research on connectivity, archives
and searching
the theories and methods of how to study, experience and build archives

— Janet H. Murray | Inventing the medium
The MIT Press (2011) pp. 253 - 288: Using Standardized Metadata to Share Knowledge

Whatever digital artifact we are designing — whether it is a marketing and retail space for a toy seller or a repository for data about stars at the farthest reaches of the cosmos — we can approach the task as an opportunity to advance the encyclopedic potential of the medium. The aggregation of media archives in digital form offers a historic challenge to the designer to turn an exponential increase in our inspiration and transmission capacity into a comparable increase in human knowledge by inventing and refining more powerful conventions of information organization.

— Joseph Michael Reagle Jr. | Good Faith Collaboration: The Culture of Wikipedia
The MIT Press (2010) pp. 137 - 168: Encyclopedic Anxiety

Wikipedia, and the collaborative way in which it is produced, is at the center of a heated debate. Much as reference works might inspire passionate dedication in their contributors, they also, seemingly, can inspire passionate disparagement. In 2004 Michael Gorman, former president of the American Library Association, wrote an op-ed criticizing Google and its book-scanning project; he was surprised by the negative online response to his piece, but this only prompted him to redouble his attack a few years later. In 2007 he focused on blogs and Wikipedia, decrying the effects of the “digital tsunami” on learning.

— Richard Graham | A History of Search Engines
Institute of Network Cultures (2014)

The book, entitled "Society of the Query Reader: Reflections on Web Search", contains 20 essays by various scholars, critics, theorists and artists from a wide variety of disciplines on the theme of Search Engines. Looking up something online is one of the most common applications of the web. Whether with a laptop or smartphone, we search the web from wherever we are, at any given moment. ‘Googling’ has become so entwined in our daily routines that we rarely question it. However, search engines such as Google or Bing determine what part of the web we get to see, shaping our knowledge and perceptions of the world. But there is a world beyond Google – geographically, culturally, and technologically.

— Andrew Hoskins | The mediatization of memory, Mediatization of Communication
De Gruyter (2009)

This chapter takes " mediatization " as the process by which everyday life is increasingly embedded in and penetrated by connectivity: the process of shifting interconnected individual, social, and cultural dependency on media, for mainte-nance, survival, and growth. Hoskins takes the emergent sociotechnical flux as the principal shaper of 21st century remembering through the medial gathering and splintering of individual, social, and cultural imaginaries, increasingly networked through portable and pervasive digital media and communication devices so that a new "living archive" is becom-ing the organizing and habitual condition of memory. So, memory's biological, social, and cultural divisions and distinctions seem increasingly blurred if not collapsed under the key active dynamic of the emergent media-memorial relation-ship: hyperconnectivity. And although counter-trajectories of a mainstream media still persist to challenge the fragmentary and diffused character of memory in post-scarcity culture, the openness of mediatized memory offers an alternative memory boom: an unfinished past and a vitalized future. (abstracts, Hoskins)

— Olia Lialina and Dragan Espenschied | Digital Folklore
Merz & Solitude (2009)

As the first book of its kind, this reader contains essays and projects investigating many different facets of Digital Folklore: online amateur culture, DIY electronics, dirtstyle, typo-nihilism, memes, teapots, penis enlargement …Technical innovations shape only a small part of computer and network culture. It doesn't matter much who invented the microprocessor, the mouse, TCP/IP or the World Wide Web; nor does it matter what ideas were behind these inventions. What matters is who uses them. Only when users start to express themselves with these technical innovations do they truly become relevant to culture at large.

Users' endeavors, like glittering star backgrounds, photos of cute kittens and rainbow gradients, are mostly derided as kitsch or in the most extreme cases, postulated as the end of culture itself. In fact this evolving vernacular, created by users for users, is the most important, beautiful and misunderstood language of new media. (summary)

— Bob Duggan | Is the Future of Museums Really Online?
Big Think (2015)

The question of whether museums (and the rest of the world) will go online is moot. The real questions are how and how soon. Will museums keep pace with the world around them and remain relevant to new generations raised on tablets? Or will they lag behind and hope for a nostalgic niche market similar to those who market vinyl albums to music lovers who can’t abide iTunes? Cooper-Hewitt’s transformation may or may not be a model for other museums, but at least it’s a model to keep the discussion and questioning going.

— Robinson Meyer | The Museum of the Future Is Here
The Atlantic (2015)

To people who photograph placards when they visit museums—a group to which I belong—the pen is a godsend. It anticipates a need and executes it; it is a straightforward, useful object. But it’s something more. The pen does something that countless companies, organizations, archives, and libraries are trying to do: It bridges the digital and the physical.

— David Anderson, Christoph Vogtherr, Maria Balshaw and Robert Hewison
What should our museums look like in 2020? | The Guardian (2015)

Four industry experts share their views on the past, present and future of museums.

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