Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Has anything in the world of computers and composition changed since 2001?

I just came across Jeff Rice's comments from a "Town Hall Meeting" at the 2001 Computers and Writing conference. This meeting would have been in the summer of 2001, before 9/11, but I am not sure that much has changed in the world of computers and writing since then. Jeff's final point in the talk is this:

I could suggest that in the future we will all have wireless hand held computers, use holograms to communicate with students (no classrooms – we beam ourselves out to their private homes), or something else that appears grand and promising. But I don't think that we are yet prepared to work with what exists now – to teach HTML, Flash, Photoshop, Premiere, etc. not merely to create web designers and graphic artists, but to teach innovation and invention principles as well critique – the basis of composition. I would instead call upon future computers and writing scholarship to explore new writing practices, to not be afraid to critique itself and its current usage of technology, and to search out new models for electronic writing, models that I think come from various areas like literature, theory, science, music, and art.

7 comments:

Michael Faris said...

Yeah, sounds like it could have been written today.

Jeff said...

Dang. That is a blast from the past.

Kevin Brooks said...

You guys must be avoiding course prep too! Seems like "we" might have skipped over Jeff's list of tools / mediums; what "we" have latched on to, that seems to have changed things, is social networking. No, wait, that probably isn't true either. The Lunsford and Lunsford article in CCC updating the Ma and Pa Kettle research reported that they still encountered primarily textual material. Your McLuhan argument is holding, Jeff; we are still the discipline of paper, the discipline of words and text. I'm guilty too. Maybe not this semester, maybe everything will be different this year. *cough, cough*

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