luciano petullà

systems and dimensions of new communication

On sectorial crisis and law pitfalls Although we used to think that it’s better to project small business in a big picture, we often suffer the lack or availability of appropriate analysis. Absorbed by tasks, weak in forces or distracted by hyper-activism of a interested counter-information, we remain in the wake of mainstream thoughts, anchored to biased and insufficient ideas to support/contest actions and decisions can limit our media agency. Indeed, after the great adoption of internet services, many policy-makers – directly or indirectly moved by sectoral complaints – asked us to take position against media piracy and practices that are destroying value and jobs in cultural industry. Even I prefer to write in a long form into my suchlike blog, I would have a hard task to face the whole arguments that these questions require to gain a clear view – thematic range usually starts with economy, touches law and inevitably arrives to democracy. When I tried to develop a thought it takes many pages, the space needed to check aspects, principles and points of view raised by changes electronic technologies introduced since 1980s in legislation, business and uses around media. Yet past experiences left the desire to return…

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Questions about clouds Since XX century ICTs demonstrated to be able to spring changes in almost every sectors of society. Meanwhile, we have had a quite imprecise ideas about resources and tools enforcing their power, a fact that helps the rise of a mythological aura around them. On the other side, we were increasingly involved by these machines even only as simple users. Indeed, ICTs involved mass-users only with the internet of 2000s, both infiltrating their tools and languages into common life and requiring some technical alphabetisation. More precisely, the democratisation of computers in terms of real availability and ability to friendly manage and program began for an increasing group of people in the 80s. They started a process that spreads ICT knowledge/resourses and their subtraction to public and private monopolies. The diffusion of personal computers resulted an indispensable prerequisite for what we now define “software culture”. Initially developed as mere platform of data elaboration, networked personal computers became parts of a communicative territory of proposal, elaboration and aggregation of individual and group projects where hw/sw procedures/materials combine continuously each other to feed new forms of languages and cultures. As the lawyer and economist Yochai Benkler well explained, technological and…

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The “tyranny” of contents and processes of concentration As the place of premise, first lines can contain  some acknowledgements about the extraordinary meaning that the Net has for a relevant part of worldwide people, namely a treasure of great cultural and intellectual vivacity, of incommensurable usefulness, expressivities and intelligence. But, after this admission, we have to do some reflections on how this whole of contents is physically supported and how network structures are shaping to respond in a sustainable way  with respect to its evolutions.  Given the numerous factors involving into the process and their “environmental” dynamics (in internet actions  acquire exponential speed), it is never easy to underline the right trends, above all from a quantitative point of view.  We can individuate many signals about certain processes of consolidation and  a passage to a “2.0” phase more focused on Services as a Software, with  utilities covering an extended range including entertainment  for leisure time and business tools for labour market, products landing immediately (from a cloud computing) on a mobile/fixed hyper-connected user. But which kind of reshaping are physical infrastructures and  their managing business companies  involving in? What is the new state of art of “core” internet? We try…

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Strategies of fitness according to a study supported by MacArthur Foundation If we should indicate an electronic device that, other than cellular phone, has a great chance to be carried inside westernised people’s pockets,  we would not be wrong answering a small usb-device.  Diffusion and adoption of pen-drivers and sophisticated audio/video players to maintain and transport programs/files or the loved personal playlists due to the amazing developments of microelectronic and the success of usb standard interface. The plug-socket system named  Universal Serial Bus seems  to be maintain the promise hailed by its name becouse, in its normal or mini version, it is present upon almost all electronic devices wanting to ease digital interconnection in a prompt “plug ‘n play” logic. In this way, data and programs utilised in diverse activities and circles – products and sources of personal projects – glue themselves with the other our whole of  intelligence and sensibility tying us with hardware and software of computerized machines distributed in our vital environments. Usb as metaphor Indeed, usb system is becoming the metaphor to indicate the growing ibridation  among universe we considered (and sometimes were) separated. The images here reported, for example, are part respectively of  a book…

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The unavoidable re-generation of idea of human The nature of each form of delegation involves the creation of a distance between expectation of originating will and the outcomes achieved by delegate that, people or systems, can otherwise mark characteristically the effective phase through their own skills or lacks. Generally, delegating to someone or something the control or fulfilment of will, actions or plans is a way of thinking and doing typical of people live in complex and large societies. As described by many sociologists (for example Anthony Giddens) people need to establish trusted links with a large number of “expert systems” to be able to live and make their activities. On the other side, that is part of a precise strategy defined “reduction of complexity” characterizing environment of biological and social life (Nicklas Luhmann). Yet, in our time there is a matter that seems completely irreducible to a more simplistic affair, up to refuse a normative way to fix a delegation if it doesn’t contain a mechanism that can anticipate the ungovernable impasses, finally resolving them respecting the originating will. This form of resistance is perfectly legitimate. In effect, the matter regards the very concept of life and its condition…

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ICTs adoption in emerging societies and its social, cultural and economical impacts Years passed since we reasoned about possibilities to arrange a peculiar field of study for the telephone. Meantime, it has been written very much on topic, and many scholars added the group, focusing both general aspects and specific ones with essays that did not quite neglect anything, and the “quite” saves us from any next surprise. In effect, if we would find an analogy to describe some phenomenon related to new media, and we want to be understood, we do never remain delude focusing on telephonic area. Surprisingly, the practice doesn’t work only in a way – recovering and evidencing through telephone what has just happened or experienced – but also in a projectile phase, namely following this medium as propellant for the development and re-configuration of basic social processes, whose complex societies of various Western cultures tend to lose cognitive sensibilities. As usual, we speak of digital divide and social mobility through some recent readings. In this particular case we’ll use a dense handbook containing many essays on mobile communication by worldwide researchers. The book Handbook of Mobile Communication Studies (2008), edited by James E. Katz, an…

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Web 2.0 and the spirit of amateur technical culture The evolution of actual ICT platforms toward a user interaction binding user-friendliness with increasingly capability in the creation, managing and sharing of contents regarding innumerable activities is normally indicated with the term web 2.0.  This definition – coined following the typical stylish software upgrading – describes the second new wave of internet technologies. These applications, differently from previous software ones developed during first web phase (1995-2005), exalt in a better way the dynamical, open, relational and distributed nature of network, helping people and groups to enter in digital spaces with their specific expressions, organizing new structures regardless borders between labour and leisure time and according them to our common social logics following peculiar interests and/or the desire of relationships. The exemption of technical work The phenomenon of social network, characterized by new forms of cybersocial aggregation, involves by now hundreds of millions of people worldwide, revealing itself as an increasingly success story. The internet sites proposing such kind of activities have a strong appeal because of their free offer of tools and resources, consenting people to immediately operate and easily prepare their specific materials in a “self-service” modality, linking and sharing…

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The history of media and the listening of time On March 2008, at the annual conference of the Association for Recorded Sound Collections at Stanford University in Palo Alto, Calif., it has been presented the first audio recording of human history. The news is that 10-second song was recorded on April the 9th of 1860 by Édouard-Léon Scott de Martinville, a Parisian typesetter. The Frenchman would have anticipated  Thomas Alva Edison, well-known as the first inventor of gramophone, recording “Au clair de la lune” 17 years before Edison received a patent for the phonograph and 28 years before an Edison associate captured a snippet of a Handel oratorio on a wax cylinder. To be clear, American researchers have captured the labile signs of song, impressed onto sheets of paper blackened by smoke from an oil lamp, and reversed them by a sophisticated techniques on a new support. First audio recording (1860) listen Although  the discovery seems to start a dispute like that on telephone between Meucci and Bell – in effect, Scott died convinced that Edison has rubbed his idea and, as sometime Frenchmen used to do against Anglo-American people,   claimed with nationalistic accents  his reasons – in this case…

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Daniel J. Levitin explains what sound tells of us Music has indubitably a special place among arts being a loyal companion of human beings: in the history we know there is not culture that was able to renounce it. As American science cognitive researcher Daniel J. Levitin says, where human beings stay together there is music: weddings, funerals, degree party, war marches, sport events, urban nights, prayers, romantic dinners, baby cradle, study, etc. Above all, music is part of ordinary life in the city and in the country, and diffusion and modalities of its consumption have reached incredible levels through the musical players of electronic era, eventually dissolved into the software and hardware of digital devices. This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession is a book explaining the appeal of music just starting from the Levitin’s peculiar love for all its forms, a passion that addressed him among diverse but original and convergent interests, all merged into an experience and career in which circularity among entertainment, knowledge, work, study, research, innovation and desire of communication comes in evidence. The author, scholar and scientific popularizer, combines admirably severe studies –  computer science, human-computer interaction, psychology, anthropology,…

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Introduction American company Apple, producer of computers and personal devices – among others, the famous mp3-player iPod – has entered into mobile business with a video cell phone that has been presented and hailed worldwide with a great emphasis. In this paper we’ll take iPhone as a fresh case study to update some paths used to study video cell phone (Borrelli, Petullà 2007). It is a phenomenon particularly suited because of its success, that can be understood only at the light of a context including the logic of its technical development and aesthetical aspects, and so inevitably experiential ones, justifying a fully sociological and cultural approach to media study. Although the great number of interesting cues, we will try to focus our attention on contiguous topics with our previous analysis, using it as interpretative frame. The iPhone has been presented in US on January 2007 becoming commercially available on June the 29th. Both events have received an enormous attention from international media; they have dedicated much time to illustrate its characteristics as well as folkloristic aspects marked by feverish waits of early adopters, that formed long queues to buy an expensive phone (at least 500/600 dollars for the early versions)…

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