Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Textwrap Troubles: Writing Blind 

My writing style has changed, and I know why: the "new" blogger doesn't do textwrapping, and that means as I write this I've already lost sight of this sentence's first words.

I haven't been this distant from my writespeech since that first pre-college Brother-brand wordprocessor, which showed only three lines of text at a time and was therefore utterly useless for drafting if one wanted to write full, deep, rich linearity, the stuff that Neil Postman (bless his soul) dreamt of as the epitome, the pinnacle of thought.

If the medium is the message, then a change in medium, however slight, changes not just the potential for meaning, but meaning itself. And so it is: the inability to track one's own thoughts oralizes language, bringing a soapbubble esoteric impermanence to each phrase.

Writing in blogger now is like writing in 72 point font: the words seem important in part because there are so few of them, and because they are isolated, but this false sense of worth hides a sinister lack of interconnectedness for those who use the page to hold thoughts as they emerge, and who expect to construct meaning in the exterior.

I miss my screen-as-mindtool, the externalized thought organizer. Without it, I feel rushed and stream-of-selfconscious about the ideas as they run fleetingly by.

Stupid Blogger. I want my goddamn interface back, and -- being of a McLuhanesque sensibility -- that means I want my mind back, too.

posted by boyhowdy | 1:17 AM |

Post a Comment
coming soon
now listening