Keis0s2 Is Stages 2008


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"Knowledge economy and Information society" course seminar 2 2008

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Keis0s2 Is Stages 2008

  1. 1. “ All the World’s a Stage” Ian Miles – Manchester Institute of Innovation Research MBS - University of Manchester Knowledge Economy and Information Society 2 – Information Society Evolution
  2. 2. Course material should be available on webct – but in the meantime go to http://
  3. 3. This seminar: <ul><li>Sociotechnical approach to Information Society </li></ul><ul><li>Technological Revolutions </li></ul><ul><li>Stages of Information Society? </li></ul><ul><li>Information Systems Evolution – stages and strategies? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Understanding Information Society <ul><li>All economic sectors (and all human activities) involve producing and processing information; and many also require sharing and storing it. </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge about information production and processing has accumulated and evolved. Historically there have been major new methods (e.g. writing and arithmetic; abacus and printing; telegraphy and telephony, analogue photography and phonography; radio and TV…) with significant implications for socioeconomic organisation. </li></ul><ul><li>New IT - electricity  electronics  microelectronics , new devices and ideas like software, dataware (e-content), interactivity, etc. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Sociotechnical Approach to Information Society <ul><li>New IT - electricity  electronics  microelectronics , new devices and ideas like software, dataware (e-content), interactivity, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Scope for application of New Information and Communication Technologies ( business processes ), new forms of traded information, new communications services ( products ) </li></ul><ul><li>Potential for change in role and style of information processing in all sectors and in many noneconomic activities ... </li></ul> CHRIS FREEMAN’s classes of Innovation: Incremental ------ Radical ------------ Revolutionary Local, minor change in product or process Substantial change usually based on new understanding Major and wide-ranging change based on breakthroughs of far-reaching significance
  6. 6. Revolutionary Technology <ul><li>Carlota Perez : see classic 1981 paper – </li></ul><ul><li> What makes an innovation revolutionary rather than incremental or radical? </li></ul><ul><li>It needs to be a new “key factor” with properties such as </li></ul><ul><li>Cheap enough to be widely used (clearly perceived low & descending relative cost) </li></ul><ul><li>Practically unlimited supply </li></ul><ul><li>Highly pervasive – i.e. provides widely-useful capability </li></ul><ul><li>Use is liable to reduce costs of capital, labour & products, & to change them qualitatively </li></ul><ul><li>Generally socially/politically acceptable </li></ul>
  7. 7. An IT Revolution? <ul><li>Dramatic & continuing: power increases (new capabilities), cost decreases </li></ul><ul><li>Widespread applicability (information & or information processing power) as factor of production </li></ul><ul><li>Effectively no resource limits (skills??) </li></ul><ul><li>Little social resistance (around generics - may be contention about specific uses) </li></ul><ul><li>ACTORS’ PERCEPTIONS - opportunities seized to produce new products and processes, new practices, calculus and “common sense” </li></ul>
  8. 8. A Sociotechnical Approach – Eras as related to Technological revolutions: <ul><li>New knowledge of effecting useful transformations  new practices </li></ul><ul><li>a new heartland technology – when new knowledge produces major improvement in capacity to effect pervasive transformations </li></ul><ul><li>This promotes dramatic change in availability of a core element of production </li></ul><ul><li>Meaning the use of new production equipment </li></ul><ul><li>Organised in new production processes changed logic of production </li></ul><ul><li>With new products for industrial and consumer use (and often in a leading role – military and other public sector use) </li></ul>
  9. 9. Opportunities are grasped … <ul><li>Innovation in and around new IT </li></ul><ul><li>New processes of production, new products Labour, Capital, Knowledge inputs </li></ul><ul><li>Changed use of factors of production </li></ul><ul><li>Changes in organisational structure </li></ul><ul><li>Changed linkages between organisations </li></ul><ul><li>Changed consumption </li></ul>… leading to widespread change Not IMPACTS – strategies, counterstrategies, partial knowledge and visions
  10. 10. Technological revolutions - social phenomena, involving: <ul><li>New Sociotechnical Constituencies (Molina) </li></ul><ul><li>Government Action on Innovation and Diffusion </li></ul><ul><li>New processes, products: proliferating choice </li></ul><ul><li>New Firms, Industries, Linkages between industries </li></ul><ul><li>New skills, Management approaches </li></ul><ul><li>Rhetoric precedes systematic analysis of policy, ethical issues, & wider implications </li></ul><ul><li>Hype and mythology; Heroes and villains </li></ul><ul><li>Novel risks; Uncertainties about long-term performance </li></ul><ul><li>Lengthy learning processes </li></ul><ul><li>Platforms, standards, dominant designs: Closure of some choices </li></ul>
  11. 11. Sociotechnical Approach: <ul><li>Revolutionary technology: new capabilities – but actors have uneven access to knowledge and resources; they have cognitive constraints; and learning processes are important </li></ul><ul><li>There are real (but evolving) limits to functionality of artefacts and applicability of knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Constituencies need to be mobilised to develop and apply knowledge (sometimes against opposition) – it is not costless </li></ul><ul><li>Materiality of technology -> constrained ability to effect transformations in material world, constrained ability to invent effective technologies </li></ul><ul><li>Constraints in part cognitive, and learning processes important: but real limits to functionality of artefacts and applicability of knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Interplay of actors and their strategies generates development and application of knowledge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Unanticipated consequences; n ew actors, alliances, ways of acting </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Is Information Society evolving? <ul><li>Earlier phases of industrial capitalism have differed considerably over time and space - reflecting differences in culture, politics, technology </li></ul><ul><li>Information societies - a genre of industrial capitalism - are currently diverse </li></ul><ul><li>We can anticipate variation among information societies – despite globalisation, etc. ( But how much and on what dimensions? ) </li></ul>
  13. 13. Evolution of Computing: Moore’s Law etc. <ul><li>For example: </li></ul><ul><li>no. of transistors per unit, </li></ul><ul><li>no. of bits communicated, </li></ul><ul><li>no.of instructions processed per second </li></ul>Various measures of computer power Time  Envelope curve (systems of all types )
  14. 14. Evolution of Computing: Mark Weiser’s Overview source: Sales/Year Envelope curve (systems of all types ) MAINFRAME: one computer serves many people PC: one ----- computer per person UBIQUITY: --- many --------- computers per person
  15. 15. Information Society v1.0 - v4.0 Distant Local Mobile Ubiquitous 1960s/ 70s 1980s/ mid90s mid1990s/ 2000s 2010s?/?
  16. 16. Information Society v1.0 <ul><li>One computer to many users </li></ul><ul><li>“ Come here” </li></ul><ul><li>Expensive Systems requiring… </li></ul><ul><li>Expert Users using… </li></ul><ul><li>Crude Peripherals for… </li></ul><ul><li>Number-Crunching </li></ul><ul><li>Centralising influence </li></ul><ul><li>Policies:National Computer Industry Plans </li></ul>Information Technology (Mainframes) Distant Local Mobile Ubiquitous 1960s/ 70s 1980s/ mid90s mid1990s/ 2000s 2010s?/?
  17. 17. Information Society v2.0 Information Technology (PCs) Distant Local Mobile Ubiquitous 1960s/ 70s 1980s/ mid90s mid1990s/ 2000s 2010s?/? <ul><li>“ At your desk” </li></ul><ul><li>One to one/several </li></ul><ul><li>Stand alone systems </li></ul><ul><li>Challenge to DP centres </li></ul><ul><li>Powerful local processing: many applications </li></ul><ul><li>Moderate skills required, simplified interfaces (WIMP/GUIs) </li></ul><ul><li>Pervasive use by Professionals </li></ul><ul><li>Policies: IT and telecomms R&D programmes </li></ul>
  18. 18. Information Society v3.0 Information Technology (Notebooks, Web) Distant Local Mobile Ubiquitous 1960s/ 70s 1980s/ mid90s mid1990s/ 2000s 2010s?/? <ul><li>“ Reaching out” and “Getting around” </li></ul><ul><li>Several to one </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly </li></ul><ul><li>Cheap, Accessible </li></ul><ul><li>Portable </li></ul><ul><li>Simple Networking </li></ul><ul><li>Many devices with embedded IT </li></ul><ul><li>Policies: </li></ul><ul><li>Information Society, Superhighway </li></ul><ul><li>Dedicated/ multifunction </li></ul><ul><li>Delayering </li></ul>
  19. 19. Information Society v4.0 Information Technology (AmI) Distant Local Mobile Ubiquitous 1960s/ 70s 1980s/ mid90s mid1990s/ 2000s 2010s?/? <ul><li>“ Surrounding you”/ “Ambient” </li></ul><ul><li>Many to one </li></ul><ul><li>Disposable/ wearable/ “Invisible” </li></ul><ul><li>Pervasive Networking </li></ul><ul><li>Numerous interoperable devices, networks </li></ul><ul><li>Location, identification, monitoring, tagging </li></ul><ul><li>Organisation: Googleocracy? </li></ul><ul><li>Net governance? </li></ul><ul><li>Policies: Privacy? Security? </li></ul><ul><li>Data Protection ? </li></ul>
  20. 20. Four “phases” of Information Society Islands Archipelago Continent Ecosystem 1960s/70s 1980s/90s 1990s/2000s ?2010 Distant  Local  Mobile  Ubiquitous
  21. 21. Evolution of Information Society: Some Issues <ul><li>Great diversity across phases - some continuities, some vast differences – can we extrapolate, then? </li></ul><ul><li>Great diversity across countries (regions, social groups) - like earlier stages of industrial society - not solely result of policy choices. E.g. Minitel, mobile communications. </li></ul><ul><li>Great organisational diversity in use of available IT - just as with other technologies - not solely result of sectoral/size differences. E.g centralising/decentralising applications of IS. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Additional Powerpoints <ul><li>More detail on Moore’s Law etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Check out KEIS for background readings for next week, on IT and IS statistics. </li></ul>
  23. 23. End of Presentation (if there is not time for the remaining slides!)
  24. 24. Moore’s Law (original) Number of transistors on a chip – Gordon Moore (Intel) noted in 1965 that this was doubling every 18 months (these data – 2 years) This example from: Try a google/ google image search on “Moore’s Law”.
  25. 25. Moore’s Law (original) Number of transistors on a chip – Image from Wikipedia Try a google/ google image search on “Moore’s Law”.
  26. 26. Moore’s Law: Computer Power From a Scientific American article 1960 1970 1980 1990  Millions of Instructions per second (MIPS) 100 10 1.0 0.1 .01 Mainframe Minicompr PC Embedded
  27. 27. Moore’s Law (extended) Estimate of PROCESSING POWER (and cost) Kurzweil Image from Wikipedia “ Moore's Law of Integrated Circuits was not the first, but the fifth paradigm to provide accelerating price-performance. Computing devices have been consistently multiplying in power (per unit of time) from the mechanical calculating devices used in the 1890 U.S. Census, to Turing's relay-based &quot;Robinson&quot; machine that cracked the Nazi enigma code, to the CBS vacuum tube computer that predicted the election of Eisenhower, to the transistor-based machines used in the first space launches, to the integrated-circuit-based personal [computers]. “
  28. 28. Power increase, price decrease 1.6 years
  29. 29. Similar trends – sometimes even more rapid – for many other elements of IT Even Hard Disc Drives!
  30. 30. More attractive technology – cheaper, powerful: liable to be adopted
  31. 31. But is it a “Law”? <ul><li>People like to search for regularities – maybe they’re imputing trends where they don’t exist? </li></ul><ul><li>If the trends exist, even if not as rigid and predictable as commentators suggest, how can we understand them? </li></ul><ul><li>Giovanni Dosi ’s notion of technological trajectory (and paradigm) is useful here… </li></ul><ul><li>Expectations forged in communities of practice, used as benchmarks which competing firms/ researchers pursue. Expectations need to be realistic in terms of tools, techniques, costs, transformative potentials. </li></ul>
  32. 32. Law and Order <ul><li>Many other “laws” </li></ul><ul><li>People like to search for regularities – maybe they’re imputing trends where they don’t exist? </li></ul><ul><li>Look on the Web for the debates between Ray Kurzweil and Ilkka Tuomi: cf. Tuomi’s original paper “Life and Death of Moore’s Law” at </li></ul>
  33. 33. Tuomi’s Analysis <ul><li>Moore changed his formulation (doubling time from 12 to 18 months , and specific parameters from optimal to maximum complexity ) </li></ul><ul><li>People citing Moore continued to modify the formulation ( per square inch, “processing power” ) </li></ul><ul><li>Data bearing out the argument are often used in misleading ways (e.g. real doubling time?) </li></ul><ul><li>… doesn’t really diminish the case that there has been a remarkable accelerating long-run technological evolution, though… </li></ul><ul><li>There are many arguments suggesting that at some time soon the applicability of the Law will be reduced – difficulties of working with increasingly small scale. (But so far slow-down / halt has been resisted). </li></ul><ul><li>There are bottlenecks where progress has been slow (e.g. laptop batteries) </li></ul>