19 Feb Learning from the Codex
Friday, February 19 / 4:00 PM
McCune Conference Room, 6020 HSSB
Our understanding of the way the graphical organization of codex books supports functionality has increased dramatically in the era of digital design activity. The analysis of format features and design elements in print, once approached largely from an aesthetic study of style or a bibliographical analysis of material production, is now focused on functions. How does a codex book support the cognitive activities associated with reading, writing, composition, scholarship, social networking, reference, and so on? This reassessment provides a foundation for the design of information structures in digital environments, but must be qualified by an engagement with new capabilities of electronic media. The vision of an extensible and associative writing space is one of these capabilities, as is redraw and refresh from individual points of view (customization), and of course, real-time social networking. Other challenges come with the problems of scale, where navigation has to be granular as well as synthetic. This talk suggests a few basic premises from the study of the codex as a diagrammatic space that might be of value in the design of digital environments at various scales. Johanna Drucker is author, book artist, visual theorist and cultural critic. She holds the Martin and Bernard Breslauer Professorship, Department of Information Studies, UCLA. Harry Reese (College of Creative Studies, UCSB) and Alan Liu (English, UCSB) will be respondents to Dr. Drucker’s talk, and their comments will be followed by a general discussion.
Sponsored by the IHC’s History of Books and Material Texts RFG, Department of Art, Department of History of Art and Architecture, Department of Film and Media Studies, the College of Creative Studies and endorsed by the Department of English.