❤️ MinorityPostdoc tweeted at 3rd @WordCampRS Riverside event organized by local Inland Empire community

Liked a tweet by Alberto RocaAlberto Roca (Twitter)

🔖 Integromat – The glue of the internet

Bookmarked Integromat (Integromat)
Integromat is an easy to use, powerful tool with unique features for automating manual processes. Connect your favorite apps, services and devices with each other without having any programming skills.

🔖 Speakers: Round Two | WordCamp Riverside 2019

Bookmarked WordCamp Riverside 2019 Speakers: Round Two by Verious B. Smith III (2019.riverside.wordcamp.org)

This group will join our other speakers for 3 days of sessions on November 8th – 10th. We hope you’ll join us for their sessions. View the Full Schedule Here & Get your ticket today!

Liked Webmention believers... by Tom Critchlow (tomcritchlow.com)
So I got webmentions set up working on my site and Kickscondor replied: Hey, glad you got this going! I completely agree that Webmentions are too hard. However, they’ve been rock solid for me after I got my setup in place. And they were ultimately worth it for me. I’m a believer now. The technol...

Congratulations Tom!

👓 rapid eye movement from dominique o’brien | General Memory Chat | Art of Memory Forum

Read rapid eye movement from dominique o'brien (Art of Memory Forum)
Hi, in a TV-show about all kinds of crazy world records I saw dominique o’brien memorising 50 objects that were placed on some kind of running track. When he was doing this, his eyes moved from side to side in a very fast pace. This reminded me of an incredibly smart IT-guy (I felt like Forrest Gump in comparison) that came to our warehouse to implement a new computer system. If he was asked a very difficult question he would look up in the air and his eyes would behave precisely like those o...

Possibly tangentially related:

  • If you sit on a swivel chair (safer than doing the same thing standing up) and gently place your fingertips on your closed eyes while you turn around and around, you’ll be able to discern that your eyes will still exhibit saccadic movement even though you can’t “see” anything. (Not sure if this is true for the blind, but it’s worth considering who this may not be true for and why.)
  • Rapid Serial Visual Presentation methods for speed reading (Spritz and related apps) work well primarily because they limit saccadic eye movements which take up a proportionally large portion of your reading time. (Ultimately I think there is an upper limit to how fast one can read and comprehend and retain information.)
  • The visual systems of chickens are responsible for their odd walking manner in which they throw their heads forward and then move their body underneath them while their head remains stationary. Essentially while their head is moving, they’re “blind”.

Is it possible that saccades of the eye are tied into our visual processing and memory systems in a manner deeper than we’re consciously aware? Does reading on a page help our comprehension or long term memories more because the words have a location on a page versus RSVP reading methods? Do our mental visualizations (imagination) change depending on these visual/reading methods? What effects to these have on our memories?

Some interesting questions worth pondering/researching.

👓 Trump's Allies Have Been Attacking The Person They Say Is The Whistleblower Since 2017 | BuzzFeed News

Read Trump's Allies Have Been Attacking The Person They Say Is The Whistleblower Since 2017 (BuzzFeed News)
He's been accused of being “pro-Ukraine and anti-Russia.”

👓 Cracking pass codes with De Bruijn sequences | John D. Cook

Read Cracking pass codes with De Bruijn sequences by John D. Cook (johndcook.com)
Suppose you have a keypad that will unlock a door as soon as it sees a specified sequence of four digits. There’s no “enter” key to mark the end of a four-digit sequence, so the four digits could come at any time, though they have to be sequential. So, for example, if the pass code is 9235, if you started entering 1139235… the lock would open as soon as you enter the 5. How long would it take to attack such a lock by brute force? There are 104 possible 4-digit codes, so you could enter 000000010002…99989999 until the lock opens, but there’s a more efficient way. It’s still brute force, but not quite as brute.

An interesting serendipitous read just as I’m coincidentally doing some other combinatorial work relating to Polya and De Bruijn.

👓 More on attacking combination locks | John D. Cook

Read More on attacking combination locks by John D. Cook (johndcook.com)
A couple weeks ago I wrote about how De Bruijn sequences can be used to attack locks where there is no “enter” key, i.e. the lock will open once the right symbols have been entered. Here’s a variation on this theme: what about locks that let you press more than one button at a time?

Originally bookarked on November 06, 2019 at 12:08PM

👓 The Web Falls Apart | Baldur Bjarnason

Read The Web Falls Apart by Baldur Bjarnason (Baldur Bjarnason)
The web's circle has expanded to contain the entire world. But the centre is not holding.

I get where Baldur is coming from and I’m watching the area relatively closely, but I’m just not seeing the thesis from my perspective.

🔖 Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Bookmarked Things Fall Apart (The African Trilogy, #1) by Chinua Achebe (Penguin Books)

Nominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American Read

Things Fall Apart
 is the first of three novels in Chinua Achebe's critically acclaimed African Trilogy. It is a classic narrative about Africa's cataclysmic encounter with Europe as it establishes a colonial presence on the continent. Told through the fictional experiences of Okonkwo, a wealthy and fearless Igbo warrior of Umuofia in the late 1800s, Things Fall Apart explores one man's futile resistance to the devaluing of his Igbo traditions by British political andreligious forces and his despair as his community capitulates to the powerful new order.

With more than 20 million copies sold and translated into fifty-seven languages, Things Fall Apart provides one of the most illuminating and permanent monuments to African experience. Achebe does not only capture life in a pre-colonial African village, he conveys the tragedy of the loss of that world while broadening our understanding of our contemporary realities.

h/t to Greg McVerry who mentioned it in passing.

🔖 The use of the geometrical playing-cards, as also A discourse of the mechanick powers. By Monsi. Des-Cartes. | Beineke Library

Bookmarked The use of the geometrical playing-cards, as also A discourse of the mechanick powers. By Monsi. Des-Cartes. Translated from his own manuscript copy. (brbl-dl.library.yale.edu)
Call Number:
Creator: Descartes, René, 1596-1650
Language:
Date: 1697.
Publisher: Printed and sold by J. Moxon at the Atlas in Warwicklane,
Subjects:
Genre:
Type of Resource:
Description:
Signatures: [A]¹B-F⁸G³.
The wrapper for the cards has title: Geometre and the mechanick powers represented in a pack of playing cards, made and sold by J Moxon att the Attlas in Warwick lane London.
First part (p. 1-53) probably written by Joseph Moxon.
BEIN K8 D44 Rg697: Imperfect: t.p. and p. 85 badly mutilated and mounted; wrapper frayed and mounted.
Physical Description:
1 p.l., 85 p. ; 17 cm. and 52 cards (in engr. wrapper) 9 x 6 cm.
Rights:
The use of this image may be subject to the copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) or to site license or other rights management terms and conditions. The person using the image is liable for any infringement.
Curatorial Area: Beinecke Library
Catalog Record:
Source Digital Format:
High Resolution (image/tiff)
Object ID: 11529500
Download:
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h/t Dan Cohen via Humane Ingenuity 8: Ebooks: It’s Complicated

This was probably a great memory exercise for Monsi. Des-Cartes in simply making these. But on first blush, I have to think that he’s also creating a memory palace of sorts for the information itself! Because the deck of cards can be a predetermined path of sorts, going through the deck in the prescribed order he’s laid out allows it to be a journey to which he’s attaching the images on the cards as well as encoding the information within the text by which to memorize it. To me this is very reminiscent of the “Sermon on the Six Wings of the Seraph” described as:

The earliest of the four preachers’ arts is the so-called sermon on the six wings of the seraph, using as the organizing figure the six-winged creature described in Isaiah 6. Ascribed to the late twelfth-century Parisian master Alan of Lille, it became quickly popular as one of the model sermons of his ‘‘art of preaching.’’ But it is not a sermon. It is instead an art for preachers needing to invent sermons. It describes how to use sets of five themes on each of six basic subjects, or res, all keyed to a memorable organizing ‘‘picture.’’ Only the first of these themes is developed as an actual sermon might be, evidently to serve as a model. The work as a whole provides a fine example of memoria rerum and is related, through centuries of (mostly orally disseminated) classroom tradition, to the picture-like example of the technique of memoria rerum used in a courtroom setting, which is described at the beginning of the first century B.C.E. in the Rhetorica ad Herennium (3.20.33).
The Medieval Craft of Memory: An Anthology of Texts and Pictures, Edited by Mary Carruthers and Jan M. Ziolkowski (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2002)

Color copy of an illuminated manuscript featuring a six winged seraph with memory prompts written on individual feathers via the Beineke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University from The tower of virtues and the orchard of spiritual grace MS 416, fol. 8r.

👓 Facebook sold a rival-squashing move as privacy policy, documents reveal | the Guardian

Read Facebook sold a rival-squashing move as privacy policy, documents reveal (the Guardian)
Documents from a 2015 lawsuit allege that the tech giant’s policies were anticompetitive and misrepresented to the public

👓 Humane Ingenuity 8: Ebooks: It’s Complicated | Dan Cohen

Read Humane Ingenuity 8: Ebooks: It's Complicated by Dan CohenDan Cohen (buttondown.email)
In this issue, I want to open a conversation about a technology of our age that hasn’t quite worked out the way we all had hoped—and by we, I mean those of us who care about the composition and transmission of ideas, which I believe includes everyone on this list. Twenty years ago, literary critic Sven Birkerts reviewed the new technology of ebooks and e-readers for the short-lived internet magazine Feed. They sent him a Rocket eBook and a SoftBook, and he duly turned them on and settled into his comfy chair. What followed, however, was anything but comfy:

Image from a deck of cards by Rene Descartes

René Descartes designed a deck of playing cards that also functioned as flash cards to learn geometry and mechanics. (King of Clubs from The use of the geometrical playing-cards, as also A discourse of the mechanick powers. By Monsi. Des-Cartes. Translated from his own manuscript copy. Printed and sold by J. Moxon at the Atlas in Warwick Lane, London. Via the Beinecke Library, from which you can download the entire deck.)

My immediate thought is that this deck of cards was meant as a memory palace. I’m curious what training in rhetoric/memory methods Descartes must have had?
November 06, 2019 at 08:49PM


We are beginning a renovation of our main library at Northeastern University, Snell Library, and have been talking with architects (some of them very well-known), and I’ve found the discussions utterly invigorating. I would like to find some way to blog or newsletter about the process we will go through over the next few years, and to think aloud about the (re)design and (future) function of the library. I’m not sure if that should occur in this space or elsewhere, although the thought of launching another outlet fills me with dread. Let me know if this topic would interest you, and if I should include it here.

Dan, this is definitely interesting. Please include it here or on your main site!!!
November 06, 2019 at 08:43PM


But wait, there’s more. Much more. We generally encounter four different acquisition models (my thanks to Janet Morrow of our library for this outline): 1) outright purchase, just like a print book, easy peasy, generally costs a lot even though it’s just bits (we pay an average of over $40 per book this way), which gives us perpetual access with the least digital rights management (DRM) on the ebooks, which has an impact on sustainable access over time; 2) subscription access: you need to keep paying each year to get access, and the provider can pull titles on you at any time, plus you also get lots of DRM, but there’s a low cost per title (~$1 a book per year); 3) demand-driven/patron-driven acquisition: you don’t get the actual ebook, just a bibliographic record for your library’s online system, until someone chooses to download a book, or reads some chunk of it online, which then costs you, say ~$5; 4) evidence-based acquisitions, in which we pay a set cost for unlimited access to a set of titles for a year and then at the end of the year we can use our deposit to buy some of the titles (< $1/book/year for the set, and then ~$60/book for those we purchase).

Nice to see this laid out. I’ve never seen a general overview of how this system works for libraries.

I’ve always wondered what it cost my local public library to loan me an e-book whether I read it or not.
November 06, 2019 at 08:40PM


It is worth asking why ebooks and e-readers like the Kindle treaded water after swimming a couple of laps. I’m not sure I can fully diagnose what happened (I would love to hear your thoughts), but I think there are many elements, all of which interact as part of the book production and consumption ecosystem.

For me, and potentially for a majority of others, our memories have evolved to be highly location specific. It’s far easier for me to remember what I’ve read when I read a physical book. I can often picture what I was reading at the top, middle, or bottom of the left or right page. This fact in addition to how far I am in the book gives me a better idea of where I am with respect to a text.

These ideas are very subtle and so heavily ingrained in us that they’re not very apparent to many, if at all.

See also Knowledge and Power in Prehistoric Societies: Orality, Memory and the Transmission of Culture by Lynne Kelly (Cambridge University Press, 2015)
November 06, 2019 at 08:32PM

🔖 kevinmarks tweeted @jimmy_wales Come talk to the #indieweb people about scaling things and interop https://t.co/ePOzrtakPb

Liked a tweet by Kevin Marks on TwitterKevin Marks on Twitter (Twitter)