#ToCcon: A (useful?) digression

Yesterday afternoon Porter Anderson took me for my first visit to MoMA. For both of us last moment of calm before the storm of ideas that will flood the next three days of Tools of Change. Porter was telling me how the new gallery was designed by architect Yoshio Taniguchi. I’ve thought a lot about this superb building in the hours since. It’s an extraordinarily discreet structure that both provides a strong framework for exhibitions, and yet which recedes unobtrusively behind the priceless artworks displayed there. There are galleried areas with vertiginous views down the atrium, and windows cut into walls that offer glimpses of visitors to other galleries: watching them and their responses to art you can’t see, provides framed moments of experience.

I’m wondering if this wonderful gallery is a metaphor for publishers. What publishers provide is a framework for creativity to find a route to market. What the publisher actually does recedes behind the artistry on display. But to flourish in the shortening supply chain, publishers need to get better at providing clarity on what it is they are doing and how they add value. They need to cut some windows into their walls, so authors can see better what it is they are doing, and demonstrate the value of the structures they provide…

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2 Responses to #ToCcon: A (useful?) digression

  1. Pilar Wyman says:

    Yes, cut some windows into the walls, not only so authors can see better what it is they are doing, but also so readers can see what lies within. APIs and indexes, the time is now. –Nice posting! I’m sorry I didn’t get to MOMA this time. Glad you did.

    • Sheila says:

      Thanks, Pilar. And I am sorry I didn’t meet you in person – although I did see you surrounded by people!

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