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Does Writing Have a Future?$
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Vilém Flusser

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780816670222

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816670222.001.0001

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(p.95) Books
Does Writing Have a Future?

Vilém Flusser

Mark Poster

Nancy Ann Roth

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter reflects on books in relation to reading and writing. If writing were to be abandoned, packing paper would be the only kind of paper left. There will be artificial memories different from and better than libraries. Everything that was once stored in libraries will be transferred into these new memories. A book is, from one point of view, an intermediate stage on the way from the forest into the land of artificial intelligences. It is always some part of a forest. The book wants to be turned around, opened up, and paged through. These three movements cannot be done with trees or artificial intelligences. They are characteristic of the intermediary stage between the two. What we gained by leaving the forest, and what will be taken away from us again, is turning around, opening up, and paging through.

Keywords:   books, reading, writing, artificial memories, libraries, forest, artificial intelligence, turning around, opening up, paging through

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