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Future Text Publishing

Welcome to the Future Text Publishing company, producers of the Future of Text.

Growing out of the annual Symposium on The Future of Text, we have put together a book on the possible futures of text which has turned out to be the largest survey of the future(S) of text ever undertaken, with a wide range of different perspectives and inspirations.

The book is a collection of dreams for how we want text to evolve as well as how we understand our current textual infrastructures, how we view the history of writing, and much more. The aim is to make it inspire a powerfully rich future of text in a multitude of ways today and to still have value in a thousand years and beyond. It should serve as a record for how we saw the medium of text and how it relates to our world, our problems and each other in the early twenty first century.

opening quote

“The thing that amazed me – even humbled me – about the digital computer when I first encountered it over fifty years ago – was that, in the computer, I saw that we have a tool that does not just move earth or bend steel, but we have a tool that actually can manipulate symbols and, even more importantly, portray symbols in new ways, so that we can interact with them and learn. We have a tool that radically extends our capabilities in the very area that makes us most human, and most powerful.”

“There is a native American myth about the coyote, a native dog of the American prairies – how the coyote incurred the wrath of the gods by bringing fire down from heaven for the use of mankind, making man more powerful than the gods ever intended. My sense is that computer science has brought us a gift of even greater power, the ability to amplify and extend our ability to manipulate symbols…”

“We need to become better at being humans. Learning to use symbols and knowledge in new ways, across groups, across cultures, is a powerful, valuable, and very human goal. And it is also one that is obtainable, if we only begin to open our minds to full, complete use of computers to augment our most human of capabilities.”
Douglas C. Engelbart


EDITOR: Frode Hegland

Adam Cheyer • Adam Kampff • Alessio Antonini • Alex Holcombe • Amaranth Borsuk • Amira Hanafi • Amos Paul Kennedy Jr. • Ann Bessemans & María Pérez Mena • Andries Van Dam • Anthon Botha • Belinda Barnet • Ben Schneiderman • Bernard Vatant • Bob Frankston • Bob Horn • Bob Stein • Catherine C. Marshall • Charles Bernstein  Chris Gebhardt • Chris Messina • Christian Bök • Christopher Gutteridge • Claus Atzenbeck • Danila Medvedev • Daveed Benjamin • Dave King • Dave Winer • David De Roure • David Jablonowski • David Johnson • David M. Durant • David Millard • David Owen Norris • David Price • David Weinberger • Dene Grigar • Denise Schmandt-Besserat • Derek Beaulieu • Doc Searls • Douglas Crockford • Duke Crawford • Ed Leahy • Elaine Treharne • Élika Ortega • Esther Dyson • Ewan Clayton • Fiona Ross • Fred Benenson • Garrett Stewart • Gyuri Lajos • Harold Thimbleby • Howard Oakley • Howard Rheingold • Ian Cooke • Jack Park • James Baker • James O’Sullivan • Jamie Blustein • Jane Yellowlees Douglas • Jay David Bolter • Jeremy Helm • Jesse Grosjean • Jessica Rubart • Joe Corneli • Joel Swanson • Johanna Drucker • Johannah Rodgers • John Armstrong • John Cayle • John-Paul Davidson • Joris J. van Zundert • Judy Malloy  • Kari Kraus & Matthew Kirschenbaum • Keith Houston • Kenny Hemphill • Ken Perlin • Leigh Nash • Leslie Carr • Leslie Lamport • Livia Polanyi • Lori Emerson • Lynette Chiang • Manuela González • Marc-Antoine Parent • Marc Canter • Mark Anderson • Mark Baker • Mark Bernstein • Martin Kemp • Martin Tiefenthaler • Maryanne Wolf • Matt Mullenweg  Michael Joyce • Mike Zender • Naomi S. Baron • Nasser Hussain • Neil Jefferies • Nick Montfort  Panda Mery • Patrick Lichty • Paul Smart • Peter Cho • Peter Flynn • Phil Gooch • Pip Willcox • Rafael Nepô • Raine Revere • Richard A. Carter • Richard Price • Rollo Carpenter • Sage Jenson & Kit Kuksenok • Shane Gibson • Sam Brooker • Sarah Walton • Scott Rettberg • Sofie Beier • Sonja Knecht • Stephan Kreutzer • Stephanie Strickland • Stephen Lekson • Stevan Harnad • Steve Newcomb • Ted Nelson • Teodora Petkova • Tiago Forte • Timothy Donaldson • Tim Ingold • Timur Schukin • Tom Standage • Tor Nørretranders • Vinton G. Cerf • Ward Cunningham • Dame Wendy Hall • Zuzana Husárová

POSTSCRIPT: Ismail Serageldin


The original site for the book is part of the Future of Text website:

Future Text Publishing is a trade name for The Liquid Information Company: © 2020 Frode Hegland

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