Re: Writing or Dialogue?

Subject: Re: Writing or Dialogue?
From: Wayne Douglass <wayned -at- VERITY -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 19 Nov 1998 09:55:56 -0800

Steven J. Owens wrote:
> Leave aside the first two parts, I've often wondered, lately,
>about profoundly new ways of building an informational structure to
>convey knowledge. Perhaps the future, in some ways, is going back to
>the past, building storytellers instead of books. In a certain sense,
>a technical document is designed to be used non-linearly. To a
>certain extent you could consider this a dialogue. What other forms
>might the dialogue take?

Back to the past, indeed. Before the Scientific Revolution, dialogue *was*
the preferred format for conveying technical information. The last gasp of
this tradition that I know of is Fontenelle's _Entretiens sur le pluralite
des mondes_ (1686) in which an astronomer explains Copernican astronomy to
some noble ladies of the court.

Wayne Douglass phone: 408-542-2139
Verity, Inc. FAX: 408-542-2040
894 Ross Road mailto:wayned -at- verity -dot- com
Sunnyvale, CA 94089

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