Notebook of Sand

• Recent Publications
• Recent Projects
• Conferences & Speaking
"Comparing Spatial Hypertext Collections"
  ACM Hypertext '09
"Archiving and Sharing Your Tinderbox"
  Tinderbox Weekend London '09
"The Electronic Nature of Future Literatures"
  Literary Studies Now, Apr '09
"The World University Project"
  St. John's Col. Cambridge, Feb '09
"Ethical Explanations,"
  The New Knowledge Forge, Jun '08
Lecture, Cambridge University
  Tragedy in E-Lit, Nov '07
Hypertext '07: Tragedy in E-Lit
Host for Tinderbox Cambridge '07
Keynote: Dickinson State Uni Conf
Upper Midwest NCHC'07: Speaker
eNarrative 6: Creative Nonfiction
HT'05: "Philadelphia Fullerine"
  Nelson award winning paper
NCHC '05:
 Nurturing Independent Scholarship
Riddick Practicum:
  Building Meeting Good Will
NCHC '04:
  Philadelphia Fullerine
  Lecture on American Studies
WWW@10: Nonfiction on the Web
NCHC '03: Parliamentary Procedure
ELL '03 -- Gawain Superstar
• (a)Musing (ad)Dictions:

Ideas. Tools. Art. Build --not buy. What works, what doesn't. Enjoy new media and software aesthetics at Tekka.

Theodore Gray (The Magic Black Box)

Faith, Life, Art, Academics. Sermons from my family away from home: Eden Chapel!

My other home: The Cambridge Union Society (in 2007, I designed our [Fresher's Guide])

The Economist daily news analysis

Global Higher Ed blog

• Hypertext/Writing

Writing the Living Web

Chief Scientist of Eastgate Systems, hypertext expert Mark Bernstein. (Electronic) Literature, cooking, art, etc.

Fabulous game reviews at playthisthing.

• Stats

Chapter I: Born. Lived. Died.

There is a Chapter II.

Locale: Lancaster County Pa, USA

Lineage: Guatemala

Religion: My faith is the primary focus of my life, influencing each part of me. I have been forgiven, cleansed, and empowered by Jesus Christ. Without him, I am a very thoughtful, competent idiot. With him, I am all I need to be, all I could ever hope for. I oppose institutional religious stagnation, but getting together with others is a good idea. God is real. Jesus Christ is his Son, and the Bible is true. Faith is not human effort. It's human choice. I try to be the most listening, understanding, and generous person I can.

Interests: Anything I can learn. Training and experience in new media, computer science, anglophone literature, education, parliamentary debate, democratic procedure, sculpture, and trumpet performance. Next: applied & computational linguistics, probably.

Education: Private school K-3. Home educated 4-12. Graduated Summa Cum Laude from Elizabethtown College in Jan 2006. As the 2006 Davies-Jackson Scholar, I studied English at St. John's College, Cambridge University from 2006 - 2008.

Memberships: Eden Baptist, Cambridge Union Society, ACM, AIP, GPA.

Alum of the Elizabethtown College Honors Program, sponsored by the Hershey Company.

The World of Tomorrow, part 2
Saturday, 14 Aug 2004 :-: [soundtrack]

My great-grandfather was great at filing work, but he didn't work in an office. He was a tool-and-die maker for IBM. New employees would get the drudge work of filing burrs off metal parts.

The art of filing has always had a great part in America's industrial history, back to the very beginning of our industrial boom and Eli Whitney. When Eli (oddly known for his failed cotton gin business today) invented the idea of precision-machined parts, he failed to invent the technology for precision machining. Whitney sold the U.S. government thousands of rifles with supposedly-interchangeable parts.

Like most weapons of the day, Whitney's new repairable rifles weren't very repairable. But some were amazing. If one of the gun mechanisms broke, they could unscrew it, replace it with a brand-new part, and keep the weapon out of the trash heap. The U.S. government was elated.

The other gun manufacturers were scared. They rushed to invent ways to mechanically-manufacture gun parts. They didn't know that Whitney's plan was a scam.

Archeologists have dug around Whitney's old gun-manufacturing plant. They found hundreds of broken files. Instead of mechanically-manufacturing the guns, Whitney was producing them the old way -- and hiring dozens of men to file the pieces until they fit.

Whitney was a hero, but he never got significant financial success. Why? The other gun manufacturers were so scared of Whitney's fake technology, they turned around and actually built the real thing.

But a century-and-a-half later, people still filed away at parts to make them fit. But my great-grandfather wasn't content to file away at uneven steel. Now a tool and die maker, my great-grandfather built the mechanical equivalent of software for the mechanical industry behind IBM. It wasn't his first job -- he had worked at the Pennsylvania coal mines for years -- but it was perhaps his most creative. He and the men he worked with would turn the engineering prowess of IBM's designers into something that could be mass-produced.

Today people don't like to get their hands grubby. They get into an office and fret away in air-conditioned towers. But those mechanical minds of the industrial age? They were real hackers. They were real artists.