File /Humanist.vol22.txt, message 457

From: Humanist Discussion Group <>
Date: Wed, 21 Jan 2009 06:39:58 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: [Humanist] 22.464 historical sources for commentary

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 22, No. 464.
         Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to:

  [1]   From:    ksearsmi <ksearsmi-AT-NCSA.UIUC.EDU>                         (16)
        Subject: Re: [Humanist] 22.460 N American sources for commentary?

  [2]   From:    "James J. O'Donnell" <>                  (2)
        Subject: THIMK

  [3]   From:    robert delius royar <>             (28)
        Subject: Periodicals that I remember

        Date: Tue, 20 Jan 2009 11:11:28 -0600
        From: ksearsmi <ksearsmi-AT-NCSA.UIUC.EDU>
        Subject: Re: [Humanist] 22.460 N American sources for commentary?
        In-Reply-To: <>

Omni (1978-1995 print; -1998 online) would be an especially good place to go, I
would think, for hip but informed commentary on computing and its perceived
futures.  The magazine was a pop science periodical that also ran a high-end
science fiction story each issue.  In complement, its non-fiction offerings
tended to have a futurist / speculative flavor.


Kelly Searsmith, Ph.D., Assistant Director for Planning and Development, eDREAM
(Emerging Digital Research and Education in Arts Media Institute)
  Independent Scholar, Nineteenth Century British Literature & Culture and the
Fantastic in the Arts
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign /

        Date: Tue, 20 Jan 2009 09:14:57 -0500
        From: "James J. O'Donnell" <>
        Subject: THIMK
        In-Reply-To: <>

For your search for commentary:

        Date: Tue, 20 Jan 2009 06:27:42 -0500
        From: robert delius royar <>
        Subject: Periodicals that I remember 
        In-Reply-To: <>


This message strays off topic a bit.

I began being interested in computers in 1965-66 in the 4th grade from 
seeing some science short that Walter Cronkite hosted.  From then I 
remember reading about computers in Popular Science, Popular Mechanics, 
National Geographic (in short passages about lasers and space), and in 
our statewide newspaper from syndicated columns in the Sunday comics and 
science sections.

Before graduating college with a BA I began reading Hofstadter's 
"Metamagical Themas" column in the Scientific American because a 
psycholinguistics course I took had one textbook about modelling human 
responses in a therapy session using a Lisp/Prolog engine.

Earlier (ca. 1974/75) I had taught myself to program BASIC by using open 
terminals and a "found" username/password at my university.  I did not 
take any programming.  After the Hofstadter columns (ca. 1979), learning 
to program became a goal.  I purchased a small computer in 1981/82 and 
began to learn BASIC all over.  In 1983 I purchased a KayPro and began 
learning Lisp.

The magazines I remember from the 1980s were popular for computists but 
not for the culture at large.  I read a number of them, four of which I 
recall: Dr. Dobb's Journal (the mass-market version), MicroCornucopia, 
BYTE, and The C Journal.

It's possible that Nat. Geo. (and its other children-focused editions) 
and Scientific American might be ones that would not quickly come to 
mind as relating to computers in the 1960-1980 period.

Dr. Robert Delius Royar <>
Associate Professor of English, Morehead State University

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