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Authors@MIT

Authors@MIT series kicks off with Meryl Alper's Giving Voice

Authors@MIT series kicks off with Meryl Alper's Giving Voice

This month the MIT Press Bookstore is launching an exciting new series of events, Authors@MIT. The series features authors and experts on the cutting edge of topics that we all need to know more about, among them: young people and new media, business innovation, life in a digitally defined world, the intersection of science and art, the future of technology, the nature of knowledge, and more. While most of the events will be at the Press Bookstore, some will take place at other area venues, in collaboration with the Boston Book Festival, the Cambridge Public Library, Le Laboratoire, local restaurants, and other partners.

On Tuesday, February 28 Meryl Alper will kick off the series with a talk on her book Giving Voice: Mobile Communication, Disability, and Inequality, which explores how communication technologies meant to empower people with speech disorders—to give voice to the voiceless—are still subject to disempowering structural inequalities. Meryl Alper is a professor of Communication Studies at Northeastern University and a Faculty Associate with Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society. In the following excerpt from Giving Voice, Alper discusses various understandings of "voice" and why this is important.

Five Minutes with Luis Perez-Breva

Five Minutes with Luis Perez-Breva

Innovating is for doers: you don’t need to wait for an earth-shattering idea, but can build one with a hunch and scale it up to impact. Luis Perez-Breva discusses his new book, Innovating: A Doer's Manifesto for Starting from a Hunch, Prototyping Problems, Scaling Up, and Learning to Be Productively Wrong. Catch his talk at the MIT Press Bookstore on Tuesday, March 21st at 5:30pm to hear more.

Your book is a “doer’s manifesto.” Who are “doers”?

There are many ways to look at them. A doer is anybody who thinks about trying something first before stressing out about whether this will be a dramatic multibillion dollar enterprise at the end of the day.  These are people who fix stuff when they see it’s broken (at your home or somewhere else), people whose first instinct when they see a problem is to put a few pieces together and see if they can make it make sense. It’s people who can only understand things when they connect their brain and their hands. We call them hackers, hobbyists, nerds, DIY enthusiasts.

Authors@MIT: Reflecting on "The Chinese Typewriter"

Authors@MIT: Reflecting on "The Chinese Typewriter"

Recently Tom Mullaney, author of The Chinese Typewriter, gave a talk at the MIT Press Bookstore. This is one staff member's takeaway from the talk.