13 Matching Annotations
  1. Jul 2022
  2. May 2022
    1. Ideally, skilled readers organized notes into personal “arks of study,” or data chests. Vincent Placcius’s De arte excerpendi contains an engraving of a note cabinet, or scrinia literaria, in which notes are attached to hooks and hung on bars according to thematic organization, as well as various drawers for the storage of note paper, hooks, and possibly writing supplies. Both Placcius and later Leibniz built such contraptions, though none survives today. While these organizational tools cannot be directly linked to modern computers, it is difficult not to compare them. Placcius’s design looks strikingly like the old punch-card computation machines that date from the 1880s, and the first mainframes, such as the 1962 IBM 7090.

      "arks of study" being used as early data chests or stores is a fascinating conceptualization

  3. Apr 2022
    1. In a remarkable essay on precursors to hypertext, Peter Krapp(2006) provides a useful overview of the development of the indexcard and its use by various thinkers, including Locke, Leibniz, Hegel,and Wittgenstein, as well as by those known to Barthes and part of asimilar intellectual milieu, including Michel Leiris, Georges Perec,and Claude Lévi-Strauss (Krapp, 2006: 360-362; Sieburth, 2005).1

      Peter Krapp created a list of thinkers including Locke, Leibniz, Hegel, Wittgenstein, Barthes, Michel Leiris, Georges Perec, and Lévi-Strauss who used index cards in his essay Hypertext Avant La Lettre on the precursors of hypertext.

      see also: Krapp, P. (2006) ‘Hypertext Avant La Lettre’, in W. H. K. Chun & T. Keenan (eds), New Media, Old Theory: A History and Theory Reader. New York: Routledge: 359-373.

      Notice that Krapp was the translator of Paper Machines About Cards & Catalogs, 1548 – 1929 (MIT Press, 2011) by Marcus Krajewski. Which was writing about hypertext and index cards first? Or did they simply influence each other?

  4. Dec 2021
    1. Are we really to insist that the advocacy of Chinese models ofstatecraft by Leibniz, his allies and followers really had nothing to dowith the fact that Europeans did, in fact, adopt something that looksvery much like Chinese models of statecraft?

      At the suggestion of Leibniz, parts of Europe began adopting Chinese models of statecraft which had not previously been known or used in Europe.

    1. It is telling that during the same period in which Harrison invented his Ark of Studies, the first calculating machines were tested in Europe: the famous cista mathematica by Athanasius Kircher, the or-ganum mathematicum by Kaspar Schott, and the cistula by Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz.

      Keep in mind that Leibniz actually had a version of Harrison's cabinet in his possession. (cf. Paper Machines)

    1. From 1676 onward, he follows an excerpting practice that directly refers to Jungius (via one of his students). Regarding Leibniz ’ s Excerpt Cabinet He wrote on slips of paper whatever occurred to him — in part when perusing books, in part during meditation or travel or out on walks — yet he did not let the paper slips (particularly the excerpts) cover each other in a mess; it was his habit to sort through them every now and then.

      According to one of his students, Leibniz used his note cabinet both for excerpts that he took from his reading as well as notes an ideas he came up separately from his reading.

      Most of the commonplace book tradition consisted of excerpting, but when did note taking practice begin to aggregate de novo notes with commonplaces?

    2. Leibniz ’ s propos-als for an indispensable library guide that mark the beginning of his activity in Wolfenb ü ttel in December 1690 include ideas on the form of cataloging: “ paper slips of all books, sorted pro materia et autoribus. ” 57 The plan antici-pates registering every book merely once, precisely on a slip of paper, so that the slip only has to be placed in the right order for any catalog organized alphabetically, by subject, or in any other way. Theoretically, this procedure could have successfully made numerous catalogs with the same data set. However, the plan is never carried out. In fact, the librarians supervised by Leibniz manage merely to assemble an alphabetical catalog; all the other plans fail for lack of employees and funding

      Leibnitz created a plan for creating a library card catalog for Wolfenbüttel in December 1690, which would have been similar in form to 20th century card catalogs, but the idea was never carried out for lack of employees and funding.

    3. “ The library is the treasury of all wealth of the human mind in which one takes refuge, ” Leibniz writes in a letter to Friedrich of Steinberg in October 1696. 5
  5. Aug 2021
    1. By the way, Luhmann's system is said to have had 35.000 cards. Jules Verne had 25.000. The sixteenth-century thinker Joachim Jungius is said to have had 150.000, and how many Leibniz had, we do not know, though we do know that he had one of the most ingenious piece of furniture for keeping his copious notes.

      Circa late 2011, he's positing Luhmann had 35,000 cards and not 90,000.

      Jules Verne used index cards. Joachim Jungius is said to have had 150,000 cards.

  6. Jul 2021
    1. Thomas Harrison, a 17th-century English inventor, devised the “ark of studies,” a small cabinet that allowed scholars to excerpt books and file their notes in a specific order. Readers would attach pieces of paper to metal hooks labeled by subject heading. Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, the German polymath and coinventor of calculus (with Isaac Newton), relied on Harrison’s cumbersome contraption in at least some of his research.

      Reference for this as well?

      Is this the same piece of library furniture that I've also recently read of Leibniz using?

    1. Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716), der nicht nur angesehener Mathematiker und Philosoph war, sondern auch Bibliothekar der Herzog August Bibliothek in Wolfenbüttel, soll sich eigens einen Karteischrank als Büchermöbel nach eigenen Vorstellungen haben bauen lassen.

      Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716), who was not only a respected mathematician and philosopher, but also librarian at the Herzog August Library in Wolfenbüttel, is said to have had a filing cabinet built for him as book furniture according to his own ideas.

      I'm curious to hear more about what this custom library furniture looked like? Could it have been the precursor to the modern-day filing cabinet?

      I can picture something like the recent photo I saw of Bob Hope amidst his commonplace book.

  7. Apr 2021
    1. In Germany the great Gottfried Wil-helm von Leibniz was sufficiently intrigued by the notion to incor-porate it into his scheme for a universal language;

      I wish he'd written more here about this. Now I'll have to dig up the reference and the set up as I've long had a similar thought for doing this myself.

      I'll also want to check into the primacy of the idea as others have certainly thought about the same thing. My initial research indicates that both François Fauvel Gouraud and Isaac Pitman both wrote about or developed this possibility. In Pitman's case he used it to develop his version of shorthand which was likely informed by earlier versions of shorthand.