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Which clippings match 'Indexing' keyword pg.1 of 1
09 JANUARY 2013

Roberto Busa and the Invention of the Machine-Generated Concord

"This is a story from early in the technological revolution, when the application was out searching for the hardware, from a time before the Internet, a time before the PC, before the chip, before the mainframe. From a time even before programming itself.

Tasman's 1957 prophecy was no shot in the dark. His view of the future was a projection from his recent past. Thomas J. Watson, Sr. had assigned him in 1949 to be IBM liaison and support person for a young Jesuit's daring project to produce an index to the complete writings of St. Thomas Aquinas. First, Tasman's thesis, as subsequent history turned out, was a huge understatement; and second, it essentially defines the first large invention of Father Roberto Busa, S. J., namely, to look at 'tools developed primarily for science and commerce' and to see other uses for them. As will be seen, this was a case of fortune favoring the prepared mind. Redirecting scholarship, he essentially invented the machine–generated concordance, the first of which he had published in 1951.

Father Busa, of course, is best known as the producer of the landmark 56–volume Index Thomisticus. As he began this work in 1946, and produced a sample proof–of–concept, machine–generated concordance in 1951, his professional life spans the entire computing chapter in the history of scholarship. Emphasis in this article will be on the early steps."

(Thomas Nelson Winter, January 1999)

Published in The Classical Bulletin 75:1 (1999), pp. 3–20. Copyright © 1999 Bolchazy–Carducci Publishers, Inc.



1946194919511957 • analytical indexes • automatically analysing • automatically indexing • computing • concordance • concordances • Dead Sea Scrolls • electronic data processing machine • fortune favouring the prepared mind • history of computinghistory of scholarshipIBM • IBM 705 • Index Thomisticus • indexing • International Business Machines Corporation • literary data processing • machine-generated concordance • Paul Tasman • printed works • proof of concept • prophecy • punch cardspunched-card system • rapid compilation • Roberto Busa • science and commerce • St Thomas Aquinas • Summa Theologica of St Thomas Aquinas • technological revolution • Thomas Nelson Winter • Thomas Watson • tools developed for science and commerce


Simon Perkins
30 JUNE 2012

Internet Archaeology: graphic artefacts from our recent past

"Internet Archaeology seeks to explore, recover, archive and showcase the graphic artifacts found within earlier Internet Culture. Established in 2009, the chief purpose of Internet Archaeology is to preserve these artifacts and acknowledge their importance in understanding the beginnings and birth of an Internet Culture. We focus on graphic artifacts only, with the belief that images are most culturally revealing and immediate. Most of the files in our archive are in either JPG or GIF format and are categorized by either still or moving image, they are then arranged in various thematic subcategories. Currently, a major focus of Internet Archaeology is on the archiving and indexing of images found on Geocities websites, as their existence has been terminated by parent company Yahoo; who discontinued GeoCities operation on October 26, 2009. Internet Archaeology is an ongoing effort which puts preservation paramount. Unlike traditional archaeology, where physical artifacts are unearthed; Internet Archaeology's artifacts are digital, thus more temporal and transient. Yet we believe that these artifacts are no less important than say the cave paintings of Lascaux. They reveal the origins of a now ubiquitous Internet Culture; showing where we have been and how far we have come."

(Internet Archaeology)

Via Chelsea Nichols [–archaeology–the–best–of–90s–internet–graphics/]



1990s200920th century phenomenaaestheticsarchaeologyarchivearchiving • archiving and indexing • artefactcave paintingscultural codes • culturally revealing • cyber archaeologycyberculturedigital anthropologydigital artefactsdigital cultureemergence of the webGeocitiesGIF format • graphic artefacts • graphic artifacts • graphic designimagesindexindexingInternetinternet archaeologyinternet culture • JPG • JPG format • Lascauxnew mediaobsolescencepreservationrecent pasttransiencevisual designweb designweb pagesweb publishingYahoo!


Simon Perkins
16 APRIL 2009

Amazon blocks Phorm adverts scan

"Phorm builds a profile of users by scanning for keywords on websites visited and then assigns relevant ads.

It has proved controversial because it scans almost all sites a user visits and there is an ongoing political debate about how a user gives consent.

Last month the Open Rights Group wrote to the world's leading websites asking them to opt out of Phorm."
(Darren Waters, BBC News)



adverts scan • Amazon.comcross-context sharingdataindexingkeywordsonline • Open Rights Group • Phorm


Simon Perkins
27 DECEMBER 2007

Scrapbooks were a coping strategy for old media

"Scrapbooks were a 'coping' strategy for old media at a time when distribution via railroads and cheap printing processes led to an overwhelming surplus of popular magazines and newspapers. [Ellen Gruber] Garvey describes them as 'a new subcategory of media – the cheap, the disposable, and yet somehow tantalizingly valuable, if only their value could be seperated from their ephemerality'. Scrapbooks were one just one strategy for indexing and archiving cuttings, including commercial clipping services, but scrapbooks represented a private, vernacular response to this information revolution. This remaking of popular media is clearly a precursor of the current blogging phenomenon, and Garvey's analysis of scrapbook making introduces some concepts that are useful in discussing blogging as part of our contemporary media culture."

(Matt Locke, 28 September 2003, TEST)

Ellen Gruber Garvey (2004). Scissorizing and Scrapbooks: Nineteenth Century Reading, Remaking and Recirculating. "New Media, 1740–1915". L. Gitelman and G. B. Pingree, MIT Press.



archivingcommonplace book • cuttings • dehumanisationdisposable • Ellen Gruber Garvey • ephemeral • Geoffrey Pingree • gleanerindexinginformation revolution • Lisa Gitelman • material culture • Matt Locke • memoryremediationscrapbookstrategy

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