The Magic Printing Press

Using a blog is more akin to using a journal than a printing press. We write things down letter by letter. Yes, there may be many abstracted procedures underneath that makes a computer more like a printing press, but the experience says otherwise. A typewriter is still writing.

But interfacing with code to take that experience away from you? Then I start to see the procedural underworking. Then I start to see the printing press.

Glitch has been an eye-opening experience in regards to how I use Write.as for this exact reason. The distraction-free editor is not the only place I could write these posts.

Glitch can work like a printing press. The code grabs the words that I want to set – anything from RSS Feeds to web annotations to tags from my blog. Then, in conjunction with Write.as, it presses the words onto the post. Any time someone wants to access the post I can make them go through Glitch, which does its magic and spits out an updated post. My pinned Annotations post is an example.

But even the printing press analogy feels off. Write.as interfaces with the machinations of the printing process. Without the API, I cannot push any text to a post. Write.as is not merely paper. It is magic paper. In this confusion I am reminded of Clarke's third law:

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.