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Me++: The Cyborg Self and the Networked City


Me++: The Cyborg Self and the Networked City Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

With Me++ the author of City of Bits and e-topia completes an informal trilogy examining the ramifications of information technology in everyday life. William Mitchell describes the transformation of wireless technology in the hundred years since Marconi — the scaling up of networks and the scaling down of the apparatus for transmission and reception. It is, he says, as if "Brobdingnag had been rebooted as Lilliput"; Marconi's massive mechanism of tower and kerosene engine has been replaced by a palm-size cellphone. If the operators of Marconi's invention can be seen as human appendages to an immobile machine, today's hand-held devices can be seen as extensions of the human body. This transformation has, in turn, changed our relationship with our surroundings and with each other. The cellphone calls from the collapsing World Trade Center towers and the hijacked jets on September 11 were testimony to the intensity of this new state of continuous electronic engagement.

Thus, Mitchell proposes, the "trial separation" of bits (the elementary unit of information) and atoms (the elementary unit of matter) is over. With increasing frequency, events in physical space reflect events in cyberspace, and vice versa; digital information can, for example, direct the movement of an aircraft or a robot arm. In Me++ Mitchell examines the effects of wireless linkage, global interconnection, miniaturization, and portability on our bodies, our clothing, our architecture, our cities, and our uses of space and time. Computer viruses, cascading power outages, terrorist infiltration of transportation networks, and cellphone conversations in the streets are symptoms of a dramatic new urban condition — that of ubiquitous, inescapable network interconnectivity. He argues that a world governed less and less by boundaries and more and more by connections requires us to reimagine and reconstruct our environment and to reconsider the ethical foundations of design, engineering, and planning practice.


How the transformation of wireless technology and the creation of an interconnected world are changing our environment and our lives.

About the Author

William J. Mitchell was the Alexander W. Dreyfoos, Jr., Professor of Architecture and Media Arts and Sciences and directed the Smart Cities research group at MIT's Media Lab.

Product Details

The Cyborg Self and the Networked City
Mitchell, William J.
Mitchell, William J.
The MIT Press
Social aspects
Social Aspects - General
General Architecture
Computers Reference-Social Aspects
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
from 17
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

Computers and Internet » Computers Reference » General
Computers and Internet » Computers Reference » Social Aspects » General
Computers and Internet » Computers Reference » Social Aspects » Human and Computer Interaction
Computers and Internet » Internet » General
Engineering » Engineering » History
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Humanities » Philosophy » General
Science and Mathematics » Environmental Studies » General
Science and Mathematics » Popular Science » Computer Science

Me++: The Cyborg Self and the Networked City New Trade Paper
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Product details 269 pages MIT Press - English 9780262633130 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , How the transformation of wireless technology and the creation of an interconnected world are changing our environment and our lives.
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