They imitated paper and familiar office machines because that was what the Xerox executives could understand. Xerox was a paper-walloping company, and all other concepts had to be ironed onto paper, like toner, to be even visible in their paper paradigm.
.. Even stranger is the “browser” concept. Think of it– a serial view of a parallel universe! Trying to comprehend the large-scale structure of connected Web pages is like trying to look at the night sky (at least, in places that stars are still visible) through a soda straw.
The material gave rise to currency, bureaucracy, and modern communication—and caused panic over technological change.
The anonymous person who snagged the @Plato Twitter handle eight years ago took these words to heart and has never tweeted anything. So far, it’s been a brilliant performance.
.. so parchment was next in line, made by scraping and processing animal skins. As many as two hundred animals were needed to make a single book.
.. Rulers also fretted how rising literacy and access to new ideas might affect their populations.
.. But Europe lagged behind. It’s unclear why the continent used parchment for so long, but like all areas that that were slower to adopt paper, this hindered its advancement. Up until the thirteenth century, many kings and princes were still illiterate. The greatest argument for why Europeans eventually switched to paper is because it was cheap. They first used it to make better Bibles, then quickly learned to rely on it for other obsessions, like money and banking.
.. a major subplot: people complaining about change. “As with every other new technology, there were those who were disdainful,” he writes, “some who thought it was barbarism, some who thought it was the end of civilization, and some who thought it was a threat to their jobs.”
.. Kurlansky illustrates his points with journalism, an industry whose fate is tied to the history of paper more than any other.
.. In the next decades, cheaper paper meant a transition from broadsides to pamphlets, which were longer and more reflective. This came just in time to enable writers like Thomas Paine ..
.. As Kurlansky writes, it’s merely a response to our demands: faster, cheaper, and “an innate desire for connection.”
The usual story about Xerox PARC, that they were trying to make the computer understandable to the average man, was a crock. They imitated paper and familiear office machines because that was what the Xerox executives could understand. Xerox was a paper-walloping company, and all other concepts had to be ironed onto paper, like toner, to be even visible in their paper paradigm.
.. Today’s arbitrarily constructed computer world is also based on paper simulation, or WYSIWYG. That’s where we’re stuck in the current model, where most softwar seems to be mapped to paper. (‘WYSIWYG’ generally means ‘What You See is What You Get’ — meaning what you get *when you print it OUT*). In other words, paper is the flat heart of most of today’s software concepts.
This video details how to use the new Recognize Text panel in Acrobat X Std. or Pro. to OCR and fix-up text in your PDF file.