Any medium powerful enough to extend man’s reach is powerful enough to topple his world. To get the medium’s magic to work for one’s aims rather than against them is to attain literacy.
in our wired world, it’s essential that we all gain some control over the technology that increasingly pervades our lives. … Being able to fix your car when it breaks down is a tremendous skill to have. Being able to bend computers to your will is even more so, since here we’re dealing with information technology—a medium of thought and communication as vital to the transmission of ideas as the ability to use a pen.
The Web is not just some frivolous vehicle for entertainment and virtual community. Going forward, it’s going to be a vital aspect of human endeavor and an important lynchpin in affecting the human condition.
the questions raised by digital [humanities] are some of the most important that we face. The explosion of printed material after the fifteenth century fundamentally changed scholarship … [w]e are currently in the midst of another such transformation, one that will give us nearly instantaneous access to the contents of the world’s great libraries and archives, will radically democratize knowledge production, and will force us to think of machines as part of our audience.
What does it mean to study “literature” or “history” when print is no longer the normative medium in which literary or historical artifacts are produced, let alone analyzed? What does it mean, more generally, for humanistic knowledge?