Multimodal Narratives Conference 27-28 April 2007

xposted at musings
Saturday marked the second and final day of the Narrative and Multimodality conference organised by Dr. Ruth Page and held at UCE.

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The Internet and Culture 2.0

Bryan Appleyard has written an interesting article for todays Sunday Times entitled The web is dead; long live the web which explores some arguments from Andrew Keen's forthcoming book The Cult of the Amateur: How Today’s Internet is Killing Our Culture and Assaulting our Economy.

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Visual map of the Blogosphere

By Matthew Hurst, from Discovery. Some interesting analysis there of the major blog hotspots and islands of activity.
It would be great to identify individual blogs and their links on a live 3D visualisation…


In relation to the recent discussion about the either/or mentality regarding the future of the book (for an example read this account of the recent Digitise or Die event), I thought it worth noting some comments taken from a video about the Unbound: Advancing Book Publishing in a Digital World event held in January 2007.

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Twitter, the author and the blog

I was following some blogging links when something brought me up short. The screen grab is from Christy Dena's excellent blog on transmedia media entertainment and concerned the setting up of a book fair in Second Life. Surely enough to make Margaret Attwood melt in a bath.
What made me pause, though, was her twitter entry. Twitter has been getting a lot of attention and turns up fairly frequently in blogs. Normally I pay minimal attention to it but here it has given the author a presence in the blog that I found quite stunning: to the extent that I found myself paying more attention to the tweet than to the entry.
Meg Pickard, an online anthropologist, has discussed the notion that, in blogs, context is king. I would be tempted to go one step forward and try to elide the notion of what is text and what is context in a blog. Paying attention to transliteracy is, I suspect, one way of doing that. Embedding the author in a blog (potentially on a minute by minute basis with twitter) provides a text that really is digitally native and inherently transliterate.

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Mike Wesch – how an academic became Top of the Pops at YouTube

Here's a nice story to cheer us up after the Atwood disappointment. Yesterday at Web2expo I heard anthropologist Mike Wesch talk about his now ubiquitous video The Machine is Us/ing Us, discussed by Bruce Mason elsewhere on this blog. . It was enjoyable because Wesch, who said to me at the start 'it's great to meet another academic here', is a very unassuming guy who spends most of his time teaching at Kansas State University and the rest of his time studying a tribe in Papua, New Guinea, who have recently been introduced to reading and writing and whose experiences have greatly informed his approach to what we would call transliterate practice.

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Digitise or Die – A Personal Reflection

chairsAs I entered the empty auditorium (I was the first there) I paused and took in my surroundings: padded leatherette seats for the audience, modern, sleek white armchairs for the panel, a bottle of water next to each long-necked microphone, dimmed lights, shining stage, and a background image centered behind the panel announcing the speakers and the title of the talk. I then settled in, ready for "compelling arguments" which, I read, would "leave [me] with a renewed enthusiasm for books and vowing to spend less time online."
Well…that didn't happen.

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Icon soup

Found on a blog.
Answers on a postcard, please.

User Generated Content T-shirt at Web2Expo

This is my Web2Expo T-shirt. Each one was produced with a blank space in which you could finish the sentence 'Web 2.0 is..' Of course, I tagged mine with transliteracy. What else could it be? Unless transliteracy.

Web 2.0 definition still pretty incoherent

Yesterday Dion Hinchcliffe discussed definitions of Web 2.0 and recommended Tim O'Reilly's super-compact definition because, he says, 'we can now fit this into our minds'
"Networked applications that explicitly leverage network effects."
Well, maybe geek companies can fit that sentence into their minds, but I doubt that it means much to the rest of the world. I prefer Hinchcliffe's own definition 'A set of clearly apparent widespread new trends'. Web 2.0 is not a technology, he emphasised, but a change in behaviour due to the scale of the web and its audience, and whose core principle is harnessing collective intelligence. That's better.