26 April 2009

Lessons Learned Recently, in Bullets: MiT6 + Dan Dennett

Media in Transition 6 is near its end. Here's what I learned:
  • Some librarians still think the kids these days aren't learning their History; but most people know this is ridiculous.
  • Digital Humanities definitely needs more documentation. And interface design.
  • Andrew Piper's forthcoming book Dreaming in Books will, in fact, be as awesome as it sounds.
  • In attempting to resurrect Marshall McLuhan and Walter Ong, the Gutenberg Parenthesis idea has created a zombie. Ugly, but easy to kill.
And here's what I learned from a recent talk by Daniel Dennett on cultural evolution and the brain as software:
  • It isn't necessary to define culture to talk about culture as if you have.
  • Despite its obvious relevance, media studies is all but absent from the conversation on memetic cultural evolution.
  • Thinkos are like typos, but for ideas. As in: The Gutenberg Parenthesis is a thinko.
  • Dennett has a charming way of deflecting all criticism. Watch and learn.
  • Steven Pinker iz smartt. Droooool.

No comments: