Thursday, 18 February 2016

week 6 blogging question: the reinvented page

To pick up some of the threads from our readings on the history of the page, and to get us thinking about e-books for the next few weeks, this week's question asks you to find an example of a digital text, e-book, app, or other form that reinvents the page in an interesting way. Your example might be an innovative example of page design, or it might be a more radical example of an experiment that completely challenges our idea of what a page is. Remember that the kind of design that leads to a well-made page, digital or otherwise, is often subtle, and works best when it doesn't call attention to itself. Or it might be some crazy experiment that unabashedly calls attention to itself. You decide what counts as interesting, innovative, elegant, or worthwhile in this context -- but tell us why it counts.

You might wish to refer back to last week's readings from Piper and Stoicheff & Taylor, or perhaps the recommended readings, to consider some of the themes that connect the history of page design with future possibilities. Given that e-books -- especially EPUB-style ebooks for reading devices, as opposed to apps -- are still evolving, we'll have lots of opportunities to consider how ebooks don't hold up well next to their print counterparts. (As John Maxwell rightly says in the title of the article we'll be reading soon, when it comes to e-book design we can do better.) Let's try to balance that with some examples of how digital page design has succeeded -- remembering, too, that success sometimes takes the form of an experiment that fails, but fails well.

If you can, please include a photo or screenshot so that we can see what you're writing about. If you're unfamiliar with taking screenshots of windows on your computer screen, this is a good chance to learn! Luckily there's an entire organization dedicated solely to educating people on how to take screenshots on different platforms: (Speaking of screenshots, one of the very first things I did after buying an iPad, which happened to be on the weekend of its first release in the US, was to place it on a photocopier to see if I could take a screenshot that way. It didn't work. But I did learn how to replace a toner cartridge on the iSchool's photocopier! ;-)

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