In Our Time: A podcast series devoted to some of the important recent moments in the history of computing.
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CHANGING IDENTITIES: THE KNOWN WORLD

Shifting names and identities has been a recurring theme in these Podcasts.  Now it is time for the Podcasts itself to adopt to a new name.  

For 4 years, these Podcasts have had a split identity.  The column was called "The Known World" and the podcasts were called "In Our Time."  From henceforth, they will have a single name: "The Known World."

The reason for the split is complicated to explain.  I was originally asked to write a column on historical themes to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the ENIAC.  Being fond of irony, I called it "In Our Time," which suggested to me that the historical ideas had real impact on our lives.  When I was asked to continue the column, I wanted to distance the work from history, even though I continued to use historical examples.  Hence I took the name "The Known World" as it suggested, in an ironical sense, things that we did not know or took for granted.  

In the switch, it was difficult to change the name of the podcast, so it remained "In Our Time."  But now we have an opportunity realign the two on a single title, so we are going to use "The Known World" exclusively.

Some readers noted that both titles had literary antecedents.  I have wanted to record the stories of computers and computing people in a literary language, in words that captured the depth and intensity of their word.  If I have done even a little of that, I will be pleased.  So from today, we will have a single name.  It is The Known World.

You can find it at www.computer.org/theknownworld.

The Value of a Good Name

 

In the modern age, identity may not be a name or a number. It's a story. And the question may be
"who owns it?"

The Age of Accountability

 

The failure of a complex product tells just as much about how the organization operates as it does about the skill of individual workers.

Utter Chaos

 

No matter what we may believe, scientific practice often begins with a season when we don't know what we know.

Someday, You Will Understand

 

Invention and discovery are both creative acts, and both require us to place new ideas within a context or infrastructure.

Raising Barns

 

Who stands watch over a software engineering project to ensure that a job is well done and every individual has learned what he or she needs to know?

Designing the Future

 

A good technological design requires substantial effort that shapes both the social and technical sides of an artifact.

A Look Back, A Look Ahead

 

The origins of the podcast and what lies ahead.

Honor Among Thieves

 

Without a human organization that can sift information and raise the gold from the dust, knowledge will die as rumor and innuendo will overwhelm any truth that may be making the rounds.

Bad Alignment

 

Potential customers will be interested in new technology only if it somehow makes their lives better--if it moves them toward a goal they hold for themselves, their family, their company.

The Marketplace of Ideas: Part 4

 

Like many of the accomplishments of software engineering, connecting the grid to a virtual machine is a way of hiding information, of allowing programmers to focus on the task they want to complete and ignore details beyond that task.

The Marketplace of Ideas: Part 3


Like many of the accomplishments of software engineering, connecting the grid to a virtual machine is a way of hiding information, of allowing programmers to focus on the task they want to complete and ignore details beyond that task.

The Marketplace of Ideas: Part 2

Like many of the accomplishments of software engineering, connecting the grid to a virtual machine is a way of hiding information, of allowing programmers to focus on the task they want to complete and ignore details beyond that task.

The Marketplace of Ideas

 

Like many of the accomplishments of software engineering, connecting the grid to a virtual machine is a way of hiding information, of allowing programmers to focus on the task they want to complete and ignore details beyond that task.

Data of the Night: Part 4

 

Gunshot detection systems are a form of geographical information system, a technology that has expanded rapidly in the past two decades and has substantially altered how we deal with the physical landscape.

Data of the Night: Part 3

 

Gunshot detection systems are a form of geographical information system, a technology that has expanded rapidly in the past two decades and has substantially altered how we deal with the physical landscape.

Data of the Night: Part 2

 

Gunshot detection systems are a form of geographical information system, a technology that has expanded rapidly in the past two decades and has substantially altered how we deal with the physical landscape.

Data of the Night

Gunshot detection systems are a form of geographical information system, a technology that has expanded rapidly in the past two decades and has substantially altered how we deal with the physical landscape.

Welcome to the Family: Part 4

 

Becoming a professional means joining the family, with all the rights, responsibilities, and discipline that come with membership.

Welcome to the Family: Part 3

 

Part Three of Welcome to the Family by David Alan Grier

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