Like an artwork in the making, how ink is made

Friday, 29 October, 2010

How ink is made (YouTube, 9 mins approx ). The process looks more like something out of an art class such is the paint like quality of the ink, especially during the early stages of its production.

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Oxford English Dictionary may be the Online English Dictionary

Friday, 3 September, 2010

The next edition of the Oxford English Dictionary (or OED), dubbed OED 3, may not be printed, and could only be available in electronic format.

A team of 80 lexicographers has been working on the third edition of the OED – known as OED3 – for the past 21 years. The dictionary’s owner, Oxford University Press (OUP), said the impact of the internet means OED3 will probably appear only in electronic form. The most recent OED has existed online for more than a decade, where it receives two million hits a month from subscribers who pay an annual fee of £240.

It’s interesting to learn that people are prepared pay £240 (about A$410 or US$370) for an annual subscription for a dictionary though.

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Is the internet changing how we think and our neuron structures?

Monday, 23 August, 2010

US writer Nicholas Carr contends that networking technology, that is, the always on, always searchable internet, is gradually eroding our contemplative concentration abilities, something that was fostered by print culture.

While our apparently diminishing capacity to focus alarms some, others aren’t so concerned though, it is their opinion use of the internet is enhancing our intelligence.

Carr has gone a step further though and suggested our reliance on the internet to search for, and locate, information is altering the structure of our brains, an assertion that has divided neuroscientists and psychologists alike.

Carr argues that modern neuroscience, which has revealed the “plasticity” of the human brain, shows that our habitual practices can actually change our neuronal structures. The brains of illiterate people, for example, are structurally different from those of people who can read. So if the technology of printing – and its concomitant requirement to learn to read – could shape human brains, then surely it’s logical to assume that our addiction to networking technology will do something similar?

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Web heads better at turning profits online than print editors

Thursday, 11 March, 2010

The web version of a print magazine is more likely to make money if it is managed by a web editor rather than being left in the hands of the publication’s editor-in-chief, according to a recent survey.

From among the magazine websites that do not make a profit, the survey found that it was nearly twice as likely that their budget is controlled by the editor-in-chief of the print magazine. In contrast, it is the publisher or web editor who controls the purse strings in 67 per cent of profitable websites. Websites with independent web editors, who are also in charge of the budget, are much more likely to keep up with technological developments.

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Apple’s tablet, serving print and web content on the one canvas?

Thursday, 28 January, 2010

Today is the big day, Apple is supposed to finally reveal whatever it is they are keeping up their sleeve. Whether it be an iSlate, an iTablet, or an iCanvas, Derek Powazek hopes the device will serve to meld print and online content.

Every content website I’ve ever worked on has proclaimed the death of print, but the truth is, they’ve all been secretly jealous of old media. Why? Consumers pay for print. Advertisers pay more for print. Print, for all its ink stains and dead trees still makes money. Meanwhile, every print organization I’ve ever worked with has been head-to-toe freaked about the web. The web is the hot, new thing that all the kids are excited about.

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The romance of the printed work

Friday, 27 November, 2009

Say what you will about the benefits of electronic publishing, but given the chance we’d all still like to write and publish a book of our own.

In ten years we will still have books, but they will serve a different purpose to what they do today. The Japanese may well invent an eReader which emits the faint smell of paper to soothe those who yearn for the tactile romance of print. Because, as much as I love my Kindle, it is a marriage of convenience. My true mistress will always be books. The smell of print, and the sensual touch of high quality paper will never fail to seduce me.

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Lettering from London’s underground and newspapers

Wednesday, 28 October, 2009

For typography fans, examples of lettering as seen in London, drawn from newspapers, London Underground signage, and railway stations.

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A directory of Australian print designers

Wednesday, 7 October, 2009

The Print Directory (TPD) is a new resource with the goal of making it easier to locate print designers in Australia.

The Print Directory (TPD) is a free resource connecting Australian printers to designers, artists and publishers. This website aims to streamline the process of supplier selection by listing printers on the directory and highlighting their capabilities.

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Does data in any form last for 57,000 years before decaying?

Friday, 18 September, 2009

If – for some reason – you decided to print out all the data on the internet using an ink jet printer, the task would take about 3,800 years to complete. It would then take you 57,000 years to read – non-stop that is – all of that information.

That’s quite a feat, I’m thinking there might be a better way to spend 57,000 years though.

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Errors preserved for eternity in the black and white of print

Wednesday, 16 September, 2009

As much as we love books the print medium does have a way of propagating errors and mistakes which cannot be corrected as easily as electronically published material can.

Nietzsche famously said that there are no such things as facts, only interpretations. Be that as it may, every writer knows that there are certainly such things as factual mistakes. Errors are common in all forms of media, but it is mistakes in the printed word that are perhaps the most pernicious. Once a “fact” has been pressed onto paper, it becomes a trusted source, and misinformation will multiply. The combination of human fallibility with Gutenberg’s invention of efficient printing in 1439 has, for all the revolutionary advantages of the latter, proved (in some respects) to be a toxic mixture.

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