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Trapper Callender

As We May Think - The Atlantic (July 1945) - 2 views

    Article written in 1945 by Vannevar Bush. In his article, Bush described a theoretical machine he called a "memex," which was to enhance human memory by allowing the user to store and retrieve documents linked by associations. This associative linking was very similar to what is known today as hypertext. Ted Nelson who later did pioneering work with hypertext credited Bush as his main influence. Others, such as J.C.R. Licklider and Douglas Engelbart have also paid homage to Bush.
Trapper Callender

Man-Computer Symbiosis - 2 views

  • In short, it seems worthwhile to avoid argument with (other) enthusiasts for artificial intelligence by conceding dominance in the distant future of cerebration to machines alone.
  • There will nevertheless be a fairly long interim during which the main intellectual advances will be made by men and computers working together in intimate association. A multidisciplinary study group, examining future research and development problems of the Air Force, estimated that it would be 1980 before developments in artificial intelligence make it possible for machines alone to do much thinking or problem solving of military significance. That would leave, say, five years to develop man-computer symbiosis and 15 years to use it. The 15 may be 10 or 500, but those years should be intellectually the most creative and exciting in the history of mankind.
  • It is often said that programming for a computing machine forces one to think clearly, that it disciplines the thought process. If the user can think his problem through in advance, symbiotic association with a computing machine is not necessary.
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  • They would be easier to solve, and they could be solved faster, through an intuitively guided trial-and-error procedure in which the computer cooperated, turning up flaws in the reasoning or revealing unexpected turns in the solution.
  • Poincare anticipated the frustration of an important group of would-be computer users when he said, "The question is not, 'What is the answer?' The question is, 'What is the question?'" One of the main aims of man-computer symbiosis is to bring the computing machine effectively into the formulative parts of technical problems.
  • It is to bring computing machines effectively into processes of thinking that must go on in "real time," time that moves too fast to permit using computers in conventional ways.
  • To think in interaction with a computer in the same way that you think with a colleague whose competence supplements your own will require much tighter coupling between man and machine than is suggested by the example and than is possible today.
  • Throughout the period I examined, in short, my "thinking" time was devoted mainly to activities that were essentially clerical or mechanical: searching, calculating, plotting, transforming, determining the logical or dynamic consequences of a set of assumptions or hypotheses, preparing the way for a decision or an insight. Moreover, my choices of what to attempt and what not to attempt were determined to an embarrassingly great extent by considerations of clerical feasibility, not intellectual capability.
  • the operations that fill most of the time allegedly devoted to technical thinking are operations that can be performed more effectively by machines than by men.
  • If those problems can be solved in such a way as to create a symbiotic relation between a man and a fast information-retrieval and data-processing machine, however, it seems evident that the cooperative interaction would greatly improve the thinking process.
  • Computing machines can do readily, well, and rapidly many things that are difficult or impossible for man, and men can do readily and well, though not rapidly, many things that are difficult or impossible for computers. That suggests that a symbiotic cooperation, if successful in integrating the positive characteristics of men and computers, would be of great value. The differences in speed and in language, of course, pose difficulties that must be overcome.
  • Men will fill in the gaps, either in the problem solution or in the computer program, when the computer has no mode or routine that is applicable in a particular circumstance.
  • Clearly, for the sake of efficiency and economy, the computer must divide its time among many users. Timesharing systems are currently under active development. There are even arrangements to keep users from "clobbering" anything but their own personal programs.
  • It seems reasonable to envision, for a time 10 or 15 years hence, a "thinking center" that will incorporate the functions of present-day libraries together with anticipated advances in information storage and retrieval and the symbiotic functions suggested earlier in this paper. The picture readily enlarges itself into a network of such centers, connected to one another by wide-band communication lines and to individual users by leased-wire services. In such a system, the speed of the computers would be balanced, and the cost of the gigantic memories and the sophisticated programs would be divided by the number of users.
  • The first thing to face is that we shall not store all the technical and scientific papers in computer memory. We may store the parts that can be summarized most succinctly-the quantitative parts and the reference citations-but not the whole. Books are among the most beautifully engineered, and human-engineered, components in existence, and they will continue to be functionally important within the context of man-computer symbiosis. (Hopefully, the computer will expedite the finding, delivering, and returning of books.)
  • The second point is that a very important section of memory will be permanent: part indelible memory and part published memory. The computer will be able to write once into indelible memory, and then read back indefinitely, but the computer will not be able to erase indelible memory. (It may also over-write, turning all the 0's into l's, as though marking over what was written earlier.) Published memory will be "read-only" memory. It will be introduced into the computer already structured. The computer will be able to refer to it repeatedly, but not to change it.
  • The basic dissimilarity between human languages and computer languages may be the most serious obstacle to true symbiosis.
  • In short: instructions directed to computers specify courses; instructions-directed to human beings specify goals.
  • We may in due course see a serious effort to develop computer programs that can be connected together like the words and phrases of speech to do whatever computation or control is required at the moment. The consideration that holds back such an effort, apparently, is that the effort would produce nothing that would be of great value in the context of existing computers. It would be unrewarding to develop the language before there are any computing machines capable of responding meaningfully to it.
  • By and large, in generally available computers, however, there is almost no provision for any more effective, immediate man-machine communication than can be achieved with an electric typewriter.
  • Displays seem to be in a somewhat better state than controls. Many computers plot graphs on oscilloscope screens, and a few take advantage of the remarkable capabilities, graphical and symbolic, of the charactron display tube. Nowhere, to my knowledge, however, is there anything approaching the flexibility and convenience of the pencil and doodle pad or the chalk and blackboard used by men in technical discussion.
  • 2) Computer-Posted Wall Display: In some technological systems, several men share responsibility for controlling vehicles whose behaviors interact. Some information must be presented simultaneously to all the men, preferably on a common grid, to coordinate their actions. Other information is of relevance only to one or two operators. There would be only a confusion of uninterpretable clutter if all the information were presented on one display to all of them. The information must be posted by a computer, since manual plotting is too slow to keep it up to date.
  • Laboratory experiments have indicated repeatedly that informal, parallel arrangements of operators, coordinating their activities through reference to a large situation display, have important advantages over the arrangement, more widely used, that locates the operators at individual consoles and attempts to correlate their actions through the agency of a computer. This is one of several operator-team problems in need of careful study.
  • 3) Automatic Speech Production and Recognition: How desirable and how feasible is speech communication between human operators and computing machines?
  • Yet there is continuing interest in the idea of talking with computing machines.
  • In large part, the interest stems from realization that one can hardly take a military commander or a corporation president away from his work to teach him to type. If computing machines are ever to be used directly by top-level decision makers, it may be worthwhile to provide communication via the most natural means, even at considerable cost.
  • It seems reasonable, therefore, for computer specialists to be the ones who interact directly with computers in business offices.
  • Certainly, if the equipment were already developed, reliable, and available, it would be used.
    Man-computer symbiosis is an expected development in cooperative interaction between men and electronic computers. It will involve very close coupling between the human and the electronic members of the partnership. The main aims are 1) to let computers facilitate formulative thinking as they now facilitate the solution of formulated problems, and 2) to enable men and computers to cooperate in making decisions and controlling complex situations without inflexible dependence on predetermined programs. In the anticipated symbiotic partnership, men will set the goals, formulate the hypotheses, determine the criteria, and perform the evaluations. Computing machines will do the routinizable work that must be done to prepare the way for insights and decisions in technical and scientific thinking. Preliminary analyses indicate that the symbiotic partnership will perform intellectual operations much more effectively than man alone can perform them. Prerequisites for the achievement of the effective, cooperative association include developments in computer time sharing, in memory components, in memory organization, in programming languages, and in input and output equipment.
Mike Wesch

Anonymous (group) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - 0 views

  • In 06/09/1998, unknown coder, Amezou-shi (Mr Amezou) opened the first Japanese floating threat BBS and called it "Amezou". Mr Amezou is a nickname and his real identity is still unknown to this day. What is known in Japan as Nanashi Warudo and it's English offspring like 4chan are direct offspring of Amezou. Floating message system introduced a system where more popular thread was "bump"ed (ageru) and unpopular thread get eliminated eventually. This has made it easier to find popular threads as well as reducing the server load of the site. Since use of BBS was still limited to techies, much of discussion centred around underground IT topics such as Warez. However as the popularity of Amezou increase, the site come to suffer increasingly from shut down as well as antonymous vandalism, which made many threads unreadable. Several posting of violent threat against Mr Amezou caused eventual shut down of Amezou. Before the site was shut down, Mr Amezou made a plea to the community to create alternative site similar to Amezou. The community responded and many refuge sites was created using the same program. One of these message board was called "2 Channel" created by Hiroyuki (Hiroyuki Nishimura). Hiroyuki named his site 2Channel as the second channel of the first, i.e. Amezou. He recruited seasoned participants as Administrators to watch out for vandalism in each board, but aside from that, the thread remained essentially unmoderated and any kind of speech was permitted. One of the main innovation of Hiroyuki was to expand general interest section of message board. Previously, most of message board thread was dominated by tech topics, with only one board assigned to "General/Off topic". Hiroyuki instead created various board for non tech topic such as discussion board for current affairs. Due to unmoderated nature of the site, 2Chanel became free-for-all, no-holds-barred discussion boards for general topic.
  • All information is treated equally; only an accurate argument will work.
  • Otaku topic was called Futaba Channel, which eventually became floating thread type image board. The English version of Futaba channel became the dominant Anonymous image board in English known as 4chan.
    The concept of anonymous originate in 90s. Japan was relatively late embracing IT. ISDN was just about to be introduced and the whole internet was largely of underground phenomenon especially in early 90s. Many information/data posted in internet involved hacking, warez, copyrighted material, pornography including child pornography, snuff, drugs, bombs, etc as well as no-hold-barred discussion which was also common sight in USENET in English Due to lax data protection law as well as the fact that most community generated site were owned by an individual, people were still reluctant to even create avatar account. More importantly, many of these site start as a secret retreat from the owner's real life, where s/he can be away from his job, his social standing, obligation, etc. Consequently, the owner of site often remained anonymous but with a designated nickname such as Kanrinin-san (Mr/Mrs Admin). Consequently, forum which requires registration never really took off in Japan. Later, these anonymous message board including USENET, which preceded it, came to be know collectively as "Nanashi Warudo" (The World of Anonymous, Nanashi=NoName=Anonymous), which in turn was mock of "Ayashii Warudo" "The World of Suspicious/Dubious". The armature anonymous message board had number limitation, most notably the limitation of server capacity. Due to higher cost of bandwidth in 90s, dominant form of community site was text based and did not allow transfer of image. Secondly, only form fund to run the site was from the owner's day job and meagre earning from (often pornographic) banner ad. Moreover, free and open nature of anonymous nature of the posting made any community message board prone to sudden increase in traffic which result in frequent shut down of any popular message board. Moreover, the simple queing of thread in the board made it difficult to find a target thread among the crowd of thread in the board. These restriction limited the appeal of the message board to te
Trapper Callender

YouTube - 4chan at Otakon 2007 - 0 views

    4chan panel discussion, moot is there and gives a presentation on the history of 4chan and the community the site has fostered.
Katie Hines

Trinity Church - A Twittered Passion Play - 0 views

    A NYC church played out the Passion of Christ on Good Friday. Twitter can do anything.
Trapper Callender

Twitter in 1935 » ReTweet - 0 views

    Twitter in 1935
Katie Hines

Intimate Strangers - 0 views

    A Time magazine article from 1995 proves to be surprisingly relevant to our current look at online community. For the emergence of online communities, this might be particularly interesting.
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