Milton Glaser on technology

Over a year ago now I wrote my dissertation on the Future of the Printed book. I was reading an old copy of It’s Nice That 3 (April 2010) yesterday and found this great piece from an interview with Milton Glaser about the future of print.

With the wealth of knowledge from setting up New York Magazine, does it make you sad to see print magazines struggling as much as they are?
MG: It does make me sad. But then again, that’s the sadness of the elderly leaving this world that they became accustomed to. I love print, and I love the experience of making things for reproduction and holding them and being able to see them without the veil of electronic fragments. It was also an interesting process to have people come together in a room, talk about ideas, and then see those ideas translated into a physical thing on a weekly basis. Working on a weekly is wonderful. Anyone who has done magazine work under pressure realises that it brings out the best in people, a real community. And through difficulty develops a range of skills that the electronic media basically does not demand of people….On the other hand there’s nothing to worry about. It’s happened, it’s here, it’s over. Now there will be a new idea of aesthetics, beauty, truth and everything else because that’s what technology does.

So we’re entering exciting rather than depressing times in terms of publishing? It’s interesting to hear someone be positive about print with new technologies at the forefront of our minds.
MG: The lesson of history is that all technology changes culture, so what are you going to complain about? When oil painting was introduced the nature of painting changed and you couldn’t exactly determine how it would change, but the difference between painting a fresco on a wall and painting a painting that could be moved and framed is profound. All of these things have consequences that are not understood until it’s too late.

Quote taken from It’s Nice That 3