Thursday, June 28, 2012

Communications and Cyberspace: Chapter 22

In Chapter 22, Professor Strate proposes the concept of cybertime and virtual time. His main argument goes, "the computer functions both as a clock- keeping, measuring, and producing time both for the outside world and its own internal microworld-and as a medium- generating "virtual time" through stories, games and audiovisual presentation". I find this statement interesting because I find that while the computer keeps track of time, I also find myself losing track of time easily when I'm on the Internet. The creation of terms cybertime and "virtual time" exhibit the immense impact the digital world has on our reality. It was even able to infiltrate one of the most objective parts of the real world. The chapter is introduced by paralleling the computer with the clock and their similar functions. Both technologies manufacture pure information. While the computer also serves as clock, it is unlike any other timepiece because "the central processor generates time for the computer's internal world". This is a fascinating idea because time is often thought as an element that cannot be created nor molded. Another interesting point made was that the computer functions as a medium of time but not in the traditional sense. The computer and communicate a sense of time that is not exactly the time but rather "virtual time". Virtual time refers to the sense of time propagated in the virtual reality and computer generated worlds. VR has become so involved and powerful that it even has its own separate sense of time. (that's kind of scary)

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