June, 2021: 42 posts.
New Bot Day! Rock ’Em Sock ’Em Robots was developed by Marvin Glass and Associates in the 1960s. Originally the toy was meant to represent human boxers, but the death in the ring of of Davey Moore in 1963 the project was scrapped. But the toy was fun. The company “de-humanized” the figures. They were robots that fall apart, not a person that falls over. They have science fictional backstories: “Red Rocker” from Soltarus II fights “Blue Bomber, pride of Umgluck.” I wonder when we started using robots to stand in to let us enjoy entertaining violence? Endless streams of battle droids are shot, dismembered, and crushed in Star Wars movies and animation, to comical effect. Contrast that with the moving death of K-2SO in Rogue One. We are selective about which robots we choose to think of as worthy of dignity. Empathy turns out to be a creative choice not just for the creator but for the viewer. It’s worth interrogating our hearts when we cheer and laugh about violence being done to others. Sometimes, it’s just a toy. Sometimes, not.
New Bot Day! Marvin (the paranoid android) first appeared on radio in 1978 in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and in books, tv, and film. This iteration is from 2005. It’s a solid design, but my favorite is the 1981 television version. Marvin is super-intelligent, with “a brain the size of the planet” but is nevertheless depressed. #h2g2 #marvintheparanoidandroid
Crystal Pier is behind me. It’s along this few hundred yards of beach where I believe I first rode a wave. I was 3 or 4 years old on an inflatable rubber mat guided by my father. Worrying my mother. Encouraged by my aunties and uncles. It’s a vivid memory. Surfers call the intense good feeling riding waves “stoke.” The current was strong and the waves not great for bodysurfing today but I got the feeling. Lean into whatever gives you #stoke. It’s important.
In May I attended a fascinating presentation on adapting comics for blind and low vision readers. At one time I was quite attentive to a11y issues and since I’ve made a handful of comics it was of interest. I am nowhere near to attacking this need. But the resources they emailed I felt would be useful to share widely, so here they are.
Thank you again for attending our March program, “Adapting Comics for Blind & Low Vision Readers”!
If you want to watch again or share the program, you can do so here: Adapting Comics Panel Video.
If you can spare two minutes to share your experience and hopes for where this topic might go in the future, it will greatly assist our efforts! Take the event survey here.
To learn more about the event organizers:
- For more information about digital multimedia accessibility, follow the SF State VI Program on YouTube/Twitter/Instagram/YouTube: @VIProgramSFSU
- To learn more about Comics studies at SFSU, visit: https://twitter.com/StudiesComics
- To subscribe to more events hosted by the Longmore Institute on Disability, join the Longmore newsletter here or follow us on Twitter/Instagram @LongmoreInst or on Facebook.
The compiled list of resources our attendees offered during the webinar:
- Co-designing choice: objectivity, aesthetics and agency in audio-description
- American Council of the Blind’s Audio Description Project
- Center for the Study of Public Domain
- Shape Reader
- Alt Text as Poetry
- Catalonia in Venice: Blind-wiki
- LongmoreInstitute YouTube Channel
- Graphic Audio
- Webcomic: TLC
- LibriVox Volunteers
- Hit Record
- Daisy Consortium
- CELA Library
- National Network for Equitable Library Service
- Screen Readable Comics
- “Cripping” the Comic Con
- “It’s Complicated”: Negotiating Accessibility and (Mis)Representation in Image Descriptions of Race, Gender, and Disability
- Tall Print Braille
- Audio Comics Company
- NPR: NYC Mayor LaGuardia’s Legendary Radio Readings
- Summary of the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled
- Wolverine Podcast
- Comic Weekly Man
- Bendis’s scripts
- Citizen White Cane
- ComicsML – XML for digital comics
Via The Inertia:
One has only to watch a swarm of bathers at any crowded beach in order to see that thousands of people are interested in the sport. Whenever a good wave for riding comes in, about half the people make an attempt to ride it, and only about one-tenth of one percent of them even get started on it. It is this pitiful sight of thousands of swimmers, young and old, men and women, always trying and never succeeding, that has urged me to put into print a few hints that I hope will be of some help in teaching the enthusiastic beach-goers the art of body surfing, and thus increase a thousandfold the pleasure derived from ocean bathing.
Seems like it’s mostly in college libraries.
…and good for me, I know.
In recent years, there has been a push from scientists around the world to understand the positive affect exposure to nature plays on the human psyche. In his best-selling book Blue Mind, marine biologist Wallace J. Nichols makes the case that being in and around water has therapeutic benefits that can make humans happier, healthier, and more connected.
via The Inertia