwell. Watt, Ian. The Rise of the Novel. Berkeley: U of California P. Aljayyousi, M. Aljayyousi MI. Aljayyousi, Mohammad Ibrahim. Start Submission Become a Reviewer. Abstract The study has two main parts: the first one reviews the current scholarship and theories about the materiality of text in print and digital form exemplified in the works of Johanna Drucker, Jerome McGann, Matthew Kirschenbaum, G.
How to Cite: Aljayyousi, M. Published on 13 Oct Peer Reviewed. CC BY 4. McKenzie , 60—1 However, both McKenzie and Tanselle seem to agree on the indeterminacy and changeability of texts — though Tanselle believes that there is an original statement whose recovery constitutes a noble enterprise and a form of historical enquiry. Here she introduces this model: Such a model includes two major intertwined strands: that of a relational, insubstantial, and nontranscendent difference and that of a phenomenological, apprehendable, immanent substance.
Here Hayles introduces her concept: I want to clarify what I mean by materiality. Hayles , 33 Hayles stresses the fact that materiality is not an inherent, thus preexistent, quality but comes as a result of a form of human intervention, like interpretation. Table 1 Model for the multidimensionality of texts.