National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) reports on the the access to and use of technology in America

October 1, 2009

Because many of you are interested in issues of culture + technology + access and touched on the earlier NTIA reports discussed in the Technicolor collection, I thought I’d post later reports. Notice the rhetoric shift from the titles of the earlier reports (The Digital Divide) to these later reports (A Nation Online). Is there enough evidence for this shift? Check them out and decide for yourself:

2004 report, A Nation Online: Entering the Broadband Age: http://www.ntia.doc.gov/reports/anol/index.html

2002 report, A Nation Online: How Americans Are Expanding Their Use Of The Internet: http://www.ntia.doc.gov/ntiahome/dn/nationonline_020502.htm

Nelson, Alondra, Thuy Linh N. Tu, and Alicia Headlam Hines. (Eds.). (2001). Technicolor: Race, technology, and everyday life. NY: New York University Press.


Daily Show report on (and parody of) Globalization/Localization Information Transfers

September 30, 2009

Check out this humorous and subversive spin on the hegemonic notions of technological/technical relationship(s) between India and the U.S.⇒”Deep Space Naan” (aired on 9/29/09). “Aasif Mandvi is proud to report that India discovered water on the moon, while America provided the tech support”: http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-september-29-2009/deep-space-naan


Localization practices?

September 27, 2009

So what do you think about these localization practices of these global corporations?

“Microsoft Apologizes for Racially Charged Image Alteration: http://www.pcworld.com/article/170820/microsoft_apologizes_for_racially_charged_image_alteration.html

The Localization of McDonald’s web presence: http://www.aboutmcdonalds.com/mcd/select_your_country_market.html

Do you notice the different strategies that McDonald’s uses to localize its website for the German market (http://www.mcdonalds.de/) vs. Guatemala (http://www.mcdonalds.com.gt/) vs. “Asian Pacific American Culture” (http://www.myinspirasian.com/)? The differences in visual rhetorics and linguistic interfaces alone are astounding!

So what do you think of these localization practices?


Week 6 Discussion Map

September 25, 2009


These were some of the terms we discussed in Week 6 to talk through the tensions between localization and globalization in the contexts of information and technology transfers in cultural contexts.This week we read globalization and localization of technologies and information in cultural contexts via the course readings for the week Michel de Certeau (1984), Slack & Wise (Globalization chapter, 2005), Huatong Sun (2006), and Barry Thatcher (2000).

This map was built with Wordle.


Week 5: Culture + Technology + Identity

September 18, 2009

For this week, we read most of Slack & Wise’s Culture + Technology and talked about Western paradigms of progress, convenience, and control, as they pertain to our understandings of technology and who we consider technologically literate and/or advanced. Further, this work helped us to think through technologies and our relationships to them as rhetorical and technological assemblages and articulations. Through a cultural studies and actor-network approach, Slack & Wise help us to imagine broader definitions of technology and to think about technology as more historically and culturally that contemporary fixations on new media tend to do. For example, they historicize how certain technologies have been unequally delegated and prescribed along gender, ethnic, class, and ability lines. Further, they interrogate how technologies prescribe identities and standards of beauty.

This work reminds me of the important work of Christina Haas and her evidence that we need to further consider the relationships between old(er) and new(er) media–and what we can learn from older media to imagine more useful and usable technologies, workplaces, etc. in the future.

Ironically enough, last week I saw an interesting ad for Post Shredded Wheat cereal that critiques progress for progress sake and argues that they are not succumbing to the pressure. I searched for the ad online and found the video of it. I found the discussion/controversy that ensues below the video compelling. Check it out: http://adweek.blogs.com/adfreak/2009/05/post-shredded-wheat-is-not-fond-of-progress.html

Haas, Christina. (1999). On the Relationship Between Old and New Technologies. Computers & Composition, 16(2), 209-228.
Slack, Jennifer Daryl & J. Macgregor Wise. (2005). Culture + technology: A primer. New York: Peter Lang Publishing.


Week 4 Discussion Map

September 10, 2009


These were some of the terms we discussed in Week 4 so that we might think through the rhetoric of post-race and whiteness theory. This map was built with Wordle.


Week 4 Discussion

September 8, 2009

Check out Bryon’s WCR for Week 4 (in comment below) as a preview to his presentation and as fodder for class discussion.