One subtle theme I’ve noticed from this classes this week has been the theme of paper- or lack there of. It’s not exactly the “intended” theme or issue that we’ve been talking about or that I was initially going to blog about, but celery paper got me thinking and reflecting on the issue.
One obvious thing we’ve been losing with the progression of technology and text is the ability to tangibly hold all of the awesome documents we share. Just the other day, I was trying to mail something to someone abroad, but they said that the postal service is quite neglected in the past several years to the point that they wouldn’t get the letter for about a month. My friend suggested that I take a picture of my letter (that I had already spent the 20 more minutes writing, rather than typing) and send it via facebook or email. That’s just no fun!
Dr. Bolin mentioned today how much a font or the details portrayed in the font also give important meaning to the text. We miss that, or are limited with certain fonts and styles when we are typing things on a computer and not writing it out by hand. My group in the lab exercise on Monday noticed that it would be really hard to capture the fonts, colors, decorations, and styles from the old Norbertine diary and “translate” it to a computerized word document. I also really liked Jaclyn’s point in her blog, pointing out the fact that it really affects our handwriting skills today. It also can potentially affect the time and effort and thought that we put into what we write. I can’t imagine learning keyboard skills before handwriting skills, but who knows? Handwriting things may just become a luxury just like reading an actual book or letter is a treat/luxury.
A quick disclaimer- I’m open to the advantages that our technology advances bring: saving paper, saving time, saving space, and creating more connections worldwide (the list goes on…). We just have to remember and maybe be aware of some of the qualities that we are missing by using computers over papyrus or celery paper.