Friday musings

Friday, May 20, 2011

Reading around the web:

  • If the world ends tomorrow, will you be glad you spent a few of your years in an MFA program? Read more on the perpetual debate about the value of creative writing programs by Laura Miller: “Where MFA programs may have their biggest effect is on those run-of-the-mill students who get a chance to live in a literary milieu and be taken seriously by other writers for a couple of years before they ultimately decide to move on to other aspirations.” Agree or disagree?
  • Poet and professor Catherine Carter recalls a snapshot of a non-writer who once crossed her path, whose serendipitously timed recitation of memorized poetry renewed her sense of purpose in reading books.
  • Popular blogger Maud Newton reflects on turning forty tomorrow, existential dread, and readiness for the Rapture: “What the hell, in other words, am I doing with my life?” Happy birthday, Maud!

And a few snippets on technology:

  • Amazon now sells more Kindle e-books than hardcover and paperback books combined. This article in Treehugger focuses more on environmental impact.
  • A Miratech study says readers spend an equal amount of time per article on iPad or in a print newspaper, but the eye scans more over the iPad and retention of information is better for the newspaper.
  • The New York Public Library has released its first issue of Biblion, a new iPad app that accesses essays and other materials from the library’s rich archives, in this version on the topic of the World’s Fair. “This app is designed to open up hidden parts of the collections and the myriad storylines they hold and preserve...through a unique immersive experience.” And it’s free.