Monday, September 15, 2003
MarkBernstein.org
 
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Good bits

The critical moment in Dr. Torill's account of her defense comes when the First Opponent (Stuart Moulthrop) asks his final, climactic question:

The concluding question almost threw me off my heels! How did I envision a study of games should be organised? What did that have to do with my thesis?

I'd love to hear the answer!

We don't have Dr. Torill's answer to that, yet, but we do have an interesting hint at a first step in her essay for the new Tekka, which is out today. In Tracking The Digital Juggler, she argues that defocused concentration is key to successfully mastering the digital world.

Often, the good jugglers would be the children who were not able to focus in class. The teachers would frown, and say they were bad pupils, that they were not making enough of an effort to focus. Their minds would wander, their hands would fiddle with different objects, their attention would leap from one node of information to the next.

This is a daring line of argument, since is appears to play straight into the hands of the critics who (mistakenly) believe hypertextuality to be a symptom of attention deficit disorder (or depraved, decadent laxity). That's not the story we're telling here; getting the details right, instead of cramming them into pop-psych stereotypes, leads to a very different conclusion.