Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Chapter 22

Professor Strate has written chapter 22 in the last homework assignment for this class, titled “Cybertime.”  Strate stresses the importance to consider the concept of cybertime.  It represents the intersection of the computer’s time-telling function, the computer’s representational function, and our own subjective experience of time with interactions with the computer.  Strate mentions how the computer can be traced back to many inventions way back when, but he was the one to compare it to the mechanical clock developed in the middle ages.  He does this because both the computer and the clock produce information only.  I do remember talking about this a few classes ago, but Strate mentions in his piece how digital displays of time have many objections.  With the traditional clock face people can see all the possibilities of time by looking at all of the numbers, while a digital clock is decontextualized time (the present time).  “Cybertime is based on a series of separate and distinct electronic pulses.”  An important distinction that Strate mentions is that digital time is a quantitative concept of time, not just a quantitative measurement of time.  He defines cybertime as absolute, digital, and quick time.  I like how professor Strate compared cybertime with real time.  Real time is formed by physical change, continuous, divisible, tied to the rhythms of nature, and monochronic, while cybertime is independent of its microworld, digital, atomistic, quicktime, and polychronic.  Virtual time is defined as “virtual reality’s internally generated sense of time and may be used in reference to both computer-generated virtual worlds and the illusion of reality created by all forms of media.”  The key is that cybertime is digital.  The term dimension is also associated with cybertime, for time and space.  It is multidimensional, not one-dimensional.  On a different topic, one fear for cybertime is the loss of privacy and that every move could be electronically recorded for later use.  Computers are smart in that they can predict the future—“they lock future events into a predetermined course in a way schedules cannot.”  Interaction with computer media includes our use of time or cyberchronemics.  Sacred time is a form of cybertime.  One sentence in Strate’s piece that jumped out at me was that we need to remember that time is a network of relations among different events.

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