On March 8th, I’ll be giving a guest lecture to the Critical Studies Colloquium at George Mason University. My talk will be titled, “Emerging Media, Acceleration, and Information Overload: A Media Archaeology Approach.” Here’s my brief description of the talk:
In the conclusion of my book, Mobile Interface Theory, I discuss the ideas of acceleration and information overload, pointing toward how we have experienced these effects every time a new medium emerges. I argue that the cultural imaginaries around cellphones and pervasive computing tend to simplify the complex ways we use these devices. These reactions also tend to lean toward nostalgia rather than historic tracings of our cultural reactions to emerging media. In this talk, I will discuss the history of information overload and how cellphones have been the latest medium to be accused of disconnecting us from the people and places immediately around us. I also look at issues of multitasking and will also discuss ways that these emerging media can foster a sense of depth and intimacy.