Please join CUNY DHI and the Digital Praxis Seminar in welcoming
for a talk on physical computing and the humanities.
Monday, October 21st
Skylight Room (9100).
The Hands-On Imperative
The idea that “making is thinking,” as Richard Sennett puts it, has always had some place in the humanities. Until recently, however, it was costly and difficult to produce physical objects. Now online maker communities, powerful design software, cloud-based services, desktop fabrication and physical computing make it almost as easy for people to make and share artifacts as information or software. I describe how to set up a makerspace and fab lab for humanists, and why you might want to.
William Turkel is engaged in computational history, big history, STS, physical computing, desktop fabrication and electronics. His new monograph, Spark from the Deep, is now available. Turkel is currently working on a study of attempts to build a self-replicating device, from the machine tools of the Industrial Revolution to the RepRaps of today. As part of this research, he has built a series of 3D printers and other CNC tools. The other project Turkel is working on is a study of mid-20th-century analog electronic computing. Turkel teaches Max 6 programming to undergraduates in Western’s new digital humanities option, and to grad students in the interactive exhibit design course. Turkel is also teaching a new graduate course on digital research methods that makes use of command line tools in Linux virtual machines. You can find him on Twitter at @williamjturkel