Wednesday, May 31

The perils of individualism

"If a goal of ethnomethodology is to get at how people make sense of things, how they structure relationships, how they order things, then it immediately has something in common with computing and communications. Both have only one variable: the individual. On the other hand, cultural and critical theories take collectives or assemblages, and the power relations between, as their subject matter. "

Interlude II

I never leave my house without my shuffle. In fact, I'd be damn happy if someone could make me a mobile phone that is as sturdy (i.e. droppable, even screen-free) and simple as that device. In any case, I've noticed that while I prefer randomised playlists for walking and travelling, I sit at my desk and do my best writing when I listen to full albums, in their recorded order. Every so often, I'll include in every post the album of the day, and a sample song that will be available for a couple of days. Enjoy.

Thursday, May 25


Not without a sense of humour, I do appreciate the irony of living an essentially sedentary life in order to write about mobility. But it's entirely unsustainable physically and emotionally.

So before I gain another twenty-five pounds, completely destroy my muscles and joints, and spend any more time in emotional turmoil, this week is all about me.

My skin. My head. My mind. My neck. My shoulders. My back. My arms. My wrists. My heart. My chest. My belly. My groin. My hips. My hips again. My thighs. My calves. My feet.

And laughing. Lots of laughing.

Tuesday, May 16

Design studies

Monday, May 15

Strategies and tactics

"Collaborations always already involve strategies and tactics, and sometimes all the players believe they won the game."

Sunday, May 14

Technological inevitablity

"Yet social and cultural researchers and artists described their work in relation to technological inevitability. In other words, all actions and collaborations were predicated on the understanding that technology would 'happen with or without them,' so better with them."

Saturday, May 13

Technological possibility

"The corporate researchers and academic technologists I spoke with most often described their work in terms of technological possibility, or a sort of cultural imperative to see what technology could do. It is during this 'pre-competitive' phase that collaborations with social and cultural researchers, as well as artists, were operationalised. I expected this would be the case because of the potential for future profit, but my observations and conversations indicated that it was not because there was something to be gained as much as there was nothing to be lost. This effectively meant that artists and social and cultural researchers were the collaborators who took on most of the risks."

Friday, May 12

Pre-competitive collaborations

"From a critical perspective, academic and artist collaborations with industry have greater potential during the pre-competitive phases of technological development--or as I was told in an interview, 'it's about making an impact before the commercial imperative won’t allow it'. The question, of course, is what kind of impact that can actually be."

Thursday, May 11

In-between spaces

"So while technologists and interaction designers have apparently committed to looking beyond purely cognitive or symbolic models--as well as seriously troubling the idea that technology is neutral--there remains a tendency to only superficially attend to the political and ethical dimensions of design, let alone broader social and cultural contexts. Similarly persistent, and not at all unrelated, is a privileging of the individual and the universal without acknowledging that the social and cultural actually fit somewhere in-between."

Tuesday, May 9

Dissertations are fun!

I'm so relieved to have found Jane McGonigal's The Best Sentence of the Day. Just when I was about to lose all hope, she's reminded me that no matter what the final form, dissertation writing can be fun. I really like the idea of turning a blog into a game where I get to pick my favourite writing of the day. I hope it'll keep me more positively focussed. And, maybe when all is said and done, it'll tell its own interesting story as well.

My final deadline is 2 August, 2006.

I'll be writing every day until then and posting bits and pieces here.