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Thursday, May 10, 2007
  Thinking with a Word Processor
Thanks to the always stimulating Alex Soojung-Kim Pang of The End of Cyberspace for the link to Kristóf [J. C.] Nyíri (Hungarian Wittgenstinian philosopher) and in particular his (19993) "Thinking with a Word Processor".

I have as yet hardly begun to process the article, indeed this week is so busy with work and Brabara's thesis (to be submitted next week, already) that it will be a while before I can read rather than skim it. One brief extract (one free of heavy philosophical quotes - for Nyíri is a commonsensical everyday philosopher) will give an idea of why I am excited:
Words on the printed page appear clearly and distinctly. The handwritten manuscript however which the author prepares is, as a rule, rather convoluted. If one adds to this that authors tend to experience feelings of intimacy and elation at the sight of their handwriting, the conclusion is difficult to avoid that the writer thinks in a medium less clear than the one in which his readers will think.
Then, remember that I am currently experimenting with a new medium for thinking, the podcast 5 minute Bible, for which I prepare oral text, with only (at most) notes written on PC or the back of an envelope, and edit the text orally in Audacity... This medium for thinking combines elements of the oral world (the thoughts are after all spoken), the written world (notes whether electronic or on scraps of paper) and the edited world of the Word Processor (since Audacity is a sort of Spoken Word Processor).

What fun!


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