Posted by: ARNoack | October 1, 2012

Analogue Media vs. Digital Hardware

The book “Media and Society” says this in chapter 7 about the immateriality of digital content : “with digital content, you don’t have to come into contact with a physical media form.” However, while digital media itself has no physical dimensions, the devices used for viewing, interacting with, storing and dispersing media still do. So, in a sense, all media, analogue and digital, are still permanently linked to some physical object.

Digital content is invisible to us without processors, microchips and displays, and it’s useless to us without keyboards, mice and touch screens. If we’re stuck with physical things, what’s the advantage of digital media? It can be manipulated, reproduced, converted and shared with ease. Think about typing – make one mistake on a typewriter and you had to retype the entire document. You could use correction fluid, but that was messy and unprofessional. I don’t think blogging would’ve gotten very far on typewriters. Now modern keyboards and word processing allow us to easily manipulate text and quickly expunge errors, all without using a scrap of paper!

What are other examples of how communication technology has changed our day to day lives? What skills are dying out as a result of new media? What new digital skills are replacing them?

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