Commonplace book

Here we give links to the principle of the commonplace book - one of the foundations of wiki writing and reading - and federated wiki as a technology for making commpnplace books.

Indeiweb article: *Commpnplace book* page > The general concept of the commonplace book dates to the 1500's (though earlier precursors exist) as books became more common in society. Often due to the exorbitant cost of texts, readers would read and take notes from them into their commonplace books for future contemplation, providing direct quotations at a later date, or future reference prior to returning the book to its owner or passing it along to another. In some sense they became repositories for marginalia, highlights and notes one wanted to keep after the possession of a book was released.

Stephen B Johnson describes historical origins of the present-day practice of maintaining a common-place book. > Johnson 2010 - *The Glass Box And The Commonplace Book* page

> . . just about anyone with intellectual ambition in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries was likely to keep a commonplace book. In its most customary form, “commonplacing,” as it was called, involved transcribing interesting or inspirational passages from one’s reading, assembling a personalized encyclopedia of quotations. It was a kind of solitary version of the original web logs: an archive of interesting tidbits that one encountered during one’s textual browsing. The great minds of the period — Milton, Bacon, Locke — were zealous believers in the memory-enhancing powers of the commonplace book. There is a distinct self-help quality to the early descriptions of commonplacing’s virtues: in the words of one advocate, maintaining the books enabled one to “lay up a fund of knowledge, from which we may at all times select what is useful in the several pursuits of life.

MC Morgan discusses how a digital commpnplace book - in the form of a wiki - might be used, in contrast to other, less adventurous uses. > Morgan's Log - 2010 *From personal wiki to open text and how to get there* blog > Rather than going back to the commonplace book to mine it for … uh … commonplaces, I would return to the wiki to develop matters further. As I did, it would become more of a personal knowledge space . .

Mike Caulfield in 2015 meditates on how federated wiki enables new interests to be underpinned thro commonplace-book practice. Along the way, he gets into (and past) the established discourses of Open Educational Resources, and Learning Design. Also, into and past Twitter and Facebook. > Mike Caulfield 2015 *The Garden and the Stream: A Technopastoral* blog > . . when you get to that point, where you’ve mapped out 1000s of articles of your own knowledge you start to see impacts on your thought that are very hard to describe. . . I am going to make the argument that the predominant form of the social web — that amalgam of blogging, Twitter, Facebook, forums, Reddit, Instagram — is an impoverished model for learning and research and that our survival as a species depends on us getting past the sweet, salty fat of “the web as conversation” and on to something more timeless, integrative, iterative, something less personal and less self-assertive, something more solitary yet more connected. > . . On the web, if you wanted to read something you had to read it on someone else’s server where you couldn’t rewrite it, and you couldn’t annotate it, you couldn’t copy it, and you couldn’t add links to it, you couldn’t curate it. > . . (In the neglected Memex model) Your machine is a library not a publication device. You have copies of documents is there that you control directly, that you can annotate, change, add links to, summarize, and this is because the memex is a tool to think with, not a tool to publish with. . . These are the verbs of gardening, and they didn’t exist on the early web. > . . I think maybe we’re starting to see a shift. In 2015, out of nowhere, we saw web annotation break into the mainstream. This is a garden technology that has risen and fallen so many times, and suddenly people just get it. Suddenly web annotation, which used to be hard to explain, makes sense to people. When that sort of thing happens culturally it’s worth looking closely at.