[iDC] iDC Digest, Vol 39, Issue 9

Timothy Murray tcm1 at cornell.edu
Fri Jan 4 16:43:03 UTC 2008

Thanks, Alexis.

>On the contrary,  I am suggesting that investment be made to permit 
>broader establishment of experimental media centers in and by local 
>communities.   Unless I am misreading Patrick, I believe that he 
>emphasizes (re)Engineering as what could be the positive impact on 
>Engineering paradigms were they more informed by or in tune with 
>local concerns articulated by local communities whose increased 
>access to new media would permit a broader international 
>understanding of "their" concerns and positions.  This is what I 
>meant by " local assessments of pratical computing needs."

Nor do I suggest that solid learning models and appropriate social 
life don't exist in "these communities."  But, rather, that instead 
of simply handing around computers,  strategic "Western" expenditures 
for the multimedia future might be bettter planned in dialogue with 
local communities for a better understanding of the differences that 
constitute the global community.  I should add that I don't mean to 
argue that Negroponte has not investigated this; I am simply 
recommending it as a strategy or complement to his initiative.

I regret if you heard strains of anti-imperialist rhetoric in my post.


>Message: 2
>Date: Fri, 4 Jan 2008 15:39:15 +0000 (UTC)
>From: Alexis Turner <subbies at redheadedstepchild.org>
>Subject: Re: [iDC] One Laptop Per Child - MIT/Negroponte Initiative
>To: Timothy Murray <tcm1 at cornell.edu>
>Cc: idc at mailman.thing.net
>Message-ID: <Pine.NEB.4.64.0801041501440.24437 at sdf.lonestar.org>
>Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII
>Please correct me if I have misunderstood your message.  What you are
>recommending is that we go into communities and tell them what they need to
>learn instead of letting them define that themselves?  This is how I read "the
>starting point should be what Patrick calls solid learning models and Social
>I mean, given that you have defined that as a *starting* point, I am 
>taking that
>to mean your underlying assumption is that solid learning models and 
>social life do not already exist in these places and so any outside initiative
>must first concern itself with rectifying the bad learning models.
>Or, perhaps instead you are saying that the computer will be so alien that
>these communities will not be able to wrap their heads around what they should
>do with the computers and their current social lives and learning 
>models will be
>broken?  And that they will be too backwards to adopt an adequate response and
>so need our help to make sure they do it right?
>But I'll fess up.  I find Power Studies and anti-imperialist 
>rhetoric by people
>in power terribly trying and I don't read the literature as closely as I
>"should," which is why I am generally unnaturally quiet on this list.  So I am
>quite ignorant of what is probably obvious to most on here and no doubt you
>mean something far different than what I have read.

Timothy Murray
Professor of Comparative Literature and English
Curator, The Rose Goldsen Archive of New Media Art, Cornell Library
Director of Graduate Studies in Comparative Literature
Director of Graduate Studies in Film and Video
285 Goldwin Smith Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, New York 14853

More information about the iDC mailing list