Nicholas Lambert week 04: the medium and the message
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    Nicholas Lambert week 04: the medium and the message Nicholas Lambert week 04: the medium and the message Presentation Transcript

    • Marshall  McLuhan  (1911-­‐1980)Week  04:  The  Medium  And  The  Message
    • Brian  Eno’s  iPhone/iPad  apps:  soothing  music  for  children  too Ambient  touchscreen  apps
    • Brian  Eno:  pioneer  of Roy  AscoH:  developed  ideasambient  music  and  art about  interacJvity  andstudent  in  1964 feedback  in  the  visual  arts from  late  1950s Connec;ons  from  Eno  to  the  iPad
    • Toddler  using  iPad  -­‐  an  “early  adopter”?Surrounded  by  digital  media  from  birth?
    • Images  from  Alan  Kay’s  1968  paper  on  the  DynabookhHp://­‐alan-­‐kays-­‐dynabook-­‐to-­‐the-­‐apple-­‐ipad/  Computers  simple  enough  for  children
    • The  One  Laptop  Per  Child  project,  developed  by  Nicholas Negroponte  at  MIT  Media  Lab  from  2005.  Strong  input  from computer  language  and  interface  pioneer  Seymour  Papert  (1970s LOGO  turtle  on  the  right)Developing  a  computer  for  Third  World children:  the  OLPC
    • One area where the research is particularly strong is what is popularly known as multitasking. Plugged-in kids have gained a reputation for being masters at toggling between, say, a homework assignment and instant-messaging classmates, downloading music and texting on the cell phone, surfing the Internet while updating Facebook pages, and so on. A 2006 survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation1 found that middle and high school students spend an average of 6.5 hours a day hooked up to computers or otherwise using electronic devices, and more than a quarter of them are routinely using several types of media at once. It also found that when teens are “studying”Image from at the computer, two-thirds of the time they/30/culture-on-the-teen-brain/ are also doing something else. Development  of  the  brain  in  a technological  environment
    • One of the earliest and most noted studies in the field was conducted back in 1992 byneuroscientist Richard Haier at the University of California at Irvine, who looked at howfrequent sessions with the Tetris video game changed the players brains. The gamerequires players to fit colorful puzzle pieces together at a quickening pace as they fall fromthe top of the screen.Back then, Haier used brain scans to discover that some parts of the brain actually usedless glucose as the players became more skilled at the game. The "Tetris effect"illustrated how video-game training could make brains work more efficiently - an idea thateventually led to a whole host of brain-training games.From Possible  cogni;ve  benefits  of  gaming
    • Marshall McLuhan is perhaps one of the best known media theorists and critics of this era. A literary scholar from Canada, Marshall McLuhan became entrenched in American popular culture when he felt this was the only way to understand his students at the University of Wisconsin. [His] best known and most popular works [are] The Gutenberg Galaxy: the Making of Typographic Man (1962) and Understanding Media: the Extensions of Man (1964) […] McLuhans outspoken and often outrageous philosophies of the "electric media" roused a popular discourse about the mass media, society and culture. The pop culture mottoes "the medium is the message (and the massage)" and "the global village" are remnants of what is affectionately (and otherwise) known as McLuhanism. [From ]The  Medium  And  The  Message
    • "In a culture like ours, long accustomed to splitting and dividing all things as a means of control, it is sometimes a bit of a shock to be reminded that, in operational and practical fact, the medium is the message. This is merely to say that the personal and social consequences of any medium - that is, of any extension of ourselves - result from the new scale that is introduced into our affairs by each extension of ourselves, or by any new technology.” Marshall McLuhan, introduction to Understanding MediaUnderstanding  Media  (1964)
    • Many  people  presume  the  convenJonal meaning  for  "medium"  that  refers  to  the mass-­‐media  of  communicaJons  -­‐  radio, television,  the  press,  the  Internet.  And  most apply  our  convenJonal  understanding  of "message"  as  content  or  informaJon. Puang  the  two  together  allows  people  to jump  to  the  mistaken  conclusion  that, somehow,  the  channel  supersedes  the content  in  importance,  or  that  McLuhan  was saying  that  the  informaJon  content  should be  ignored  as  inconsequenJal.  Medium  And  The  Message
    • Whenever we create a new innovation - be it an invention or a new idea - many of its properties are fairly obvious to us. We generally know what it will nominally do, or at least what it is intended to do, and what it might replace. We often know what its advantages and disadvantages might be. But it is also often the case that, after a long period of time and experience with the new innovation, we look backward and realize that there were some effects of which we were entirely unaware at the outset. We sometimes call these effects "unintended consequences," although "unanticipated consequences" might be a more accurate description. ge.htmInnova;on  and  its  consequences
    • McLuhan  tells  us  that  a  "message" is,  "the  change  of  scale  or  pace  or paHern"  that  a  new  invenJon  or innovaJon  "introduces  into human  affairs." Note  that  it  is  not  the  content  or use  of  the  innovaJon,  but  theMotorola  DynaTAC  8000TX,  first change  in  inter-­‐personal  dynamicscommercial  handheld  cellphone, that  the  innovaJon  brings  with  it.launched  in  1983  for  $3995  dollars  -­‐  its  inventor  Dr  MarJn  Cooper message.htm Innova;on  and  its  consequences
    • At the beginning of Understanding Media, [McLuhan] tells us that a medium is "any extension of ourselves." Classically, he suggests that a hammer extends our arm and that the wheel extends our legs and feet. Each enables us to do more than our bodies could do on their own. Similarly, the medium of language extends our thoughts from within our mind out to others. […he] always thought of a medium in the sense of a growing medium, like the fertileA  3D  snapshot  of  30%  of  the  Internet potting soil into which a seed is planted, orfrom  2005,  tracing  connecJons  and the agar in a Petri dish. In other words, amajor  sites. medium - this extension of our body orFrom senses or mind - is anything from which a change emerges. ssage.htm The  meaning  of  “medium”
    • "There is a basic principle that distinguishes a hot medium like radio from a cool one like the telephone, or a hot medium like the movie from a cool one like TV. A hot medium is one that extends one single sense in "high definition. High definition is the state of being well-filled with data. . . . Hot media are low in “Hot” participation, and cool media are high in participation or completion by the audience. . . . The hot form excludes, and the cool one includes.” [from Understanding Media] McLuhan associated "hot media" with specialized knowledge, industrial economies and individualistic societies, and "cool media" with oral traditions, agrarian cultures and tribal societies. Which is precisely how he arrived at the ironic idea that TV, though ostensibly an advanced technology, was also giving birth to a global village. He didnt mean that it was bringing us all closer together; he meant it was changing our urban, industrial Western society into a culture that reproduces the tribal “Cool” characteristics of a village on a global scale. From“Hot”  and  “Cool”  media
    • Where would the Internet fall on McLuhans temperature meter? It remains almost exclusively a medium that transmits and reproduces vast quantities of text at high speeds. McLuhan interpreted the evolution of writing from ideograms and stone tablets to alphabetic characters and print reproduction as a "hotting up" "to repeatable print intensity." By that standard, the Net is boiling. “Hot” On the other hand, its functional characteristics match those McLuhan identified as cool. Theres no question that the Internet is among the most participatory media ever invented, like the cool telephone. And its cultural patterns -- with its oral- tradition-style transmission of myth and its collective anarchy -- match those of McLuhans tribal global village. From 95.htmlThe  Internet:  “Hot”  or  “Cool”?