Technology

1649 BC’s undersea adventurers

Deep, Dark & Dangerous: The Story of British Columbia’s World-class Undersea Technology Industry by Vickie Jensen Madeira Park: Harbour Publishing, 2021 $36.95 / 9781550179200 Reviewed by Dave Flawse * In 1967, when a few cash-strapped Canadians towed their newly built manned-submersible from Vancouver to Washington State, biologists at the University of Washington got the chance…
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1621 Noise, heat, smoke, & smell

Out of the Fire: Metalworkers along the Salish Sea by Pirjo Raits. Photographs by Dale Roth and Michele Ramberg Victoria: Heritage House, 2022 $39.95 / 9781772033434 Reviewed by Theo Dombrowski * The cover image of a book entitled Out of the Fire might be expected to be aflame with oranges and red. Not this one: even…
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1609 Nuu-chah-nulth high bow canoes

Making a Chaputs: The Teachings and Responsibilities of a Canoe Maker by Joe Martin and Alan Hoover Victoria: Royal BC Museum Press, 2022 $24.95 / 9780772680273 Reviewed by Isabel Nanton * With a Pacific coastline that stretches 25,725 km (15,985 miles), British Columbia has for eons relied on water transport and for centuries First Nations’…
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1594 The celebrated camera obscura

Art, Research, Play: The Midnight Sun Camera Obscura Project by Donald Lawrence, Josephine Mills, and Emily Dundas Oke (editors), foreword by W.F. (Will) Garrett-Petts Lethbridge: University of Lethbridge Art Gallery, 2021 $39.95 / 9781927770115 Reviewed by Phyllis Reeve  * “This is a book that arrests attention but won’t stand still.” Thanks to W.F. Garrett-Petts for this assertion…
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1549 Clarifying climate policy

The Resistance Dilemma: Place-Based Movements and the Climate Crisis by George Hoberg Toronto: Penguin Random House Canada (The MIT Press), 2021 $54.00 / 9780262543088 Reviewed by Stephen Bocking * The climate crisis demands that we break our fossil fuel habit. This implies an energy revolution, rewiring society to rely on renewable electricity. New technologies can…
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1528 The cords that bind

Cordage from the Ozette Village Archaeological Site: A Technological, Functional and Comparative Study by Dale R. Croes with Darby C. Stapp (editor) and Victoria Boozer (publications assistant) Richland, WA: Journal of Northwest Anthropology (JONA) Memoir Number 21, May 2021 $24.99 (U.S.) / 9798504397573 Reviewed by Andrea Laforet * Ozette, a village on Cape Alava on…
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User experience & Sophocles

User experience & Sophocles by Thomas Girard * i. Ideas trapped within us We have ideas within us. They swim through our minds and sometimes move faster than we know what to do with them. A young guy approached me after the event last night and asked me what to do, with all of these…
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1392 A one-man freedom convoy

man@the_airport: How Social Media Saved My Life. One Syrian’s Story by Hassan Al Kontar New Westminster: Tidewater Press, 2021 $23.95 / 9781777010188 Reviewed by Daniel Gawthrop * Given the staggering human toll of the civil war in Syria since 2011 — half a million dead, more than six and a half million internally displaced, another…
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1348 Baffling thrums of reasoning

White Lie by Clint Burnham Vancouver: Anvil Press, 2021 $18.00 / 9781772141740 Reviewed by Peter Babiak * One of my favourite lines of literary theory is from the mystical German Jewish essayist, Walter Benjamin. A perspicacious man who recognized just how much literary works are indebted to the economic and technological conditions that form their…
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1341 An unsafe online world

Coding Democracy: How Hackers are Disrupting Power, Surveillance, and Authoritarianism by Maureen Webb, with a foreword by Cory Doctorow Toronto: Penguin Random House Canada (The MIT Press), 2021 $23.95  /  9780262542289 Reviewed by Ron Verzuh * An Unsafe Online World: What happens if do-evil computer nerds overrun do-good ones in the struggle to save democracy?…
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1323 Eavesdropping in the bush

Caught on the Trail: Nature’s Wildlife Selfies by Dale Bakken and Sandra Lynch-Bakken Surrey: Hancock House, 2020 $24.95 / 9780888390585 Reviewed by Jocie Brooks * A curious black bear nuzzles the camera on the cover of Caught on the Trail: Nature’s Wildlife Selfies. This book offers “up close and personal” views of BC’s wildlife that…
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1242 Architecture, investment, & greed

Icebergs, Zombies and the Ultra Thin: Architecture and Capitalism in the Twenty-First Century by Matthew Soules Hudson, NY: Princeton Architectural Press, 2021 $26.95 (U.S.) / 9781616899462 Reviewed by Theo Dombrowski * Everyone says many of the same things about real estate. “That view is worth a million dollars.” “If you want to make money, real…
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1116 Politics on a punch card

Cataloguing Culture: Legacies of Colonialism in Museum Documentation by Hannah Turner Vancouver: UBC Press, 2020 $32.95 / 9780774863933 Reviewed by Forrest Pass * On the desk of my home office, I keep a relic of museum cataloguing in days gone by: a McBee Keysort manual punch, model 5201-630. Resembling a standard hole punch, this tool…
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