National Research Lobachevsky State University of Nizhni Novgorod
Antinomy of text in the interface: Continuity and discreteness
Abstract. This paper presents an approach to examining text in the digital environment, focusing on both the features of a conceptual perception of text and its essential properties, associated with its specific organization in the digital environment. The author relies on a linguistic definition of text as a written message, objectified in the form of a written document that contains a series of statements combining different types of lexical, grammatical, and logical connections. The paper distinguishes the features of the conceptual perception of text and the essential properties conditioned by the digital background of the place it is represented on. The author provides an analysis of the constituent characteristics of the digital environment that constitutes it and, proceeding from them, differentiates the features of digital textuality associated with materiality of its medium – discreteness and variability. Their manifestation becomes most evident in contact with the interface, which, on the one hand, communicates with the person through the text, and on the other – provides arrays of texts to view. Based on this analysis, the paper focuses on how text in the digital environment is included in interactions with humans, how it undergoes restrictions and which qualities it acquires. This suggests some changes in the conceptualization of the written – another model of text perception is emerging, in which text appears as an antinomic phenomenon, both continuous and discrete. This contributes to transformations in the perception of information as a whole and the methods of its generation. The author relies on the works by such media theorists, as Lev Manovich and Alexander Galloway, as well as on the theory of cognitive metaphor by J. Lakoff and M. Johnson.
Keywords: continuity, discreteness, text, interface, digital environment, media theory, cognitive metaphor
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