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.

Wireless and the Planning of Physical Space
Tuesday, 7 Feb 2006 :-:

Until recently, the Elizabethtown College library was usually vacant of any activity--just how I liked it. I could wander the stacks in silence, pondering and reading whatever random works caught my fancy. I had been making this practice a regular habit for years, even before I became a formal student at the college.

Now, the library is full of students who sit in the chairs, scribble in their notebooks, and type on their computers. The same has happened with the main concourse student area, the Brossman Commons.

** * **

When I joined Elizabethtown college, a laptop was still somewhat unusual among students. I would connect mine to one of the ubiquitous network ports and try to ignore the ogling people. Now, it's just another machine.

What happened?

** * **

Wireless Internet. This year, the college installed WIFI hotspots in the Brossman Commons and library. Both areas now see much more traffic; more homework is also done in these areas.

I don't think that wireless has encouraged more study. Rather, I think it has allowed people to roam more while remaining connected to the 'net, and by implication, their friends. For this reason, quiet places can now be more difficult to find.

** * **

WIFI has allowed the library and the Brossman Commons to fill the purpose planned by their designers. Both were clearly designed to be places of convergence, where people could meet and exchange ideas. In the past few months, these spaces seem to have reached that potential. It's amazing how such an un-physical thing can so deeply interact with a space and the people that use it.

** * **

Do architects think of these things? Sure they do, but do they really think about these things? When designing a multi-million dollar structure, it seems only reasonable to hire a sociologist or two to provide helpful advice.

** * **

You can only plan for technology so far. The library fails in one point. Its tables are perfectly designed for the technology of the time it was built -- the late 80s. They could hardly foresee the impact of portable computing. So they did what seemed best: They designed desks and chairs which were perfectly ergonomic for paper technology.

These same tables and chairs are a primary cause behind my Repetetive Stress Injury; They're terrible for people who need to type.

Such is the flow of life, I suppose. We do our best to plan, but we can't predict everything perfectly.