Wednesday, September 29, 2010


All my blogs are now at I'm keeping this site for the Googlejuice.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

How IT Came to Rule the World

The series can be read in more detail at

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

How IT Came to Rule the World: Four Methodological Concerns

This is the fifth post in the mini-series How IT Came to Rule the World ©

Four methodological concerns that shaped this project are worth noting.

The first has to do with technology and its transformative relationship with society and institutions, in particular, the reciprocal effects between technology and power. The term “technostructuralist”, coined by Majid Tehranian, in his Technologies of Power (1989) is useful in that it referred to how information technology needed to be viewed within the context of institutions and power in general. Tehranian often compared this stance to a techno-neutralist position – the position that technologies are essentially neutral and their consequences are a result of human agency.

The second concern is the importance of using political economy to frame the general discussion. This includes classic issues like the price system, labor and corporations as well as the significance of peer production and gift economies. Economists like Karl Marx, John Maynard Keynes, Fredrick von Hayek, Milton Friedman, and Jeffery Sachs are also important as their ideas have been consequential in shaping the modern world.

The third is the relationship between information technologies and the production of meaning. Technologies are part of a set of practices that frame information and meaning. The spreadsheet, for example, combines the power of lists and tables with other calculative abilities that “in-form” meaning and organize sets of knowledge that run organizations and structure lives.

Lastly, an inquiry into the state of democracy in the age of IT dominance is important. Can IT contribute to a social structure that allows and empowers people to participate in the conditions of their lives?

How IT Came to Rule the World: Three Regimes

This is the fourth post in the mini-series on How IT Came to Rule the World ©

This project is organized to analyze and articulate three historical regimes that shaped the computer and telecommunications systems leading to the Internet and a proliferation of IT and digital media. Regimes are historically unique configurations of commercial, military and political power that carve out particular paths of social organization and technological development. To help articulate their dynamics, I have named them: containment capitalism, digital monetarism and global e-commerce and security. At times intentionally and at times inadvertently, each of these regimes contributed significantly to the development of IT, the Internet, and its World Wide Web of e-commerce and social media.

Over time, these regimes shaped an informational and technological environment that was sequentially dedicated to:

1) a military real-time hemispheric radar defense system to protect against a nuclear attack;

2) an international regime of capital decontrols, electronic money and financial news flows, and;

3) an electronic environment for social networking, surveillance, and global business to business (B2B), business to government (B2G), business to consumer (B2C), and consumer to consumer (C2C) transactions.

These three regimes at times overlapped, often conflicted, and frequently worked in conjunction with one another. However, the overall result was an unsteady yet unwavering trajectory towards a realization of computer codified information and calculative ability as well as the transformation of the telegraph and telephone system into a device for communicating digital information. It was a path with no sure outcome, no clear sense of its heading, but one that was disciplined by political and economic forces into slowly emerging national, then global, webs of digitalistic communications.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

How IT Came to Rule the World: Disciplining IT

This is the third post in the mini-series on How IT Came to Rule the World ©

While the focus here is primarily on the US and its role in developing data communications and computer technologies; IT has increasingly become global in its innovation, marketing, and production. The strength of the US “military-industrial complex,” the predominance of its currency and financial markets (as well as its capital markets that over funded its e-commerce capability and created the credit crisis of 2008), and the strategic role of its policy makers all contributed to the development of digital information technologies and a “disciplining” of the modern Internet. Consequently, these technologies are also involved in shaping modern American society, establishing new rules and protocols for daily life, and in the application and practice of power at the political level. Information and communications technologies have also been “permissive technologies” facilitating the movement of capital overseas, the management of off-shore production and research facilities, and the networks of global e-commerce and social media.

Friday, July 23, 2010

How IT Came to Rule the World: Regimes

This post was the second of my mini-series on How IT Came to Rule the World originally published at ©

The answer to the question of how information technology (IT) emerged is a complex one. A number of forces can be seen to have infused and shaped its development. The thesis in this project is that modern information technology developed out of the trajectory of US statecraft and its involvement in several political economy regimes which emerged successively and sometimes concurrently in the post-World War II period up and through the turn of the second millennium.

A regime refers to a system of political economy, including the reigning governmental and military power but also the dominant modes of distributing capital and producing goods and services. A regime is a structural alignment between political institutions, corporate and market forces, and the dynamics of human agency – the energy and talent of people working creatively and in collaboration within these structures.

Through relatively consecutive yet overlapping regimes, the system of computerization and telecommunications moved from military and space development, to commercialization, particularly for electronic finance, to the World Wide Web’s e-commerce and social media environment. As social media continues its phenomenal growth, it is on one hand a vehicle for personal empowerment and productivity; and on the other hand, part of an apparatus of surveillance and discipline.

How IT Came to Rule the World: Churchill and McLuhan

This post restarts my mini-series on How IT Came to Rule the World originally published at ©

0.1 One of Marshall McLuhan’s most celebrated intellectual “probes” was his paraphrase of Winston Churchill’s infamous “We shape our buildings, and afterwards our buildings shape us.” Churchill was addressing Parliament some two years after a devastating air raid by the Nazis that destroyed the House of Commons.[i] McLuhan reworded Churchill’s concern in the 1960s with a more topical “We shape our tools and thereafter our tools shape us.” Writing in a time when the electronic media was exploding in the American consciousness, McLuhan undertook a commitment to understand the role of media, particularly electronic media in modern society and his probe serves here as a point of departure for understanding the emergence of information technologies and simultaneously interrogating their impact as a force increasingly “ruling” the modern world, both in terms of cultural, economic, and political power as well as the preponderance of protocols and procedures ordering our digital world.

[i] “On the night of May 10, 1941, with one of the last bombs of the last serious raid, our House of Commons was destroyed by the violence of the enemy, and we have now to consider whether we should build it up again, and how, and when.” He continued with the above quote arguing for the Chamber’s restoration, citing its “form, convenience, and dignity.”

Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Television Will be Revolutionized

So really, what is TV in our day? How tied is it into our culture? Or better, how tied is our culture to TV? Does it define our social agenda? The discussions we have with friends? family? strangers? Do social networks now give us a "virtual watercooler" to talk up TV? How much is our daily mentality "cable assisted" as Bruce Sterling suggested?

Lotz argues that as our TV changes, our culture changes. Reaffirming the link between the two.

The Television Will be Revolutionized

Friday, June 25, 2010

Google TV Ads Automation

Here are some videos on Google's advertising systems for online, audio, and TV. What strikes me is the automated aspects of developing campaigns: determining locations, channels, and individual shows.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Television Will be Revolutionized

I'm currently reading Amanda Lotz's
The Television Will be Revolutionized right now as part of a class I'm teaching at NYU on New Technologies in Advertising and PR. Its a nice blend of political economy and humanities looking closely at the industry practices and the historical transitions as TV went through various transformations from its network heyday, through the changes brought on by cable television, the VCR, and the remote control, to what she suggests could be a "post-network era".

Saturday, May 22, 2010

A progressive agenda to rival the new deal - New York Times -

A progressive agenda to rival the new deal - New York Times -

It's hard to grasp the larger picture of the times when you are living in the midst of them. The Reagan revolution helped commercialize the fruits of the Cold War but gave the spoils to the already rich, setting off the age of inequality that culminated in the "Lost Decade" of regulatory incompetence, financial squandering, misguided adventurism, and the willful neglect of the needed transformation to a post-petroleum age. We can only hope that current president will right America's path and make the necessary preparations for a change to energy independence and a new age of economic fruitfulness.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

E-Commerce Sales Jump 14% in Q1

E-Commerce Sales Jump 14% in Q1

Interesting article on the growth of retail e-commerce sales in the U.S. which is has grown to $36.6 billion in the first quarter of 2010, according to estimates released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Navigating the Turbulent Waters of International E-Commerce

International e-commerce is poised for explosive growth in the months and years ahead. Demand for U.S. products overseas is booming due to vast selection, high-quality specialty goods and unbelievable values. The Internet is bringing all of this value, selection and convenience directly to consumers all over the world.

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Thursday, May 13, 2010

New Technologies for Advertising and PR

Teaching a new course this summer at NYU called New Technologies for Advertising and Public Relations.

New technologies are empowering customers, fragmenting media, and collecting massive amounts of data on consumer behaviors. People are spending less time with traditional venues such as newspapers, radio, and television and devoting more attention to digital media that are mobile, online, and televisual - such as high definition television, streaming movies, and digital gaming experiences. Classified ads and the 30 second spot are two advertising forms on the endangered list. Social Media has emerged as an overall communication framework which has challenged both the advertising and public relations model of one-way communication mediated through an agency. User participation through dialogue and content creation/sharing/syndication are producing a new set of expectations in the marketing mix. Media metrics have also developed an “informating” quality that tracks the connections and transactions of the link economy and compiles virtual profiles and identities.

This course examines state-of-the-art technologies instrumental in successful advertising and public relations. It reviews advertising and public relations through an economics and media analysis framework that establishes the value of advertising and examines the codes and meaning-creating practices used in effective advertising and public engagement strategies. The course will cover emerging technologies in design, interaction, and message creation. It will also examine techniques involved in computer imaging, digital videography, lighting effects, sound editing, and printing that enhance the media experience and make messages more effective.. Students will develop in-depth knowledge in an area of their choice that involves the latest techniques associated with new technologies such as online search, mobile smartphones, social media, or high definition digital television.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Do you have a digital media strategy?

Preparing for Digital Media Management II this Fall.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Deloitte: Top Trends for Media Industry in 2010

The text is small but this is an interesting report.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Old Or New? The Future Of Media?

Check out this Presentation:

Mobile Abilities Map

Check out this SlideShare Presentation:

Mobile advertising overview - by Asif Ali, CTO, Mobile-worx at Momo Chennai

Check out this SlideShare Presentation:

Learning The World Of Pay Per Click Advertising

Check out this SlideShare Presentation:

Online Advertising

Check out this SlideShare Presentation:

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Rob Pegoraro - FCC's plan for broadband Internet access falls short -

The FCC hopes to speed up and expand broadband access, which are both big problems: 35 percent of adult Americans lack high-speed Internet access at home, and those who do connect at slower speeds than residents of other countries. A 2009 study by the International Telecommunications Union ranked the United States 17th in adopting information and communication technologies.
Rob Pegoraro - FCC's plan for broadband Internet access falls short -
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Dose of Venom for Candidates Turns Ads Viral -

Remember Max Headroom?
Anyone who knows Ms. Whitman’s face — or the tangy lilt in her voice — would easily recognize her in this political attack advertisement. But the ad does not actually feature Ms. Whitman at all, but rather a technically impressive avatar of the candidate, talking trash about herself.
Dose of Venom for Candidates Turns Ads Viral -
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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Federal News Radio 1500 AM: OMB's Kundra stakes out new e-gov approach

Kundra also believes that in the five-to-seven years since many of these e-government programs were first contemplated technology has changed dramatically and that is what needs to be updated.
Federal News Radio 1500 AM: OMB's Kundra stakes out new e-gov approach
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