Hypertext and the Problem of Literacy Stuart Moulthrop (2005)
Overview <ul><li>Catching Waves </li></ul><ul><li>Misreading Reading </li></ul><ul><li>What the Geeks Know </li></ul><ul><...
Hypertext and Literacy <ul><li>Moulthrop argues that we should define hypertext as the basis for a new version of general ...
Hypertext- a definition <ul><li>Hypertext is text, displayed on a computer, with references (hyperlinks) to other text tha...
Catching Waves <ul><li>Three waves in the history of hypertext: </li></ul><ul><li>Origin of concept and first experimental...
Hypertext as reality, not novelty  <ul><li>“ a communication environment in which virtually all texts are exposed to autom...
Hypertext and print culture <ul><li>in regard to the difference between hypertext and print culture Moulthrop sees the nee...
Misreading Reading <ul><li>Today we may think that digital media and modern technology is widely established after all. Th...
Misreading Reading <ul><li>This report confines reading solely on printed books (drama, fiction, poetry) </li></ul><ul><li...
What the Geeks Know <ul><li>Old media vs new media </li></ul><ul><li>encounters between old and new media are inherently a...
What the Geeks Know <ul><li>Epistemology (theory of knowledge) of electronic text vs conventional writing </li></ul><ul><l...
Literacy in Babylon <ul><li>Moulthrop brings up the connection to Borges and his story “The Lottery in Babylon”, published...
Literacy in Babylon <ul><li>Moulthrop argues that literacy can no longer be ceded to print culture alone </li></ul><ul><li...
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What The Geeks Know Hypertext And Literacy

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What The Geeks Know Hypertext And Literacy

  1. 1. Hypertext and the Problem of Literacy Stuart Moulthrop (2005)
  2. 2. Overview <ul><li>Catching Waves </li></ul><ul><li>Misreading Reading </li></ul><ul><li>What the Geeks Know </li></ul><ul><li>Literacy in Babylon </li></ul>
  3. 3. Hypertext and Literacy <ul><li>Moulthrop argues that we should define hypertext as the basis for a new version of general literacy </li></ul><ul><li>Literacy is currently in a situation of critical change </li></ul><ul><li>traditional understanding of literacy is inadequate for new and complex digital discourse </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;the use of computers to communicate and process information represents a new language with which educators must deal as they have with the languages of mathematics and science&quot; (Robert Logan) </li></ul>
  4. 4. Hypertext- a definition <ul><li>Hypertext is text, displayed on a computer, with references (hyperlinks) to other text that the reader can immediately access, usually by a mouse click or keypress sequence. </li></ul><ul><li>Apart from running text, hypertext may contain tables, images and other presentational devices. Other means of interaction may also be present, such as a bubble with text appearing when the mouse hovers over a particular area, a video clip starting, or a form to complete and submit. </li></ul><ul><li>The most extensive example of hypertext today is the World Wide Web. </li></ul><ul><li>Source: Wikipedia- ‘Hypertext’ </li></ul>
  5. 5. Catching Waves <ul><li>Three waves in the history of hypertext: </li></ul><ul><li>Origin of concept and first experimental systems by pioneers like Nelson, Engelbart and Van Dam </li></ul><ul><li>Widely distributed systems and first examination of their implications due to introduction of personal computers and popularisation of the Internet </li></ul><ul><li>Arrival of the World Wide Web and refinement of existing technologies </li></ul>
  6. 6. Hypertext as reality, not novelty <ul><li>“ a communication environment in which virtually all texts are exposed to automated search, retrieval and hypertext reference”- the ‘archive’ (Dalgaard 2001) </li></ul><ul><li>The term ‘archive’ refers to any application of hypertext </li></ul>
  7. 7. Hypertext and print culture <ul><li>in regard to the difference between hypertext and print culture Moulthrop sees the need to re-examine earlier approaches </li></ul><ul><li>the ‘archive’ and digital media in general have yet to establish legitimacy </li></ul>
  8. 8. Misreading Reading <ul><li>Today we may think that digital media and modern technology is widely established after all. The world wide web expands globally further and we live with hypertext in our everyday life </li></ul><ul><li>According to an American (NEA) report called “Reading at Risk”: </li></ul><ul><li>reading of leisure literature is on decline </li></ul><ul><li>in the next century nobody will still buy fiction and poetry. </li></ul><ul><li>The findings of this report are indicative for a larger problem </li></ul>
  9. 9. Misreading Reading <ul><li>This report confines reading solely on printed books (drama, fiction, poetry) </li></ul><ul><li>reading in context of the electronic archive, like Weblogs, Wikis or even Audiobooks are not incorporated at all in this study </li></ul><ul><li>Electronic media is only seen as a thread to conventional print publishing </li></ul><ul><li>demonstrates the ignorance towards digital technologies, as well as the problem to see the electronic archive as a possibility for literacy to evolve continuously </li></ul>
  10. 10. What the Geeks Know <ul><li>Old media vs new media </li></ul><ul><li>encounters between old and new media are inherently adverse </li></ul><ul><li>> innovation in communication always seems to be problematic </li></ul>
  11. 11. What the Geeks Know <ul><li>Epistemology (theory of knowledge) of electronic text vs conventional writing </li></ul><ul><li>According to Miles “hypertext” belongs not to an economy of scarcity but to a mode of excess”. </li></ul><ul><li>The archive doesn’t know sufficiency, only surfeit. </li></ul><ul><li>> With uncountable documents instantly available, there is an overload of information on the world wide web </li></ul>
  12. 12. Literacy in Babylon <ul><li>Moulthrop brings up the connection to Borges and his story “The Lottery in Babylon”, published in 1941. </li></ul><ul><li>a fictional society in ancient Babylon which reorganises its epistemology around a municipal numbers game </li></ul><ul><li>perhaps God does not play at dice with the universe, perhaps God is the dice. (Moulthrop) </li></ul>
  13. 13. Literacy in Babylon <ul><li>Moulthrop argues that literacy can no longer be ceded to print culture alone </li></ul><ul><li>he argues for a new definition of literacy founded on pathwork in the hypertextual archive </li></ul><ul><li>argues to take up the challenge of reinventing literacy for a world increasingly afflicted by ignorance </li></ul><ul><li>he concedes that such a change in agenda will not automatically fix the widespread misunderstanding of media </li></ul><ul><li>but he is confident that those ideas will tend to exceed initial expectations </li></ul>

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