ADAM GREENFIELD EVERYWARE PDF

Shelves: science Published in , but I read this in The most interesting part of this book was to see how far technology has advanced in those 7 years. A very tech-heavy book, but a fascinating read, albeit a bit dated at this point. Apr 12, Weixiang rated it really liked it Concise, thematic, academic approach towards the study of ubiquitous computing.

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Excavating the meshwork Back around the turn of the millennium, one of the brightest lights in my own personal intellectual firmament was the philosopher Manuel De Landa. Briefly, for De Landa, hierarchies — which, rather unsurprisingly, he associated with Deleuzian trees and strata — ordered homogeneous elements in a command-and-control relation structured and imposed from the top, while meshworks, which he associated with the then-inescapable figure of the rhizome, connected unlike things in a distributed structure that could be articulated and therefore do work in the world without suppressing their difference.

But perhaps the most useful aspect of it is the insight that a meshwork is not the same thing as a network. At the time I first encountered De Landa, the figure of the network was still relatively novel, at least as a tool for thinking. The Californian ideology that has since become hegemonic was in its early ascendancy, and topological determinism was thick on the ground; it was an article of faith among initiates of this new way of thinking that restructuring the power relations of our lives along networked lines would lead to unprecedented, liberatory transformations in the ways information, knowledge and culture were produced.

The notion was abroad in the land that human communities organized as networks were inherently more conducive to equality and justice, as well as significantly more open to creative novelty, than implicitly coercive and privilege-conserving hierarchies. Both De Landa and his theory-papas Deleuze and Guattari had explicitly cautioned against falling for this vulgar topological reductionism, by the way, but evidently to no avail.

I mean, I certainly believed it, and reproduced it too, for quite a long time. They all spring from the same deeper well of formal signification.

Nature itself seemed to authorize our use of these horizontal logics. It turns out that when you go looking for networks, they crop up just about everywhere, making them a reasonable candidate for master organizing principle of the physical universe. But what is a network? De Landa tells us — here , anyway — that networks connect heterogeneous things. But this is in no way the case: in the real world, the networks that we consciously construct almost by definition connect elements that observe the same connection protocol or standard, whether that be rail gauge, or USB-C, or IEEE So it seems clear that if you want to describe a connective logic that links the activity of formally dissimilar elements, you need a better language.

And this is especially so when you consider how service-delivery infrastructure works in the cities most people on Earth actually live in. They arrive via some mixture of public and private provision, and these methods are stacked at variable scales in space and take varying rhythms and cadences in time. So water may get to you via some combination of buried pipes, trucks, municipal taps, bucket relays, and pallets stacked with tightly-shrinkwrapped plastic bottles not to mention falling from the sky , and any or all of those but the rain could be privatized.

You may get your electricity from the national grid on some days, on others from a little Honda generator you keep out back. For a sense of safety, you may knit together some combination of block watch, smartphone apps and protection payments to the local gang. Enter the meshwork.

What I want above all to recover from the De Landan use of this term is the possibility of describing more accurately the infrastructural and social assemblages we see in the real city — the kind of hybridized agglomerations of deeply bastard heritage, whose elements were laid down by many different hands, at different times, at different scales and degrees of completion.

If we can retrieve this valuable concept, dust it off and render it fit for purpose in the contemporary world, we might gain some theoretical purchase on circumstances that have hitherto eluded structured understanding. If my admittedly perverse little anarchist project is to reassemble in principle e.

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Excavating the meshwork Back around the turn of the millennium, one of the brightest lights in my own personal intellectual firmament was the philosopher Manuel De Landa. Briefly, for De Landa, hierarchies — which, rather unsurprisingly, he associated with Deleuzian trees and strata — ordered homogeneous elements in a command-and-control relation structured and imposed from the top, while meshworks, which he associated with the then-inescapable figure of the rhizome, connected unlike things in a distributed structure that could be articulated and therefore do work in the world without suppressing their difference. But perhaps the most useful aspect of it is the insight that a meshwork is not the same thing as a network. At the time I first encountered De Landa, the figure of the network was still relatively novel, at least as a tool for thinking.

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Every[ware] : la révolution de l'ubimedia

Although aspects of this vision have been called a variety of names—ubiquitous computing, pervasive computing, physical computing, tangible media, and so on—I think of each as a facet of one coherent paradigm of interaction that I call everyware. In everyware, all the information we now look to our phones or Web browsers to provide becomes accessible from just about anywhere, at any time, and is delivered in a manner appropriate to our location and context. In everyware, the garment, the room and the street become sites of processing and mediation. Household objects from shower stalls to coffee pots are reimagined as places where facts about the world can be gathered, considered, and acted upon. And all the familiar rituals of daily life, things as fundamental as the way we wake up in the morning, get to work, or shop for our groceries, are remade as an intricate dance of information about ourselves, the state of the external world, and the options available to us at any given moment.

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