Tuesday, September 30, 2014

You and Your Parents (1950)

I chose the film You and Your Parents filmed in 1950 because it instantly reminded me of the control struggle between young adults and there parents. This reminded me of the control revolution where the increase in knowledge and responsibility caused parents to become more strict than before. In this film the young adult named Dick decides he's going to run away from home, but he first visits his club leader who changes his mind. He explains that his parent are used to a certain amount of control over his life and are having trouble releasing it. This reminds me to one of the articles from the control revolution where it mentions a lot of train crashes. The younger dick was reckless and did not know what he was doing so he got himself into trouble so his parents had to watch him. But as he got older Dick was able to control himself and stay out of trouble. Dick's parent how were use to controlling him so much that they continued to do so. Dick had become automated to make the good decisions for himself and handle the consequence of his bad decisions. His parents still did not trust him so he had to earn the trust of his parents in order to get more freedom to control himself and become a completely self-sufficient human being. And in the end Dick had less restrictions because of the respect he earned by being responsible for himself. So clear it up Dick could be interchanged with new technology in the control era while his parents are the people who control the new technologies to keep it in place. And in the end Dick is postindustrial and is automatic no longer need control.

Duck and Cover

Duck and Cover was a film created in 1951 to teach children what to do in case there was an atomic attack on America.  This film was important for citizens in there time period because it was post world war II and the Cold War was in its beginning stages so America had to be cautious.  When I first seen this film I thought it was pretty comical but after the second still was comical but I realized it was important in the modern information society.  This video can pertain to global network but more so control.  The US wanted to students to be mindful of how to avoid atomic attacks but I think underlying that was the fact that the US Department of Defense/government wanted to put fear into citizens to control them.  The instructional video to hide from an atomic bomb, gave citizens the impression that there was actually going to be an atomic bomb to hit the US, which I know as well as anybody else who knows about history and politics, that this would not have happened.  It was easy to scare people because the war recently ended and there were still lingering feelings about it.  This is helpful to the class because it shows another subtle way control was used.

Monday, September 29, 2014

If Mirrors Could Speak

I chose the film "If Mirrors Could Speak-Self Image Film" for my topic. This film portrayed three young children who were seen as "clowns" by their peers because of the way they acted. These kids couldn't tell how they were acting until they looked at themselves in a mirror and realized how other people viewed them. It sort of seemed like this film related to control because the mirror was telling the kids how they should act towards other people or the "right way" to act towards other people. Two of the three kids realized how they were acting and changed themselves for the better but one kid fails to realize how he's acting and remains a "clown". I feel like this can relate to to our modern information infrastructure because everybody has times when they think they're not acting a certain way, but other people perceive them differently. For instance, I get told I'm a serious person alot, but I don't realize it. That isn't necessarily a bad thing but the idea is the same. Everyone is different, you simply can't control how people act, but you can let them know, because a lot of the time people don't realize it. Although this film didn't have a main theme that relates to the control revolution, I think the idea of try to control of people should behave does, and it is something that people still try to do today.

Sentinel in the Sky


The video I watched was "Sentinel in the Sky" and it was about the development of technology in airplanes. It is one of the most necessary developments because people need to be aware of things they cannot see and using the echo principle they developed radar. By emitting radio waves we can measure distances of things around us. I found this interesting because I never had an in-depth knowledge of how it truly functions, just that it is used every single day in modern aircrafts. Normal clouds do not reflect the beams, but heavy rain clouds do so radar can pick up storms to warn pilots. This is one of the most innovative pieces of technology that we use to link our world. Many people take technology like this for granted and this video made me think about how much we rely on machines for basic needs like safety. By developing useful technology like the radar, our world has become much more interconnected and our information more easily accessible.

"MP3 Secrets"

The “Computer Chronicles” that was introduced in 10/09/2001 dealt with the guidance of technologies regarding digital music, MP3 files. The online computer migration of music files was a digital revolution at the time. It showed the basics of how to find MP3 on the Internet, the use of portable mp3 players, and how to burn music CDs. It was a big step in technological innovation because music files were able to be stored on a computer for the first time. MP3 files could be compressed small enough for people to download it from the Internet and be stored in portable devices such as a MP3 player. It was remarkable to know that this technology was introduced only 13 years ago but seems to be to be outdated by decades. The people on the show was excited to introduce a portable device that plays mp3 files but now most of us have this technology along with the ability to play various format of music files in our cell phones. Also, it explains how we can burn music files in CDs but majority of us do not listen to music from CDs anymore due to the rise of digital audios. One thing that didn’t change is the legality of issues with copyrights. It introduced the moral problems with “Napster” and how it has the ability to freely share files with one another. Though Napster eventually ran into legal issues and ceased operations, there are still illegal audio file sharing today through the Internet. I think this is a great example of control revolution: when technological innovation extends, further extension of control technology is essential.  

Video Link:

Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?

The video I chose to watch was a student created short film created in 1958 to highlight the dangers of automation and our dependencies on technology. Throughout the film, there are various pieces of technology featured such as the telephone, tv, radio, etc. The film also follows a family throughout an average day, however, there is virtually no communication between them because this new technology is causing rift between them. A couple scenes in particular that really stuck with me was when the mom checks in on her son to only have his attention focused on the tv in an almost trance-like state. In the next scene as they're eating their dinner, the only sound we hear is the sound of the tv. The son then immediately leaves the dinner table abruptly to go back and watch tv while the mom looks visibly upset about this.
This video is important to show that even advances in technology a long time ago already had the capability of causing a rift in society and families. It wasn't just factory workers that were oppressed during this time because machines were taking their jobs, other people were too because machines were taking their families. Today, we really don't think twice about locking ourselves in our rooms and binge watching our latest guilty pleasure instead of spending quality time with our family. Heck, we even consider watching a movie with our family as spending "quality time" with each other even though we don't speak a word or get closer to each other as a family emotionally or intellectually. Although technological advances are important, we sometimes take for granted the impact they can have on our emotion connections with our loved ones.

What is "Good Sportsmanship"?

This video is all about good ol' sportsmanship. It is one of the Coronet Instructional Films that "teaches" you how to live a certain aspect of your life. They tell you what good sportsmanship is:
1. play fair
2. play best for the team
3. take results well
All of these rules are sound and I could see that they could be beneficial to outcomes of life. But the whole video was very subjective in that there was no room for arguing against the ideas they were putting out. The video was saying things like, "everybody likes a good sport," and, "everyone likes you and you feel better about yourself. This would link to the idea that the control revolution is an ongoing period. These videos tell you how to be a good person in the eyes of society. But my question is who shapes the mold for what society wants everyone to be?

"Man on the Land"
     "Man on the Land" is a animated story line that goes through different eras of time while showing how we have improved as an industrial society in many ways. It starts out by showing a caveman and how he created his first weapon. This weapon made it easier to catch the supply of food needed to survive. This weapon gave extra power and made it more efficient to hunt. This so called "man" in the archive started at "just living", but with time he was able to actually "make a living". Freedom seemed to  dependent on american agriculture. One thing I think the archive lacked was the negative side of the pre and post industrialization. It was a very positive movie that only showed the benefits. A similarity of back then and today was always the need for improvement. People are still today thinking of the next big thing. I am assuming that this archive is directed toward a younger audience, but it sums up the information society in pre and postindustrial times very well. 

Microsoft Research Video: Using Tablet PCs, ConferenceXP, OneNote, and Classroom Presenter to Enhance Student Learning Outcomes

In this video, a speaker presents information about Tablet PCs, ConferenceXP, OneNote, and Classroom Presenter. These are all technologies that the speaker and his supporters hope to incorporateinto the classroom. I have some personal experience with the experimentation of integration of new technologies into the classroom because my senior year of high school, a handful of students were picked to use iPads in all of their classes. There was controversy because some people argued that it would simply distract the students and take away from their education. However the other side was arguing the same things the speaker in this video is. He is suggesting that these technologies will be used to monitor the student's progress in a way that is not possible in your average notebook and pen classroom. They will use these technologies to monitor students' note taking without having to look over their shoulder. He also goes into how these technologies help the instructors, so that teachers and students are mutually benefiting from using these technologies in the classroom. This video was mainly interesting to me because it related to a debate I feel like I've been hearing my entire schooling career: Does technology help or hinder students' learning? It is providing examples of technology helping our experiences rather than taking them over, relating to the Control Revolution. People want to control the progress in society, not let it run wild.

Net Cafe: Web StartUps

The Net Cafe video "Web Startups" displays an array of web site start up companies from the 2000s. One of the startups featured in the video is a search engine most of us use every day called Google. This video is useful to students of out modern day infrastructure because it gives an in depth analysis of the early stages of the internet. All of the startup companies displayed in the video were based off the idea that computers could make the lives of humans easier and provide more time for leisure. This is a prime example of automation and the postindustrial society. For example, former 49ers quarterback Steve Young was featured in his startup company The website searches all of one's local stores for items within the store. Today this company has become obsolete, however, in the year 2000 this made running around to different stores, trying to find a certain item much easier and gave the user more leisure time. "Web Startups" is a great example for those information society students who want to learn more about the Postindustrial society.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Are you popular?

I did the video called "Are you popular?"

I thought this video was interesting/important because it showed the control society at work. It goes over why and how some people are popular. I think if you look at the film like it's a harmless video for children about being popular, it doesn't seem that bad. But I was watching to see if it had relevance to our class and from that viewpoint I thought it was almost hilariously pro-control society. It makes a point about girls who sleep around are not popular, and towards the end they make their point about how good men and woman are popular, and home and family can help people be popular. I feel like popularity is subjective and there's no one way to become popular, yet this video definitely made it seem like theres a right way and a wrong way. It's important since it shows that the makers of the video were trying to get the viewers to act in a certain way by promising that they will be popular.

Social Courtesy Instructional Video

The video I chose is called “Social Courtesy,” and it belongs to a group called Coronet Instructional Films. It was made in 1951 and basically shows the audience how to be friendlier people and the types of social graces that will make other people like you better. The entire video shows the main character, Bill, performing rude actions towards his peers. After each action, an unidentifiable speaker tells him how to do this differently. Bill is then placed in the same scenario and acts in a friendlier manner, and everyone around him is happier.

This video is useful to students in an information society class because it contains certain aspects of the control revolution framework, and can be used as an example of it. Although the main point is to make people friendlier in general, it shows people how to act in extremely specific ways and say specific things. It exemplifies a certain amount of control that society wanted over every aspect of life. In addition, it is interesting that this type of lesson was shown in an instructional video, rather than a book or pamphlet. Because of the young actors and actresses in the film, it may have been intended to be shown in schools.

Friday, September 26, 2014

The Deindustrialization of Detroit

Thomas Sugrue's "The Damining Mark of False Prosperities"' The Deindustrialization of Detroit portrays Metropolitan Detroit in the 1940s through the 1960s and the challenges the city, workforce, and overall industrial economy faced (and still face today) due to automation, deindustrialization, and discrimation caused by the movement of major auto companies out of the city as did the smaller businesses (runaway shops) that supplied them.
          In the 1940s, Detroit was booming with industry, car manufacturers and independent auto bodies, were prospering, and the number of entry-level manufacturing jobs was growing so fast that discriminatory barriers lost some of their salience. Even when large segments of the auto industry remained closed to black workers, they still found operative jobs in the automobile, and other related industries. However by the 1950s, this changed drastically. By the 1950s, Detroit had become unrecognizable. Sugrue stated this was due to deindustrialization( the closing, downsizing, and relocation of plants and sometimes whole industries) and capital mobility. "Advances in communication and transportation, the transformation of industrial technology, the acceleration of regional and international economic competition, and the expansion of industry in low-wage regions, especially the South, reshaped the geography of American cities". Major auto-companies like Ford and Chrysler were expanding to down south, and to rural areas in Ohio and Indiana thus reducing their employment in their older Detroit-area plants.
          Sugrue describes "Automation" as the most important force that restructured Detroit's Economy after World War II due to the advent of new automated processes in the automobile, auto parts, and machine tool industries. Automation offered two major benefits to manufacturers by promising to increase out, and reduce labor costs. These automated assembly lines, and new technologies, took the place of thousands of employees and left them jobless. Automation also led to auto companies to take on productive capacities formerly left to independent manufacturers, thus driving many parts suppliers out of business and further reducing Detroit's employment base. Sugrue challenges the idea that the relocation of corporations was a "neutral response to economic forces" and technological advances and more because automation and decentralization together could take away power from workers and labor unions.
          Other reasons described by Sugrue that were major factors in plant relocation were high taxes, costs of labor, and decentralization. Detroit's tax levels were higher than the cities where the new plants were located. During the Korean war buildup only 7.5% of the 353 million dollar budget allocated for the purchase of new equipment and construction in metropolitan Detroit actually went to firms located within Detroit. Detroit had become a "ghost arsenal". The use of overtime in the mid 50s also became more common and allowed managers to reduce the costs of hiring and training new workers, and benefits packages, while maintaining high production levels. This has serious negative effects on people trying to enter the workforce, and young black men in particular. Young black men between ages 21-29 were four times more likely to be out of work then young white men.
          Overall, this article described what once was thought to be a city filled with hope and industrial longevity, turned into what was (and still remains in the city today) a landscape rotted by factory buildings that once were, and crippled by unemployment.
          Thomas Sugrue is well known for this article as it has won many awards including the Bancroft prize in History. Sugrue actually grew up in Detroit Michigan, so it is fair to say he knows what he is talking about. He is an alumni of Columbia University with a degree in history and also has a PhD in History from Harvard. This article is important because he has background knowledge and talks about the problems that the city he grew up in faced, and still face today.

A PostMortem on Daniel Bell's Postindustrialism

A Postmortem on Daniel Bell's Postindustrialism was written by Laurence Veysey, a history professor at the University of California - Santa Cruz. The article was published in 1982 by the Johns Hopkins University press, and it focuses on the works of Daniel Bell who wrote The coming of Post-Industrialization Society (1973) and The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism (1976). Bell’s first work announces talks about “…technical knowledge and its steady use by elites to secure social order and control” (Veysey). His second work argues that romanticism has taken over American culture. Veysey critics the works of Daniel Bell and delivers a perspective into Bell’s view of the postindustrial society. In this scholarly article, Veysey finds contradictions in the works of Bell and comments on his shift of tone between his two works.
Although Bell, who wrote his works during the 1970s, talks about how the postindustrial ‘era’ was on the rise, Veysey notes that an ‘era’ of this sort was noted “…long ago before Daniel Bell’s writings on the subject, by such figures as David Riesman, John Kenneth Galbraith, and Walt W. Rostow” (Veysey). These notable writers wrote pieces on this rise of a new era during the 1920’s, 1950s, and 1960s. With that said, this article focuses on how Bell’s contradictions between his works leads to an unreliable perspective on the postindustrial era. Bell romanticized view in his second work completely turns his views around by then stating that the “…spirit of postindustrial society turns out to be neither an advancing technocratic rationality, nor even the continued chanciness to politics, but a romantic hedonism that leads to a reckless squandering of resources” (Veysey). Veysey goes on to explain how Bell’s views do not complement the American society, rather, it focuses on the small elite groups whose effect is minor. Veysey observes that while in his first book he was more of a prophet, late in his second book he drops down to the ordinary consumer level and bases his views on the bad news he listens to, trying to make sense of a myriad of problems Americans are facing day-to-day.
Arguing against Bell, Veysey states that the concept of post industrialization has merit only as it is compared to the American twentieth century past and not an idea based on futurology. More importantly, he states the it is hard to note exactly when this postindustrial age began, and this relates to modern society today in the sense that year-to-year we are seeing postindustrial advances and new signs of evolution. He believes that “the important question is not whether the prophets of post industrialization saw the future correctly, for it is by now clear, in an era of contracting possibilities, that their vision of the future was ludicrously optimistic” (Veysey).
Veysey ultimately believes that the post industrialization era began near the 1920’s where attitudes changed dramatically. Veysey brings out intriguing points on the contradictory ways of Bell’s books, and he delivers his perspective on Post industrialization in an efficient and well proposed manner. He first analyzes the contradictions in Bell’s works, and then he leads his way into his own views and why they may be the more reliable opinion in post industrialization today.

Works Cited

Veysey, L. (1982). A Postmortem on Daniel Bell's Postindustrialism. American Quarterly 34:1 .

Thursday, September 25, 2014


I chose to research Wikipedia because it a wonderful site to use to find a basic knowledge of almost anything, and I also wanted to find out if it was trust worthy way back then. The oldest article I could find was "Coase's Penguin, or Linux and "The Nature of the Firm" published by Yochai Benkler in The Yale Law Journal in December of 2002. The article mentions that the Wikipedia project was created to create the first online encyclopedia. There were 2000 volunteers working on the project and it took 18 months to produce. The article also states that Wikipedia's pages should as good if not better than that of the Columbia's Encyclopedia, due to the fact that everyone posts would be edited multiple times all by experts. This is very bizarre considering the fact that Wikipedia is considered so untrustworthy now a days. I hope you found this interesting