15.232 recommended reading (perhaps in bed)

From: by way of Willard McCarty (willard@lists.village.Virginia.EDU)
Date: Sat Sep 08 2001 - 02:49:37 EDT

  • Next message: by way of Willard McCarty: "15.233 conferences"

                   Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 15, No. 232.
           Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London

       [1] From: "David L. Gants" <dgants@parallel.park.uga.edu> (23)
             Subject: _Cyberpl@y: Communicating Online_

       [2] From: Arun-Kumar Tripathi (49)
             Subject: Christine Borgman: Massaging the Message

             Date: Sat, 08 Sep 2001 07:31:58 +0100
             From: "David L. Gants" <dgants@parallel.park.uga.edu>
             Subject: _Cyberpl@y: Communicating Online_

    >> From: Brenda Danet <brenda.danet@yale.edu>

    Humanist subscribers may be interested to learn of the publication of my
    book, _Cyberpl@y: Communicating Online_ (Berg Publishers, Oxford,
    distributed in the U.S. by NYU Press), now available in stores in the
    U.S.and U.K., and online.

    The book presents five studies of playfulness in communication on the
    Internet. Two studies deal with linguistic and textual aspects, and three
    focus on visual aspects. Topics include the language of public email,
    writing as playful performance in a synchronous chat mode, digital
    greetings, ASCII art and a related form of text-based art on IRC, and "font
    frenzy," a passion for digital fonts. The book is heavily illustrated with
    42 color plates and 91 black and white illustrations. I have also created
    an extensive Companion Website for it, at

    URL http://atar.mscc.huji.ac.il/~msdanet/cyberpl@y/ (don't forget the @!!)

    More information on the book, including the Table of Contents, an author
    biography, ordering information, resources and links, etc., as well as a
    fully illustrated sample chapter, is available on the Website.

    Brenda Danet
    Emerita in Sociology & Communication, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
    Visiting Fellow, Dept. of Sociology, Yale University
    Home page: http://atar.mscc.huji.ac.il/~msdanet

             Date: Sat, 08 Sep 2001 07:34:23 +0100
             From: Arun-Kumar Tripathi
             Subject: Christine Borgman: Massaging the Message

    Dear Dr. Willard McCarty,

    I would like to share with Humanist scholars, a short, but informative
    paper, in which Professor Christine Borgman has mentioned the details of
    Alexandria Digital Earth Prototype Tools..

    Some quotes from the text:-
    "Ultimately, it's not about the technology, it's about behavior"

    "A mental model is a cognitive construction. How do people think about
    what's happening inside the machine? The appropriateness of the model has
    a lot to do with whether you figure out how to use the machine"

    "You can't just put computers in everybody's hands, give all the students
    a laptop and access to the Internet and expect them to learn better,"
    insists Christine Borgman, professor of information studies. "It's not a
    matter of giving people more information, but how to package that
    information, how to organize and disseminate it."

    The holder of the Presidential Chair in Information Studies at UCLA,
    Borgman is UCLA's lead investigator for the national Alexandria Digital
    Earth ProtoType project, or ADEPT. The project began in 1994 as the
    Alexandria Digital Library Project, a four-year, $4-million initiative to
    gather a massive amount of informaiton about the Earth using digital
    collections of everything from maps and images to text and multimedia
    diagrams, all referenced by geographical area. The resulting information
    was used to create a digital model of the planet -- a "Digital Earth," as
    Vice President Al Gore dubbed it.

    "Think of the Digital Earth as a metaphor, as a way to organize
    information," explains Borgman. "You can click on any spot on the globe
    and access any information that can be referenced geographically, whether
    it's census data, flood data, crop data, population movements, toxic-waste
    flows, even historical texts."

    ADEPT is still at the conceptual level, but the plan is to give geography
    instructors tools to help students move away from memorizing facts and,
    instead, concentrate on understanding dynamic processes. "It's more
    important that the student understand how rivers change over time or how
    populations move than to memorize facts about how and when they moved,"
    says Borgman. "The more you can understand about the process, the richer
    the learning experience and the more you can apply in new ways."

    The ADEPT tools will be known as Information Landscape, or "Iscapes," and
    will be bulit around scenarios. How do you manage this flood in Topanga
    Canyon, for instance. Or how do you look at this migration throught
    Northern California? "You might build a lesson around the flood, then put
    a series of data sets behind it, using data collected from NASA and local
    and state authorities. You layer that data and then give students tools so
    they can say what happens if there is more rain or less rain, good
    hill-side plantings, dams built, an earthquake. They can manipulate all
    these different conditions and see what happens."

    For complete reading, see here

    Feedbacks, comments or criticisms are welcome!

    Thanking you.
    Sincerely yours
    Arun Tripathi

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