Friday, September 26, 2008

Impress Your Professor: Roll With It

One of the new trends in information science is the idea that reading is changing. We no longer work our way down the page, taking in the words in a left to right, linear direction. The explosion of technology (namely online technology) means that we read differently: we scan, we see the big picture, we are in a new cloud of text.

Last semester, Dr. Matt Kirschenbaum of Maryland University visited campus for the SLIS Colloquium series. He delivered a fascinating presentation titled "The Remaking of Reading."

It was his presentation I had in mind when my Google reader updated with an entry on a Biblioroll. This nifty little gadget fosters "reading activity in ubiquitous computing environment." The device displays different texts at the same time to encourage comparison and simultaneous reading.

This is a new device but I have an eerie feeling were on the verge of an increasing trend. Do you think more tools like this, which encourage non-linear reading, will start springing up more often? If so, what do you think this means for the activity of reading and how we process information?

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