Why We Expect More From Technology and Less From Each OtherBook - 2011
In "Alone Together," MIT technology and society professor Sherry Turkle explores the power of our new tools and toys to dramatically alter our social lives. It's a nuanced exploration of what we are looking for--and sacrificing--in a world of electronic companions and social networking tools, and an argument that, despite the hand-waving of today's self-described prophets of the future, it will be the next generation who will chart the path between isolation and connectivity.
Technology has become the architect of our intimacies. Online, we fall prey to the illusion of companionship, gathering thousands of Twitter and Facebook friends, and confusing tweets and wall posts with authentic communication. But this relentless connection leads to a deep solitude. MIT professor Sherry Turkle argues that as technology ramps up, our emotional lives ramp down. Based on hundreds of interviews and with a new introduction taking us to the present day, Alone Together describes changing, unsettling relationships between friends, lovers, and families.
In this final volume in a trilogy of works on computers and people that includes The Second Self and Life on the Screen, Turkle (social studies of science, M.I.T.), presents an important exploration of the psychological effects of computers on decision making and relationship building in a culture increasingly filled with technology dependence and social networking. Based on fifteen years of research and numerous interviews with adults and children, the work explores the development of new types of relationships among families and peer groups that are moderated by technology, the quality and psychological health of these relationships and a growing reaction to, and rejection of, this new cultural norm. This is a paperbound reprint of the 2011 clothbound edition. Annotation ©2012 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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From interview of Turkle in the Globe and Mail Feb 4 2011:
"We need to celebrate these technologies but if they're interfering with our ability to have dinner with our families, no. I literally went to two funerals - what's with the texting at funerals? Take a moment. This is a life. This isn't about manners - this isn't about my wagging a finger like some kind of Dear Abby of the Internet age. This is about losing our sense of what we're supposed to do for each other."
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