Book Title: ME++: the cyborg self and the networked city

Author:Williams John Mitchell

Year:2003

Publisher:THe Mit Press Cambridge, Massachusette London. England.


Summary,



Mitchell makes a detailed history to presend the change of human sense, body and mind with the development of the technology. The history explains how human become cyborg by introducing electronic device transformation and analyzing difference between the B.D.(Before Dematerialization) and A.D.(After Dematerialization).

Critics,



Unlike Haraway, Mitchell focuses on technology not politics to express the traits of cyborg. The transformation from human to cyborg is composed of the complicated reasons such as space, time, politics and material technology. For example, the wireless breaks down the person-to-places connectivity and change the space relations between person and institute. Wireless also reshapes the city geopgraphic space and citizen behavior. But he doesn't take the difference of the cities and culture into consideration and makes the technology history like an even revolution around the world.


Notes:



911. national security are fully dependent upon information technology.......Connectivity had become the defining characteristic of our twuenty-first-century urban condition-p10-11

Our habitats no longer consists of single or contiguous enclosures, but have become increasinly fragmented and dispersed. They are no longer bounded by walls but by the reach of our network-p16

The constants in my world are no longer provided by a contiguous home turf: increasingly, my sense of continuity and belonging derives from being electronically networked to thewidely scattered people and places I care about-p17

When phones migrate from walls and desktops to pocjets,they alwso move into the domain of fashion design and marketing- and their forms and styles, like those of clothing, proliferate endlessly. When you begin to wear them as emblems, rather than carry them as tools, they play a different cultural role.-p70

still smaller electronic parasites may be sewn to clothing like buttons, pinned on like badges, strapped on like watches, or directly attached (with or without body piercing) like finger rings, navel jewelry, and ear studs.-p77

One effect of this (in combination with the miniaturizationof electronics) is to compress storage......[a] second effect is to transform the character of information products...... a third effect of information dematerialization is to revolutionize logistics......And yet another effect-a particularly powerful one is combination with all of these- is to enhance the mobility of information producers and consumers-p83-84

In the B.D.(Before Dematerialization) era settlements were built around fixed, central sites of material accumulation - typically of excess storable agricultural produce such as grain......Thus, the great industrial cities of te second century B.D., such as Chicago, were shaped by their rail networks...... At the dawn of the A.D. (After Dematerialization) era, around Y2K in the cilder calendar system - yet another pattern emerged...... Servers and server farms embedded in high-speed telecommunication netwoeks became the crucial characteristic accumulation sites of new urban formation-p99-p100.

The more you deal in dematerialized goods, the less location and distance concern you. And the less visible are the relationships that really matter.-p101

By the time the dot-com bubble burst and splatter it was clear the physical space and cyberspace had actually become locked in an intricate, mutually transforming embrace, with functions shifting and dividing between the two in complex ways...... By the early 2000s, bits had returned from cyberspace. They had gone on location in the material world-p129

need no original, just a file-> any material, resolution->aura-p137

It is all very Platonic, in a way; digitally encoded ideas exists somewhere in cyberspace and physical artifacts are their imperfect, material realization-p142

Antonello da Messina's famous picture of Saint Jerome in his study shows how the attachment of atoms, in the most literal way, adds inertia to information. It depicts the scholar surrounded and encumbered by his heavyweight personal information environment; he pores over a manuscript on the inclined desk before him....... Dilbert wasn't so different. Like most office workers of the 1980s and 1990s, he occupied a cube containing a PC. His information environment was most digital than paper - some of it residing on his local disk, and some of it on distant servers. Although he did not need physical proximity to the servers, he still had to be near the delivery point.......But wireless connections and portable access devices create continuous fields of presence that may extend throughout building, outdoors, and into public space as well as private.-p143-144

wireless...... quickly began to break down the rigid person-to-place connections that had hitherto characterized campus life-p149

[F]or the cyborg, ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny. It is not that we have become posthuman in the wireless network era; since Neanderthal early-adopters first picked up sticks and stones, we have never been human.---p168

identity in multiple contexts-> Microsoft's Passport-p194-195

The new civic formations will be embedded in particular physical structures - as surely as the walled city of Athens, the concrete and steel cities of New York or London. or nation-states and empiresheld together by their transportation and utility infrastructures.They will have geographic shape, and will result from investments in specific places. But they will be spatially discontinuous, overlapping and intersecting, and messily asychronous in their patterns od daily activity. And they will be defined not by circles of warmth, not by surrounding stone fortifications, not even by the borders and boundaries drawn on today's political maps, but by the endless hum of electromagnetic vibrations.