- Dec 2020
I often want it in a different format than the one it was originally published in (audio → text, text → audio, pdf → ebook). Automated conversion works but is cumbersome. Listening to text articles requires sending them to a special app and converting articles to ebooks is annoying and loses a lot of formatting and navigation.
This is a fascinating use-case which I find myself experiencing as well. As someone with a kinesthetic learning style, I can often struggle to absorb texts without audio, and vice versa.
The fractiousness of existing systems is a complex issue owing to business and technical considerations briefly discussed here (meta comment: Why is reference not a first class semantic construct within hypothes.is?)
Nonetheless, annotation of a fused audio/text stream would seem to be a really interesting product offering.
I’m not always connected to a stable internet connection
The centralized nature of today's systems is a problem for several reasons - Some are technical, but this applies socially and economically as well. This mindset of centralization is arguably a cultural afterimage from the advent of computing, with little incentive on the part of business to change.
In each of these senses (technical, social, economic) many of the computational abstractions we use today to simplify individual progress actually hold us back in aggregate.
In my view, there exist eery parallels between the technical foibles of centralization (CAP, etc), and the subtle manner of economic and behavioral coercion which come along for the ride. I do not believe there is a magic bullet to be found per se – but rather that it is possible to decentralize well, both from a technical perspective, and in terms of business as a function of value-addition rather than coercion.
- Jun 2020