The Future of Text, Monday the 11th

The Future of Text was on Monday the 11th and Tuesday the 12th this week and I am very happy.

Day One was 10 min presentations and 5 min Q&A

This time it was hosted at the University of Southampton where I am studying for my PhD and there were quite a few of my colleagues this time, not just disparate people who come together for a day or two and then disperse.

I posted a series of pictures here: and the speakers presentations are online at The videos will be up when available.

Here is Doc, David, Mark B, Zyxmn,Joyce, Stacey and Mark A heading to the dinner:

• Professor Les Carr Head of Web & Internet Science Research Group, University of Southampton
• Professor Sir Nigel Shadbolt Principal of Jesus College Oxford
• Vint Cerf co-inventor of the internet
• Stacey Mason PhD Fellow at UC Santa Cruz
• Dr. Sarah Walton author, tech & government consultant

• Mark Anderson Southampton PhD student
• Dr K Faith Lawrence King’s College London
• David Price creator of DebateGraph
• Dr Gyuri Lajos software developer
• Frode Hegland event founder & Southampton PhD student

• Doc Searls author and journalist
• Mark Bernstein of Eastgate Systems
• Keith Houston author
• Dr Paul Smart Senior Research Fellow, University of Southampton
• Pip Willcox Centre for Digital Scholarship in Oxford

• Dr Paul Groth of Elsevier Labs
• Christopher Gutteridge of the University of Southampton
• Zyxmn Daley Jes Full Stack Developer, Sparrho
• Professor Luc Moreau Former Head of the Web and Internet Science Group, University of Southampton
• Professor Dame Wendy Hall Director of Web Science Institute, University of Southampton

FoT Day 2 Planning

Christopher Gutteridge proposed two questions we need to answer and said: The second, cultural change, question is at least as important as the question about technology. Some great projects and ideas have gained no traction because they only concentrate on technology. Open access, while flawed, corrupted and diluted, is an idea that is now rooted in academic culture – maybe we can learn from that?


In terms of interactive text:

* how do we want the world to be

We want textual discourse to require less effort (freeing more energy for work thought away from ‘how to do work’ thought’) and to deliver more cognitive benefit in terms of deeper understanding of the issues, while authoring and while reading.

* how do we get there from here

We will need to develop tools and infrastructures (for meta-informaiton and more) as well as engage with the user communities to raise their expectations.