[Humanist] 31.375 sustained reading from screen

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Sun Oct 22 08:51:28 CEST 2017

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 31, No. 375.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

        Date: Sat, 21 Oct 2017 09:57:35 +0000
        From: "Cosgrave, Mike" <M.Cosgrave at ucc.ie>
        Subject: Re:  31.371 sustained reading from screen?
        In-Reply-To: <20171020055252.B2A9B7CD7 at s16382816.onlinehome-server.info>

I do 99.9% of my reading and work on mobile devices now (but I do still buy well made physical books; art, or poetry, or cookbooks)

I use the MacBook about once a week; and only for certain specific things which I can't do on my iPad (Printing from OpenOffice, manipulating course assets on Blackboard)

If something is worth reading for work, its worth annotating, and tools like iAnnotate or Liquid Text are simply much better for highlighting, annotating and reusing text than paper.

If I'm reading for pleasure, its simply more convenient. (and in that I think I would now include listening to podcasts while I drive to and from college.)

In practically every course I teach, I require students to submit an annotated pdf of a course reading, as well as mindmapping articles. My colleague Donna Alexander does the full spectrum from physical annotation of poetry, to digital (using hypothes.is) in her classes - we count these as all part of the active reading process

I do point out to my students that this is the result of many years of playing with tech toys, from the Newton to the Clie to the iPad culminating in having a teaching room where I can mirror my tablets (iOs and Android) to the main screen wirelessly; technology which I use daily to oppress my students.  My own children read mainly on screen, but do buy and read physical books - my feeling is that most of my students still read more on paper than on screen though.

> From: humanist-bounces at lists.digitalhumanities.org <humanist-bounces at lists.digitalhumanities.org> on behalf of Humanist Discussion Group <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
> Sent: 20 October 2017 06:52:52
> To: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org
> Subject: [Humanist] 31.371 sustained reading from screen?

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 31, No. 371.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

        Date: Fri, 20 Oct 2017 06:42:18 +0100
        From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
        Subject: sustained reading from screen?

Who does sustained reading from screen under what conditions?

My own reading habits go something like this. If the reading is of
articles from which I need to extract basics of the argument, then I
skim the text on screen and sometimes take notes. If I want to immerse
myself in the argument and assimilate the author's way of thinking, then
it has to be from a codex. (As a result of this my library grows with
alarming rapidity.) I am forced to make an exception when the book isn't
available but can be found online.

I should note that the screens I read from, when I must, are of the
high-resolution kind. I should also note that I can read from a
high-definition tablet but seldom do so unless away from home. And
I do have comfortable places to sit with said tablet.

Are these habits a function of age? Do those who have learned to read
from screen differ?

Comments welcome, as usual.

Willard McCarty (www.mccarty.org.uk/ http://www.mccarty.org.uk/ ), Professor emeritus, Department of
Digital Humanities, King's College London; Adjunct Professor, Western
Sydney University and North Carolina State University; Editor,
Interdisciplinary Science Reviews (www.tandfonline.com/loi/yisr20<http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/yisr20>)

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