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Hanh Ta

Project Gutenburg – Horror Stories

  • The Golgotha Dancers by Manly Wade Wellman


‘The Golgotha Dancers’ is about a painting. This was not your ordinary painting but a cursed painting. One day, a man went to the museum, and a painting caught his eye. This was called the Golgotha painting. Beneath it was a script “I sold my soul that I might paint a living picture.” No signature or other to the artist’s identity. The guard told him someone had left this painting and hung it up themself. He found the painting captivating and nothing more of it. The guard was going to get rid of the painting, but the man decided to take it home. During the night, the man had nightmares about the painting. The painting came alive. He was frightened as he woke up “something held me tight by the wrist.” Later in the story, he finds that the painting is a curse. A lady neighbor came over, sliced the cursed painting, and placed it into the fireplace. At the end of the story, the last sentence, “All at once, I knew that I loved her.”

  • The Dangerous Scarecrow by Carl Jacobi


‘The Dangerous Scarecrow’ is about the Tapping family. They had two kids, Jimmy and Stella. They live on a farm, and on that farm, initially, before they moved, there were two farmers—Mr. Maudsley and Mr. Trask. Both neighbors were competitive when it came to corn. One day both of them disappeared, but their scarecrows remained. Mr.Maudlsey moved to New Orleans, and Mr.Trask made himself invisible (Mr. Trask was into voodoo spells). But their scarecrows remained, and Jimmy and Stella named their scarecrows after the old farmers—Mr. Maudsley and Mr. Trask. One day Jimmy found an old rusty knife (a voodoo knife). He was planning on giving it to Mr. Maudsley because the knife was found in his barn. But Stella told Jimmy not to give it to Mr. Maudsley and give it to Mr. Trask instead. Later the night, Jimmy and Stella saw the two shadows locked in an incredible embrace. Mr. Trask chopped Mr. Maudsley’s head off. The following day, news came, and it was about a fellow in New Orleans with his head cut off right in the middle of a city street. It was Mr. Maudsley.

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The Future of the Book

The ‘Future Book’ is here, but it’s not what we expected
Visionaries thought technology would change books. Instead, it’s changed everything about publishing a book. 

For almost 300 years, books have been the primary means of gathering and sharing information. They were the way that people learned, shared stories, and spent their free time, but has their time come and gone? The technological age has introduced a new way to read that has redefined how we think about books.

In the last decade, the field of e-readers has exploded in popularity. It is now more common for people to buy a tablet or laptop than to purchase a traditional hardcover book. The flexibility and convenience offered by these devices, such as being able to download a book instantly onto an iPad and read it on a bus, are part of what draws people to them. Indeed, the future of books, as we know them, seems to have changed. 

What does the future book really hold? What’s in store for books? The trend is moving towards the eBook as a major source for younger readers. But why are people moving towards eBooks? It is said that eBooks are easily obtainable. With the advent of the cloud, cloud-based books are also available online, in a similar way to the downloadable eBooks from retailers. Audio books are another form of digital seller that holds numerous benefits. Audio books are a great way to increase your understanding of a specific topic or theme without having to focus all of your attention on the book alone. Also readers and writers are benefiting from AI and the digital age. 

Everything has changed. So what will become of the Future Book?

The Future Book was meant to be interactive, moving, alive. Its pages were supposed to be lush with whirling doodads, responsive, hands-on. The old paperback Zork choose-your-own-adventures were just the start. The Future Book would change depending on where you were, how you were feeling. It would incorporate your very environment into its story —the name of the coffee shop you were sitting at, your best friend’s birthday. It would be sly, maybe a little creepy. Definitely programmable. Ulysses would extend indefinitely in any direction you wanted to explore; just tap and some unique, mega-mind-blowing sui generis path of machine learned words would wind itself out before your very eyes. 

But What if? 

Future: We’re here. 

It’s 2053. You stroll into the  Center of Mind Chip. There you can purchase a brain chip to augment your intelligence or a bundle of several such chips. People wishing for intellectual-like storytelling abilities can purchase the “storytime” chip while those in the market for supreme serenity can now buy “Zen Garden.” And that’s just the beginning. Enhanced attention, virtuoso musical abilities, mathematical abilities, and so much more are all there for the choosing! Along with the chips, it will be connected through our eye glasses for the visual content that you desire. Similar to the apps on your phones, you can now swipe to a program which your mind is in charge and can take you to. Which would you pick?

Welcome! You have chosen the “storytime” chip. You are now able to create stories within a limited time with the help of AI. This also forms into a device that is connected to a library where all data is stored for those who have chosen the “storytime” chip. 

You are currently in “The Library of Nonhuman Books.” The Library of Nonhuman Books is a custom-designed, autonomous art-system which uses Artificial Intelligence to make new books from existing publications and incoming stories.

Are you interested in poetries? The Library of Nonhuman Books was inspired by Stéphane Mallarmé. Stéphane Mallarmé was a French poet who knew the relation between empty space and silence. Mallarmé believed that a poem was more than a mere arrangement of words. He suggests that readers view “Un coup de Dés,” he refers to the act of writing as a “musical score, making the page into a stage in which language performs” (Borsuk, 135). With our “storytime” chip, you can now think and possibly create poems or stories like Mallarmé and any of your other favorite authors. As long as we see a reference of the author’s book, we can help you. 

“Everything in the world exists in order to end up as a book.”
—Stéphane Mallarmé, “The Book, Spiritual Instrument”

Inspired by Mallarmé, at the center of this system is a reading machine which leverages Computer Vision and Natural Language Processing to find new meanings hidden within books. Through a process of erasure, the machine algorithmically redacts the text leaving only the selected words. And an internet search retrieves an image to illustrate the page based on the resulting text. One every page is processed, the newly ‘illuminated’ books are automatically uploaded to print-on-demand services and the resulting volume is added to the Library of Nonhuman Books. This reading machine is mainly used to create new poems. Through all of these multiple poems there are a lot of white spaces and Mallarmé considered these white spaces to be integral parts of the poem, “water around continents,” something that makes the form more apparent. Not only are poems the only available context in these chips. Like Mallarmé, Carrión explains “A book is a sequence of spaces” (Borsuk, 147). 

“Each of these spaces is perceived at a different moment—a book is also a sequence of moments.
 • • •
A book is not a case of words, nor a bag of words, nor a bearer of words.”
—Ulises Carrión, “The New Art of Making Books”

Through your “storytime” chip you can now scroll through the lens of our eye glasses to create your own and through AI or read the books that are provided on our shelf. 

Would you take this chance to change the future of books?  

Note: Personal point of view

I love reading books but not making my own. I remember when my dad read to me as a little girl. When we exhausted my bookshelf, he would make up his own stories. Eventually, he grew tired of maintaining hundreds of different narratives about a knight, princess, dragon, etc. girl. So he took me to the library, which opened up a new world of stories and changed my life. I remember as I grew  older, every few months, someone brought up the idea that with eBooks becoming more popular, libraries are quickly on their way to becoming obsolete. Publishers will stop printing books. The literary world as we know it will end. What these futurists forget is that libraries are the center of our culture. Libraries will always exist, in some form, because they are the center of our society—communities in and of themselves offering a breathing space for the old and the young, the tired and the energized, not to mention a safe place for weary moms and their kids to gather and enjoy. I look back to the simpler times when there were high stacks of books on the shelf, and it would break my neck back from looking up so high. I would be in awe of how many books the library carried. To the present day, it has become more common to bend my neck down where everything is now on my device.

I don’t mind, since it’s convenient and allows easy access. I honestly didn’t know what to write about, but since this is fictional, it shouldn’t be coming true. As so many authors of dystopian storytellers have warned us, I fear that this could become real. For example, I’ve seen news and articles about Elon Musk’s brain chip. “Neuralink” is Musk’s neural interface technology company. He’s developing a device that would be embedded in a person’s brain, recording brain activity and potentially stimulating it. Musk has compared the technology to a “FitBit in your skull.”

I can see it happening for people who want to find out early on in their life about diseases and be able to cure them quicker. When I wrote about this fictional story of “Mind Chip,” it was from the article about Elon Musk. I just took it to another level, as if we were turning into robots. If we had something so small implanted into our bodies, there would be no point in jobs and careers in life because everyone “could” have access to it. And the government would be the one who implanted those chips into your brain, neck, or arm if it was a world of mind control. Okay, I’m just making this more complicated. Overall, I hope that this world won’t have to come to that. To be more realistic, I think books won’t ultimately come to an end, as I mentioned at the beginning of my notes. Books are the center of our society. 

Works Cited:

Borsuk, Amaranth. The Book (the MIT Press Essential Knowledge Series). Illustrated, The MIT Press, 2018.

“Elon Musk’s Brain Chip Firm Neuralink Lines up Clinical Trials in Humans.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 20 Jan. 2022, www.theguardian.com/technology/2022/jan/20/elon-musk-brain-chip-firm-neuralink-lines-up-clinical-trials-in-humans.

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Post-Artifact Systems

“The future book — the digital book — is no longer an immutable brick. It’s ethereal and networked, emerging publicly in fits and starts. An artifact ‘complete’ for only the briefest of moments. Shifting deliberately. Layered with our shared marginalia. And demanding engagement with the promise of community implicit in its form.”

Book lovers fear the end of the texture of paper, the sound of flipping pages, and the excitement of cracking open a new book. “It’s not going to be the same anymore.”

Growing up with technology would have never been the same as picking up a book. Reflecting on my own experiences, it started out with only using school computers for education such as looking on Wikipedia.

Mod explains “take a set of encyclopedias and ask, “How do I make digital? You get a Microsoft Encarta CD. Take the philosophy of encyclopedia-making and ask, “How does digital change our engagement with this?” You get Wikipedia.

Like much of the essay the driving point is that digital becomes powerful when it is not shoehorned into analog conception of artifacts. A book is a book (a newspaper a newspaper) because that was what the technology used to best allow for. With new technology we will redefine our artifacts of information.

“The book of the past reveals its individual experience uniquely. The book of the future reveals our collective experience uniquely.”

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The Future of Digital Publishing

“Everything in the world exists in order to end up as a book.”

—Stéphane Mallarmé, “The Book, Spiritual Instrument”

When media opened, it shaped our experiences of both time and space. It has coordinated through media from painting to writing to film within our daily life. Digital technological innovations and changes have created favorable circumstances for digital publishing improvement, such as the possibility of diversifying content streams and revenue sources. 

For example, podcasts. Podcast took the world of the news by storm. More than half (51 percent) of the U.S. population has already listened to a podcast and this tendency will continue to grow. Podcasts has provided a unique vessel for news coverage. It can take the form of an ensemble-led talk show, a story, a magazine, or simply a conversation between two people. As more people and events happen in this world, stories are being told on a variety of platforms.

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Favorite Book

You’ve Reached Sam by Dustin Thao 


“A heartfelt novel about love and loss and what it means to say goodbye”

“Seventeen-year-old Julie Clarke has her future all planned out—move out of her small town with her boyfriend, Sam; attend college in the city; spend a summer in Japan. But then Sam dies. And everything changes.

Heartbroken, Julie skips his funeral, throws out his belongings, and tries everything to forget him. But a message Sam left behind in her yearbook forces memories to return. Desperate to hear him one more time, Julie calls Sam’s cell phone just to listen to his voice mail recording. And Sam picks up the phone.

The connection is temporary. But hearing Sam’s voice makes Julie fall for him all over again, and, with each call, it becomes harder to let him go.”

“What would you do if you had a second chance at goodbye?” 

Perfect for: Readers who love to cry and feel pain; readers who love emotional stories about love; readers looking for a story that depicts grief.

I’m a lover of eye catching books before I read a book, of course there’s the saying “never judged a book by its cover.” But sometimes I can’t help it. I constantly kept on seeing this book on my ‘for you’ page and finally I caved in and bought it. Not only is the cover of this book so beautiful, the story of it made me fall in love with this book even more.

(This book has broken me in the most beautiful way and the last voicemail still haunts me)

You’ve Reached Sam is a story that confronts grief in its most intense and most painful, its tender and genuine portrayal of love in its most pure form was also unexpectedly healing. One of my greatest and most intense fears is losing someone, I love. And then you have You’ve Reached Sam, which is that fear in book form. I think a beautiful part of this book is that there really isn’t an explanation as to how Julie and Sam are connected; it’s not about the how, but about the why. The impossible connection blurs fantasy and reality, underpinning their close and intense bond and therefore offers a great device that explores the complexities of grief and letting go.


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Hi there~~

Hello! My name is Hanh~I don’t know much about blogging but I am excited to learn more about it with ya’ll this semester 🙂 nice to meet you

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