Lots going on under the hood with the After Reading project. Update.

Lots going on under the hood with the After Reading project.

  • I have created my new Illogical Positivism comic strip. It is my first attempt at a comic strip, an experiment, something I will develop to tell a different story in After Reading. Illogical Positivism also helps me process the dramatic election result in the States. The strip has its own website. It should finish in December.
  • I am currently in Las Vegas learning all about Amazon Web Services, Cloud architecture, and the clever little device, Amazon’s Alexa Dot. It is like Apple’s Siri but it is tied to a home-based speaker device. I have seldom used a phone based agent but I find Alexa very intriguing, especially because I can code new skills for it. This fits in with the machine life theme of After Reading. I have not mentioned it yet, but After Reading will be accompanied by many types of pieces, including code experiments.
  • I have opened up the After Reading ebook site, but there is not much content yet. The content will always appear first in this blog, and the best content will find its home in the ebook, as indexed in its main page, the Table of Contents. After Reading is intended to start slowly in January and gradually pick up speed as I get the hang of it. Join me!

“When our imagination and our ability to associate are at their height, we really no longer read what is printed on the paper”

herman-hesse-my-beliefAnd so now to the third and last kind of reader. He is apparently the exact reverse of what is generally called a ‘good’ reader. He is so completely an individual, so very much himself, that he confronts his reading matter with complete freedom. He wishes neither to educate nor to entertain himself, he uses a book exactly like any other object in the world, for him it is simply a point of departure and a stimulus. Essentially it makes no difference to him what he reads. He does not read a philosopher in order to learn from him, to adopt his teaching, or to attack or criticize him. He does not read a poet to accept his interpretation of the world; he interprets it for himself. He is, if you like, completely a child. He plays with everything — and from one point of view there is nothing more fruitful and rewarding than to play with everything.

Herman Hesse. On Reading Books. In My Belief: Essays on Life and Art.

“All work is knowledge work. The architect’s accomplishments depend as much on the body and it’s senses as the hunter’s do.”

All work is knowledge work. The carpenter’s mind is no less animated and engaged than the actuary’s. The architect’s accomplishments depend as much on the body and it’s senses as the hunter’s do. What is true of other animals is true of us: the mind is not sealed in the skull but extends throughout the body. We think not only with our brain but also with our eyes and ears, nose and mouth, limbs and torso. And when we use tools to extend our grasp, we think with them as well.

Nicholas Carr, The Glass Cage: How our Computers are Changing Us.

“God tried to make bodies, but bodies didn’t work, so he scribbled language on top of them”

Maybe people are a series of palimpsests. God tried to make bodies, but bodies didn’t work, so he scribbled language on top of them. It’s not that he threw out the body. He took away its role as the seed and plant and made the body soil instead. And he has new plants now—language. He took what should have been the human and turned it into a nutrifying force for something else.

Max Ritvo, Interview by Kaveh Akbar