Replied to Monks, a polymath and an invention made by two people at the same time. It’s all in the history of the index by Aaron DavisAaron Davis (Read Write Collect)
Anna Kelsey-Sugg and Julie Street discuss Dennis Duncan research in the index. He explains how the practice evolved separately in Paris and Oxford during 1230. Although the two inventions were not connected, they were both associated with the rise of the university and the lecture. In the early 13th...
Great find Aaron. Thanks for the ping.

I’ve gone back further than this for the commonplace and the florilegium which helped to influence their creation, though I’ve not delved into the specific invention or general use of indices in the space heavily. I suspected that they grew out of the tradition of using headwords, though I’m not sure that indices became more popular until the paper by John Locke in 1689 (in French) or 1706 (in English).

I’ll put Dr. Duncan’s book into the hopper and see what he’s got to say on the topic.

Read The Other Invisible Hand (NOEMA)
Economics and evolution are basically in the same business: Both are all about productivity selection, though one has been at it for billions of years longer than the other. Both involve “invisible hand” magic — intricate, unplanned, “self-or...
Folks who have been reading David Wengrow and David Graeber’s The Dawn of Everything are sure to appreciate the sentiment here which pulls in the ideas of biology and evolution to expand on their account and makes it a much more big history sort of thesis.
 
I’m reminded of Kate Raworth’s excellent Donut Economics as a potential remedy.
 

Raw capitalism mimics the logic of cancer within our body politic.

Bookmarked I Like Index Cards by Aegir Aegir (Aegir.org)
I've been meaning to do some kind of index card style template for the site for ages and never got round to it. Now I have. I’m quite pleased with it. CSS repeating gradient lines and all that. 
An absolutely beautiful design for short notes. This is the sort of theme that will appeal to zettelkasten users who are building digital gardens. A bit of the old mixed in with the new.

Pete Moor in // pimoore.ca ()

Replied to The Dawn of Everything – Part 1 by Miriam Ronzoni (Crooked Timber)
I recently finished reading* The Dawn of Everything by David Graeber and David Wengrow; I enjoyed it very much indeed. I thought I’d write a two parts review for CT, and here’s the first – I will p…
I’ve only begun reading the text for a book club being run by historian Dan Allosso who is also doing an experiment in a communally shared wiki/notebook platform Obsidian, but I’m quite curious about the Neolithic pieces relating to the inhabitants at Stonehenge. In particular, I’ve recently finished Lynne Kelly’s research in Knowledge and Power in Prehistoric Societies: Orality, Memory and the Transmission of Culture (Cambridge University Press, 2015) in which she touches on the primary orality of those peoples and the profound impact that settling into sedentary lifeways may have had on their culture. If she’s correct, then that settlement was dramatically “expensive” and more complex than we’ve been led to believe. This may have had confounding issues within their society as it grew and flourished. I would suspect that Graeber and Wengrow don’t touch on this portion of the complexity, but it may support their general thesis. I’ll try to report back as I get deeper into the topic.

Incidentally, if folks want to join this Obsidian book club on this text, it’s just starting and is comprised of a number of academics and researchers in a vein similar to CT. A quick web search should uncover the details to join.

Read Digg users are dumber than goldfish by markpilgrimmarkpilgrim (Dive Into Mark)
So what happened was, I was talking with Joe about the fact that Dive Into Python appeared on the
Users of some aggregation sites collectively forget prior articles and news and resubmit them at intervals. This may give rise to the colloquialism “goldfish effect”.
Read - Want to Read: Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States by James C. Scott (Yale University Press)
Why did humans abandon hunting and gathering for sedentary communities dependent on livestock and cereal grains, and governed by precursors of today’s states? Most people believe that plant and animal domestication allowed humans, finally, to settle down and form agricultural villages, towns, and states, which made possible civilization, law, public order, and a presumably secure way of living. But archaeological and historical evidence challenges this narrative. The first agrarian states, says James C. Scott, were born of accumulations of domestications: first fire, then plants, livestock, subjects of the state, captives, and finally women in the patriarchal family—all of which can be viewed as a way of gaining control over reproduction. Scott explores why we avoided sedentism and plow agriculture, the advantages of mobile subsistence, the unforeseeable disease epidemics arising from crowding plants, animals, and grain, and why all early states are based on millets and cereal grains and unfree labor. He also discusses the “barbarians” who long evaded state control, as a way of understanding continuing tension between states and nonsubject peoples.
Recommended by Dan Allosso while we were reading The Dawn of Everything.
Read - Want to Read: Wild Songs, Sweet Songs: The Albanian Epic in the Collections of Milman Parry and Albert B. Lord by Nicola Scaldaferri (ed.) (Harvard University Press)
In the 1930s, Milman Parry and Albert B. Lord, two pioneering scholars of oral poetry, conducted adventurous fieldwork in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia and northern Albania, collecting singularly important examples of Albanian epic song. Wild Songs, Sweet Songs presents these materials, which have not previously been published, for the first time.
Read Advent of Bloggers 2021 by James (James' Coffee Blog)
For the last week or two, I have been thinking whether there is a December blogging series I could take on, similar to how Advent of Code publishes a new coding challenge every day throughout Advent. I thought that I would just continue with my regular blogging until yesterday when I came up with an...
The idea of an Advent of Bloggers is a heartwarming one.

Reminiscent of N-day challenges: https://indieweb.org/100_days#December_and_or_24_Days

Read - Reading: Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer (Milkweed Editions )
As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer as been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these lenses of knowledge together to show that the awakening of a wider ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings are we capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learning to give our own gifts in return.
  • 15%

Learning the grammar of animacy.
What a sea change of perspective!! English speakers have trouble with other humans’ pronouns, wait until they need to pronoun animals and bodies of water.

Read a thread by @Klonick (Twitter)
I keep hearing more horror stories like this about Hertz. Where is the actual government regulation to protect consumers en masse? Without protections against corporations like this, their service just becomes a tax on society which only benefits the corporation.
Read - Reading: Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer (Milkweed Editions )
As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer as been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these lenses of knowledge together to show that the awakening of a wider ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings are we capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learning to give our own gifts in return.
  • 6%

Read “Skywoman Falling”
It’s interesting to compare and contrast the origin stories of Skywoman and Eve (of Adam & Eve). Also interesting to see the cultural differences which arise from these philosophies.

Read Aboriginal education and The Memory Code by Lynne KellyLynne Kelly (lynnekelly.com.au)
I was so pleased to receive this email from Sue Norman telling me how The Memory Code had been part of the ground work for this wonderful project on revitalising Aboriginal languages. The linked report is from the ABC. It is so rewarding to get endorsement from Aboriginal organisations.
Read - Want to Read: Rationality: What It Is, Why It Seems Scarce, Why It Matters by Steven Pinker (Allen Lane )
In the twenty-first century, humanity is reaching new heights of scientific understanding - and at the same time appears to be losing its mind. How can a species that discovered vaccines for Covid-19 in less than a year produce so much fake news, quack cures and conspiracy theorizing? In Rationality, Pinker rejects the cynical cliché that humans are simply an irrational species - cavemen out of time fatally cursed with biases, fallacies and illusions. After all, we discovered the laws of nature, lengthened and enriched our lives and set the benchmarks for rationality itself. Instead, he explains, we think in ways that suit the low-tech contexts in which we spend most of our lives, but fail to take advantage of the powerful tools of reasoning we have built up over millennia: logic, critical thinking, probability, causal inference, and decision-making under uncertainty. These tools are not a standard part of our educational curricula, and have never been presented clearly and entertainingly in a single book - until now. Rationality matters. It leads to better choices in our lives and in the public sphere, and is the ultimate driver of social justice and moral progress. Brimming with insight and humour, Rationality will enlighten, inspire and empower.
Read - Finished Reading: The New Education: How to Revolutionize the University to Prepare Students for a World In Flux by Cathy N. DavidsonCathy N. Davidson (Basic Books)
Our current system of higher education dates to the period from 1865 to 1925. It was in those decades that the nation's new universities created grades and departments, majors and minors, all in an attempt to prepare young people for a world transformed by the telegraph and the Model T. As Cathy N. Davidson argues in The New Education, this approach to education is wholly unsuited to the era of the gig economy. From the Ivy League to community colleges, she introduces us to innovators who are remaking college for our own time by emphasizing student-centered learning that values creativity in the face of change above all. The New Education ultimately shows how we can teach students not only to survive but to thrive amid the challenges to come.