archives and attics

🌱 seedling There seems to be a popular belief that an archive is where you put things you don’t need anymore. They remain there, safe for when you need them, but they require no maintenance. In our personal knowledge management systems, in our code bases, wherever, you just throw things in there. That is not an archive. That is an attic. Archives require maintenance, care, and intention. They require workers who catalog the materials of people and institutions....

May 11, 2022 · 1 min · jay l. colbert

my digital garden is rhizomatic

🌱 budding and almost ready to split into Zettels My note seedlings don’t take root and branch off, with branches returning to a single point (the trunk of the tree). My note seedlings are, instead, rhizomes. The notes and ideas don’t have one origin point. “Branches can grow out of any spot towards any direction.”1 “Rhizomes, however, do not function according to representation. Nothing in a rhizome represents something else....

May 11, 2022 · 1 min · jay l. colbert

archival silence

🌱 seedling archival silence In particular, archival silence often happens in collections relating to Indigenous people and enslaved people. How do we ethically describe resources about people we have power over, historically or otherwise, if information about them was never never collected? How do we bring attention to these silences? I also want to argue a bit with the “represent the past accurately” portion of the SAA’s definition here. Can we ever represent the past accurately?...

May 9, 2022 · 1 min · jay l. colbert

personal knowledge management

🌱 seedling For all of human history knowledge has been controlled and held by the elite and powerful and privileged. —Carrie Ben-Ysrael When we have control over how we relate to information and knowledge, that can be a radical act. When others control our relationship to information, it shapes our reality in ways we might not notice. It also affects how we construct the social identities of ourselves and others....

May 8, 2022 · 1 min · jay l. colbert