26 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2022
    1. I believe Victor Margolin when he says that he developed his own system. That's what I did in the years before people started widely discussing personal knowledge systems online. Nobody taught me how to do it when I was in college. @chrisaldrich repeatedly tries to connect everyone's knowledge practices to an ongoing tradition that stretches back to commonplace books, but he overstates it. There is such a thing as independent development of a personal knowledge system. I know it because I've lived it. It's not so difficult that it requires extraordinary genius.

      Reply to Andy https://forum.zettelkasten.de/discussion/comment/16865#Comment_16865

      Andy, I'll take you at your word. You're right that none of it requires extraordinary genius--though many who seem to exhibit extraordinary genius do have variations of these practices in their lives, and the largest proportion of them either read about them or were explicitly taught them.

      With these patterns and practices being so deeply rooted in our educational systems for so long (not to mention the heavy influences of our orality and evolved thinking apparatus even prior to literacy), it's a bit difficult for many to truly guarantee that they've done these things independently without heavy cultural and societal influence. As a result, it's not a far stretch for people to evolve their own practices to what works for them and then think that they've invented something new. The common person may not be aware of the old ideas of scala naturae or scholasticism, but they certainly feel them in their daily lives. Commonplacing is not much different.

      By analogy, Elon Musk might say he created the Tesla, but it's a far bigger stretch for him to say that he invented a new means of transportation, or a car, or the wheel when we know he's swimming in a culture rife with these items. Humans are historically far better at imitation than innovation. If people truly independently developed systems like these so many times, then in the evolutionary record of these practices we should expect to see more diversity than we do in practice. We might expect to see more innovation than just the plain vanilla adjacent possible. Given Margolin's age, time period, educational background, and areas of expertise, there is statistically very little chance that he hadn't seen or talked about versions of this practice with several dozens of his peers through his lifetime after which he took that tacit knowledge and created his own explicit version which worked for him.

      Historian Keith Thomas talks about some of these traditions which he absorbed himself without having read some of the common advice (see London Review of Books https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v32/n11/keith-thomas/diary). He also indicates that he slowly evolved to some of the often advised practices like writing only on one side of a slip, though, like many, he completely omits to state the reason why this is good advice. We can all ignore these rich histories, but we'll probably do so at our own peril and at the expense of wasting some of our time to re-evolve the benefits.

      Why are so many here (and in other fora on these topics) showing up regularly to read and talk about their experiences? They're trying to glean some wisdom from the crowds of experimenters to make improvements. In addition to the slow wait for realtime results, I've "cheated" a lot and looked at a much richer historical record of wins and losses to gain more context of our shared intellectual history. I'm reminded of one of Goethe's aphorisms from Maxims and Reflections "Inexperienced people raise questions which were answered by the wise thousands of years ago."

  2. Oct 2022
    1. I would put creativity into three buckets. If we define creativity as coming up with something novel or new for a purpose, then I think what AI systems are quite good at the moment is interpolation and extrapolation.

      Demis Hassabis, the founder of DeepMind, classifies creativity in three ways: interpolation, extrapolation, and "true invention". He defines the first two traditionally, but gives a more vague description of the third. What exactly is "true invention"?

      How can one invent without any catalyst at all? How can one invent outside of a problem's solution space? outside of the adjacent possible? Does this truly exist? Or doesn't it based on definition.

  3. Sep 2022
    1. The humanities are intrinsically creative andinnovative. They are about originality and invention, notdiscovery. This is precisely Eco’s testimony; even more thana technical manual, this book is an invitation to ingenuity, atribute to imagination.

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  4. May 2022
    1. This art of method was understood by Ramus and Ramists as its own efficacious art of memory. InScholae in liberales artes, Ramus is explicit about his disdain for the visual mnemonic rules suggested byclassical sources.“The art of memory,”he counters,“consists entirely in division and composition. If weseek then an art which will divide and compose things, we shall find the art of memory”(qtd. in Yates 233).Ramus thus enfolds the fourth canon into his methodical framework, linking memorization of content withits“division and composition,”that is, with its organization.

      Arrangement and organization definitely have their place and can be helpful. However they may also tend to become too rigid to the point that one's thinking begins to lack creativity and invention. Where is the space for the Llullist arts of combinatorial thought here?

    1. name means a slit box in german as in like a slip of paper a box containing such slips of paper it was invented or at least the modern form was described by a sociologist 00:02:32 named nicholas lumon

      Another example of someone misattributing the invention of the zettelkasten to Niklas Luhmann. At least Soren Bjornstad modifies the attribution to say modern form, but I suspect that this is more of a verbal hedge more than being backed up with actual evidence, though perhaps the video will bear out more detail?

      The availability heuristic is so strong in Luhmann's case, that he is attributed the invention. I find that few people can point to or ever mention any others who used the method.

  5. Apr 2022
    1. , as a key historical technology ofinvention. I intend this last term in the precise sense in which Derrida(1989) understands it, that is, as an oscillation between theperformative and the constative, with the former working to disruptitself (the performative) and the latter (the constative) – or whatmight be termed the unsettling operation of invention.

      Derrida's definition of invention

  6. Mar 2022
    1. Ben Collins. (2022, February 28). Quick thread: I want you all to meet Vladimir Bondarenko. He’s a blogger from Kiev who really hates the Ukrainian government. He also doesn’t exist, according to Facebook. He’s an invention of a Russian troll farm targeting Ukraine. His face was made by AI. https://t.co/uWslj1Xnx3 [Tweet]. @oneunderscore__. https://twitter.com/oneunderscore__/status/1498349668522201099

  7. Jan 2022
    1. Jean Paul invented a similar system and called it Witz. Like Tesauro, Jean Paul considered that the matter was to cede a prearranged ge-ography of places where everything had its own seat but was also compelled to remain in its own seat without possible deviation. The dismantlement of this architecture was required to change the rhetorical invention--that is, the retrieval of what is already known but has been forgotten--into an invention in the modern, scientific sense of the term.73 Also similar to Tesauro, accord-ing to Jean Paul, such an invention or discovery could occur only through the jumbled recording of notes taken from readings (or, from personal reflections) and retrievable by means of a subject index. By searching and recombining, the compiler would have put into practice the chance principle on which the whole knowledge storage mechanism was based; he would have likely discov-ered similarities and connections between remote items that he would have otherwise overlooked.

      73 Cf. Götz Müller, Jean Pauls Exzerpte (Würzburg, 1988), 321–22

      I'm not quite sure I understand what the mechanism of this is specifically. Revisit it later. Sounds like it's using the set up the system not only to discover the adjacent possible but the remote improbable.

  8. Oct 2021
    1. I’ve been trying for the last year and a half to implement Ryan Holiday’s great index-card filing system for keeping ideas in place.

      I don't like the common framing I see in posts like this that want to credit a particular person for "inventing" a pattern like these that goes back centuries. The fact that we've lost these patterns is a terrible travesty.

  9. Jul 2021
    1. Not all the ancients are ancestors.

      I'll definitely grant this and admit that there may be independent invention or re-discovery of ideas.

      However, I'll also mention that it's far, far less likely that any of these people truly invented very much novel along the way, particularly since Western culture has been swimming in the proverbial waters of writing, rhetoric, and the commonplace book tradition for so long that we too often forget that we're actually swimming in water.

      It's incredibly easy to reinvent the wheel when everything around you is made of circles, hubs, and axles.

  10. Jun 2021
    1. Though it is often assumedthat mnemonics were used to memorize speeches, the importance of memory to theinventionofspeech was readily apparent to ancient orators—thus the famous praise of memory as athesauruminventorum(Herennium3.16.28). As Cicero writes inDe Oratore, the orator must commit tomemory“the whole past with its storehouse of examples and precedents,”as well as a knowledgeof all laws general and civil, for without such memories, the orator is left speechless (1.17–18).Expanding on Cicero’s point, Quintilian claims that“it is the power of memory alone that bringsbefore us all the store of precedents, laws, rulings, sayings, and facts which the orator must possessin abundance . . . and hold ready for immediate use”(Institutio11.2.1). The art of memory was thusto be used to recollect not only pre-written orations but also knowledge from a variety of sources tobe called upon when constructing new texts, speakingex tempore, or responding to an interlocutor’sarguments.

      Too often, this seems to me to be a missing piece that few talk about now. Those posting to the Art of Memory forum are usually talking about the need to memorize for memorization's sake. Rarely are they talking about or noticing the second or third level order changes as the result of an improved memory.

    2. In my view, the most detrimental result of this change to rhetorical theory is the loss of theclassical outlook that imagination and memory are central to invention

      I can agree with this.

  11. Aug 2020
  12. Mar 2019
  13. Jun 2018
    1. Must those not presentlyidentified as creative be shown in fact to be inventors in order tobe fully recognized? Thisquestion suggests that we need to pay close attention to the tensions and contradictionsthat arise when we adopt a strategy that distributes practices previously identifiedexclusively with certain people and places (for example, with privileged white menworking in elite institutions of science and technology) across a wider landscape (one thatincludes women). In distributing those practices more widely, they are givencorrespondingly greater presence. A counter project, therefore, is to question the valueplaced on innovation itself. The aim is to understand how a fascination with change andtransformation might not be universal, but rather specifically located and with particularpolitical consequences for women, both in termsof the possibilities that are available tothem, and the visibility of their already existing contributions.
  14. Mar 2017
    1. orego one identity for a startling new one

      This seems to continue the theme that I commented on from readings last week about invention. In rhetoric, invention becomes much more than finding a topic; it's about how rhetoric invents us. And again, a contrast with Cixous. If bodies and writing are multiple, then you don't forego one identity but sort of add on to identity, or realize all of the identities which make up each person.

    1. in-vention

      Even though this was originally French, I think use of the word "invention" is interesting. In rhetoric, invention is more along the lines of coming up with a topic, but the type of invention here is creating a new type of writing which would in turn disrupt hierarchies.

  15. Feb 2017
  16. Jan 2017
  17. Jun 2016
    1. Whereas topical forms of invention rely on fixed, generic heuristics, and predetermined analytical methods, choric forms prioritize the unpredictable, affective elements of personal experience across particular places and times as central to the inventive process.1 Our synthesis of the scholarship concerning choric invention identifies four primary principles: first, the consideration of space and place as agentive entities rather than as mere backdrop for human action; second, the juxtaposition of subjective experience against objective history; third, and quite similar to the second, a resistance to synthesis in favor of multiplicity; and fourth, and for our purposes here most important, its inability to be codified into a predetermined, stable, or teachable system.

      a nice summation of work on chora and choric invention. I wonder, though, how mobility might be added to this list. Thomas Rickert makes an interesting case for the ongoing attunement to ambient environments via a choric mode of thinking.

  18. Feb 2014
    1. Invention is a process that builds on prior thought, which is why the patent process INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY: POLICY FOR INNOVATION 9   requires disclosure of means and methods. For this reason, this paper will accept that intellectual property fails the Lockean Proviso, as suggested by Menell (1999, p. 129 ).
  19. Nov 2013
    1. It seeks a new realm and another channel for its activity, and it finds this in myth and in art generally.

      the stimulus for progress inventiveness

    2. Thus the genesis of language does not proceed logically in any case, and all the material within and with which the man of truth, the scientist, and the philosopher later work and build, if not derived from never-never land, is a least not derived from the essence of things.

      If language originally evolved as a tool of preservation, its roots are naturally based in self-interest for purposes of survival. That hasn't changed, we still rely on language and its conventions for survival. The point being, that we tend to forget that definitions and conventions are based in, derived from, arbitrary inventions.

    1. invention is a process which supplies arguments, whereas arrangement is a different process which organizes arguments.

      The definitions of invention and arrangement.

    2. Quintilian decrees that there are five parts to the art of rhetoric - I shall talk about these afterwards - invention, arrangement, style, memory, and delivery.

      Quintilian's five parts of rhetoric.

  20. Sep 2013
    1. But I urge all who intend to acquaint themselves with my speech, first, to make allowance, as they listen to it, for the fact that it is a mixed discourse, composed with an eye to all these subjects; next, to fix their attention even more on what is about to be said than on what has been said before; and, lastly, not to seek to run through the whole of it at the first sitting, but only so much of it as will not fatigue the audience.16

      Pay attention to what is about to be said is a never ending task.