Roots of Progress on Agriculture →March 31, 2020 • #
On Roots of Progress, Jason Crawford is now diving into the history of agriculture, with an interesting change to his process about writing on the history of technological discovery.
In this series, he’s approaching it with “the garage door up” — writing in the open shorter-form posts as he studies things like the stages of agriculture, where enclosures come from, and other concepts.
My goals are: to bring to the surface more of my half-formed thoughts, by forcing myself to write about them; to create a new type of content for you, my audience; to model good epistemic norms; and to get early pointers, references, feedback—and pushback.
Again, this is an experiment. Risks: lowering signal-to-noise ratio; overwhelming some parts of my audience with too much content. If you don’t want to read a bunch of shorter, more informal posts, feel free to skim/skip them and just read my occasional long-form comprehensive summaries, which I will continue to write every few weeks or so.
- The Rise and Fall of the R&D Lab — Ben Southwood on what happened with the corporate research centers of the mid-20th century.
- The UNIX System — Brian Kernighan, Dennis Ritchie, and Ken Thompson from Bell Labs on UNIX.
- The Rise and Fall of Minicomputers —