Generic Infrastructures, part 2

N O E M A N e w s N. 359
25 March 2007

Generic Infrastructures [2]
Rob van Kranenburg

Today we are in the worst situation imaginable. Our global and
undisputed computing paradigm posits that computing processes are
successful only in as much as they disappear from view. Our design
focus is ever more following Philips untenable but seductive ‘sense
and simplicity’ resulting in the-bug-as-a-feature-design of the Ipod
Shuffle. Our educational system is following this systemic hide-
complexity strategy that favors the large industrial labs, IT
conglomerates and above all their clinging to notions of IP and the
patent that are firmy tied to their notions of doing business and
making money. And our users, us? We are YOU, the most influential
person of the year 2006, according to TIME Magazine. You fill the
Wikipedia entries in your spare time, you blog your daily activities,
you co-bookmark on de.l.i.c.i.o.u.s, upload your photos to flickr,
you buy mating gear in Second Life, and mark your position on Plazer
or Google Earth. You fill out the forms. Isn’t it time you start
questioning the principles behind the formats? And, to make matters
even worse, your naïve ideas of sharing are corrupting notions of
privacy, transparency and informational architecture symmetry.

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