This paper discusses some of the founding work in the field of probabalistic mathematics (that of Jakob Bernoulli, the seventeenth-century Swiss scientist). By discussing similarities between Bernoulli's formulation of the mathematics to evaluate the probability of any given event and the forensic (or courtroom) rhetorics which Bernoulli had studied in school, this paper suggests that the foundations of probabilistic mathematics might well be rooted in part in forensic rhetoric. This is important to technical communication because it historicizes the origin of positivism in mathematical technical discourses.
The XML format was developed in the 1990s in a hope to develop a universal format for documents, replacing proprietary binary formats that couldn’t integrate with one another. And we’re beginning to see the results. In this talk, Dr. Geoffrey Sauer will present an introduction to XML, with an overview that will explain to people who’re not familiar with it why this is a good thing, and how we can begin to use XML formats to our advantage as technical communicators.
The current proliferation of hermeneutic resources with a linguistic base--pragmatics, speech act theory, classical rhetoric theory, Burkean analysis, conversational analysis, Habermasian communicative action--is an embarras de richesse. Surely, at this point, we need, not another theory, but rather an attempt at synthesis, an attempt to turn this hermeneutic plentitude into a single theory. In this paper, we propose to take an initial step in this direction, to attempt to marry pragmatics and rhetoric. But given the theoretical exfoliation that has marked these areas, such a marriage can be managed only by imposing very strict limitations on the scope of our enterprise. We believe, however, that we can take a step in our preferred direction by addressing the more specific problem of whether the theory of Paul Grice, the father of pragmatics, is compatible with the theory of Aristotle, the father of rhetoric. We intend to do so by reconstructing Aritotelian rhetoric as a pragmatics.
A. L. Becker’s 'modern philology' is an approach to discourse rooted in multifaceted explorations of particular texts: a line from Emerson, a Southeast Asian proverb, a Javanese shadow play. He explains 'autopoiesis' this way: 'One of the tenets of the gaggle of ideas calle ‘autopoiesis’ is that languaging is orientational, mostly. A says something to B -- and no ‘message’ is ‘transmitted’ -- rather what A says orients B (and him/herself, of course). But the orientation of A is not the orientation of B, except to the extent they have the same reactions to prior texts (lingual memories).
Discusses some critical methodologies we may wish to use in order to make sense of the changes which have occurred in mass media post-1976. It is rather important to understand this history -- the reasons we think the current Internet is confusing is precisely because of the reorganization it represents in the balance of power between ruling interests in our society. In the end, I argue, the Internet is another step in the increasing influence of media and publishing interests, and it is important to read news in online space as part of that history.
Starting with the development of Caterpillar Fundamental English in the 1970's, industry has made several attempts to formalize and standardize the writing process, both to promote consistency and quality for the reader and to improve the possibilities for automatic text processing (e.g. translation to other languages). In this presentation, I will review the work we have done at the Language Technologies Institute on a software environment for automatic document checking, specifically to address the issue of how such environments can be productive (and hence useful) for the technical writer.
This talk presents a case study which followed a graduate course in public policy. This course attempted to construct knowledge around a community based problem in collaboration with community members. The talk covers both the successes and difficulties of this research project.
A qualitative glance at how people in contemporary, heterogeneous communications environments--especially those involved in collaborative enterprises--were handling multiple communication events and the incoming and outgoing products of their communications, for example, texts, files, e-texts parked on shared file servers, e-texts parked on a user's hard-disk, web pages and useful http addresses, all of those sorts of things.