question underlying the lecture will be of the
chicken and egg variety did technological innovation
precede social developments, and make them possible,
or did desire and need drive the development of
point can be nicely illustrated by examining the
origin of printing from moveable type. The development
of this invention had nothing to do with a philosophical
ideal, such as disseminating knowledge broadly
to a previously un-empowered audience; rather
printing was invented simply to make cheaper books.
Only after its establishment did the possibility
of widespread education, through the production
of identical multiple copies, become a possibility.
will show pictures that illuminate 5 major technical
aspects of pictures:
nature of pictures as representational, symbolic
development of pictures that can move (not moving
pictures, but rather ones that can travel to
revolutionary possibilities of identical multiple
invention and implications of photography.
steadily decreasing mass of printing matrices
and multiple picture forms.
of this is about the dissemination of knowledge
through the power of pictures, and the manner
in which systems such as democracy can grow to
previously unheard of scales through the efficient
spread of identical blocks of information through
visual forms that exist in multiple copies.
© 2001, Richard Benson