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Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

Cover Image Copyright Year: 2013
Author(s): McCullough, M.
Publisher: MIT Press
Content Type : Books & eBooks
Topics: Communication, Networking & Broadcasting ;  Components, Circuits, Devices & Systems ;  Computing & Processing (Hardware/Software)
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Abstract

The world is filling with ever more kinds of media, in ever more contexts and formats. Glowing rectangles have become part of the scene; screens, large and small, appear everywhere. Physical locations are increasingly tagged and digitally augmented. Sensors, processors, and memory are not found only in chic smart phones but also built into everyday objects. Amid this flood, your attention practices matter more than ever. You might not be able to tune this world out. So it is worth remembering that underneath all these augmentations and data flows, fixed forms persist, and that to notice them can improve other sensibilities. In Ambient Commons, Malcolm McCullough explores the workings of attention though a rediscovery of surroundings. Not all that informs has been written and sent; not all attention involves deliberate thought. The intrinsic structure of space -- the layout of a studio, for example, or a plaza -- becomes part of any mental engagement with it. McCullough describes what he calls the Ambient: an increasing tendency to perceive information superabundance whole, where individual signals matter less and at least some mediation assumes inhabitable form. He explores how the fixed forms of architecture and the city play a cognitive role in the flow of ambient information. As a persistently inhabited world, can the Ambient be understood as a shared cultural resource, to be socially curated, voluntarily limited, and self-governed as if a commons? Ambient Commons invites you to look past current obsessions with smart phones to rethink attention itself, to care for more situated, often inescapable forms of information.

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      Frontmatter

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): i - xvii
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Half title, Title, Copyright, Dedication, Contents, Preface, Acknowledgments, Introduction View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Prologue: Street Level

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 1 - 3
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      The world is filling with ever more kinds of media, in ever more contexts and formats. Glowing rectangles have become part of the scene; screens, large and small, appear everywhere. Physical locations are increasingly tagged and digitally augmented. Sensors, processors, and memory are not found only in chic smart phones but also built into everyday objects. Amid this flood, your attention practices matter more than ever. You might not be able to tune this world out. So it is worth remembering that underneath all these augmentations and data flows, fixed forms persist, and that to notice them can improve other sensibilities. In Ambient Commons, Malcolm McCullough explores the workings of attention though a rediscovery of surroundings. Not all that informs has been written and sent; not all attention involves deliberate thought. The intrinsic structure of space -- the layout of a studio, for example, or a plaza -- becomes part of any mental engagement with it. McCullough describes what he calls the Ambient: an increasing tendency to perceive information superabundance whole, where individual signals matter less and at least some mediation assumes inhabitable form. He explores how the fixed forms of architecture and the city play a cognitive role in the flow of ambient information. As a persistently inhabited world, can the Ambient be understood as a shared cultural resource, to be socially curated, voluntarily limited, and self-governed as if a commons? Ambient Commons invites you to look past current obsessions with smart phones to rethink attention itself, to care for more situated, often inescapable forms of information. View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Ideas of the Ambient

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 5
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      The world is filling with ever more kinds of media, in ever more contexts and formats. Glowing rectangles have become part of the scene; screens, large and small, appear everywhere. Physical locations are increasingly tagged and digitally augmented. Sensors, processors, and memory are not found only in chic smart phones but also built into everyday objects. Amid this flood, your attention practices matter more than ever. You might not be able to tune this world out. So it is worth remembering that underneath all these augmentations and data flows, fixed forms persist, and that to notice them can improve other sensibilities. In Ambient Commons, Malcolm McCullough explores the workings of attention though a rediscovery of surroundings. Not all that informs has been written and sent; not all attention involves deliberate thought. The intrinsic structure of space -- the layout of a studio, for example, or a plaza -- becomes part of any mental engagement with it. McCullough describes what he calls the Ambient: an increasing tendency to perceive information superabundance whole, where individual signals matter less and at least some mediation assumes inhabitable form. He explores how the fixed forms of architecture and the city play a cognitive role in the flow of ambient information. As a persistently inhabited world, can the Ambient be understood as a shared cultural resource, to be socially curated, voluntarily limited, and self-governed as if a commons? Ambient Commons invites you to look past current obsessions with smart phones to rethink attention itself, to care for more situated, often inescapable forms of information. View full abstract»

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      Ambient

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 7 - 24
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: What Is Ambient?, Ambient Interface, In A Single Name, A New Firmament View full abstract»

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      Information

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 25 - 46
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Superabundance, Overconsumption, Information, of a Kind, Intrinsic Structure, The Eloquence of the World View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Attention

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 47 - 67
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Divided Attention, Beyond the Spotlight, An Amateur's Neuroscience, Resource Allocation, Knowledge Representations View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Embodiment

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 69 - 89
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Engaged Action, Habituation, Runaway Ontology, Situational Awareness, Effortless Attention, Taking Form View full abstract»

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      Fixity

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 91 - 108
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Mise-en-Scène, Making Sense through Form, Persistent High Resolution View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Toward an Environmental History of Information

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 109
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      The world is filling with ever more kinds of media, in ever more contexts and formats. Glowing rectangles have become part of the scene; screens, large and small, appear everywhere. Physical locations are increasingly tagged and digitally augmented. Sensors, processors, and memory are not found only in chic smart phones but also built into everyday objects. Amid this flood, your attention practices matter more than ever. You might not be able to tune this world out. So it is worth remembering that underneath all these augmentations and data flows, fixed forms persist, and that to notice them can improve other sensibilities. In Ambient Commons, Malcolm McCullough explores the workings of attention though a rediscovery of surroundings. Not all that informs has been written and sent; not all attention involves deliberate thought. The intrinsic structure of space -- the layout of a studio, for example, or a plaza -- becomes part of any mental engagement with it. McCullough describes what he calls the Ambient: an increasing tendency to perceive information superabundance whole, where individual signals matter less and at least some mediation assumes inhabitable form. He explores how the fixed forms of architecture and the city play a cognitive role in the flow of ambient information. As a persistently inhabited world, can the Ambient be understood as a shared cultural resource, to be socially curated, voluntarily limited, and self-governed as if a commons? Ambient Commons invites you to look past current obsessions with smart phones to rethink attention itself, to care for more situated, often inescapable forms of information. View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Tagging the Commons

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 111 - 136
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Urban Markup Languages, Carved Inscriptions, Rampant Signage, Cases in Adhesive Electronics, Awareness of a Commons View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Frames and Facades

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 137 - 165
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: The Facade Communicates, Glowing Forms, Media Facades, Window, Screen, Frame, Facade, New Surfaces, Amorphous Displays, Visual Overload Reconsidered View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Architectural Atmospheres

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 167 - 194
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Composing Air, Atmospheric Arts, Architectural Atmosphering, Conditioned by Air, Filling the Air, Reengineering for Air View full abstract»

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      Megacity Resources

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 195 - 224
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: The Rise of Urban Informatics, A New Mental Map, Wayshowing, New Epigraphy, U-City, Telecenters, Urban Resource Partnerships, Distraction Reconsidered View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Environmental History

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 225 - 251
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Disposition, History, and Criticism, Environment in the History of Information, Information in the History of Environment, American Space Reconsidered View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Governing the Ambient

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 253 - 274
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Recognizing Pollution, Information Ethics, Networked Commons, Tangible Information Commons View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Peak Distraction

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 275 - 283
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Synopsis and Retrospect, Sensibility, in the End View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Epilogue: Silent Commons

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 285 - 293
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      The world is filling with ever more kinds of media, in ever more contexts and formats. Glowing rectangles have become part of the scene; screens, large and small, appear everywhere. Physical locations are increasingly tagged and digitally augmented. Sensors, processors, and memory are not found only in chic smart phones but also built into everyday objects. Amid this flood, your attention practices matter more than ever. You might not be able to tune this world out. So it is worth remembering that underneath all these augmentations and data flows, fixed forms persist, and that to notice them can improve other sensibilities. In Ambient Commons, Malcolm McCullough explores the workings of attention though a rediscovery of surroundings. Not all that informs has been written and sent; not all attention involves deliberate thought. The intrinsic structure of space -- the layout of a studio, for example, or a plaza -- becomes part of any mental engagement with it. McCullough describes what he calls the Ambient: an increasing tendency to perceive information superabundance whole, where individual signals matter less and at least some mediation assumes inhabitable form. He explores how the fixed forms of architecture and the city play a cognitive role in the flow of ambient information. As a persistently inhabited world, can the Ambient be understood as a shared cultural resource, to be socially curated, voluntarily limited, and self-governed as if a commons? Ambient Commons invites you to look past current obsessions with smart phones to rethink attention itself, to care for more situated, often inescapable forms of information. View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Notes

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 295 - 333
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      This chapter contains sections titled: Prologue, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10, Chapter 111, Chapter 12, Epilogue View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Name Index

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 335 - 338
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      The world is filling with ever more kinds of media, in ever more contexts and formats. Glowing rectangles have become part of the scene; screens, large and small, appear everywhere. Physical locations are increasingly tagged and digitally augmented. Sensors, processors, and memory are not found only in chic smart phones but also built into everyday objects. Amid this flood, your attention practices matter more than ever. You might not be able to tune this world out. So it is worth remembering that underneath all these augmentations and data flows, fixed forms persist, and that to notice them can improve other sensibilities. In Ambient Commons, Malcolm McCullough explores the workings of attention though a rediscovery of surroundings. Not all that informs has been written and sent; not all attention involves deliberate thought. The intrinsic structure of space -- the layout of a studio, for example, or a plaza -- becomes part of any mental engagement with it. McCullough describes what he calls the Ambient: an increasing tendency to perceive information superabundance whole, where individual signals matter less and at least some mediation assumes inhabitable form. He explores how the fixed forms of architecture and the city play a cognitive role in the flow of ambient information. As a persistently inhabited world, can the Ambient be understood as a shared cultural resource, to be socially curated, voluntarily limited, and self-governed as if a commons? Ambient Commons invites you to look past current obsessions with smart phones to rethink attention itself, to care for more situated, often inescapable forms of information. View full abstract»

    • Full text access may be available. Click article title to sign in or learn about subscription options.

      Subject Index

      McCullough, M.
      Ambient Commons:Attention in the Age of Embodied Information

      Page(s): 339 - 347
      Copyright Year: 2013

      MIT Press eBook Chapters

      The world is filling with ever more kinds of media, in ever more contexts and formats. Glowing rectangles have become part of the scene; screens, large and small, appear everywhere. Physical locations are increasingly tagged and digitally augmented. Sensors, processors, and memory are not found only in chic smart phones but also built into everyday objects. Amid this flood, your attention practices matter more than ever. You might not be able to tune this world out. So it is worth remembering that underneath all these augmentations and data flows, fixed forms persist, and that to notice them can improve other sensibilities. In Ambient Commons, Malcolm McCullough explores the workings of attention though a rediscovery of surroundings. Not all that informs has been written and sent; not all attention involves deliberate thought. The intrinsic structure of space -- the layout of a studio, for example, or a plaza -- becomes part of any mental engagement with it. McCullough describes what he calls the Ambient: an increasing tendency to perceive information superabundance whole, where individual signals matter less and at least some mediation assumes inhabitable form. He explores how the fixed forms of architecture and the city play a cognitive role in the flow of ambient information. As a persistently inhabited world, can the Ambient be understood as a shared cultural resource, to be socially curated, voluntarily limited, and self-governed as if a commons? Ambient Commons invites you to look past current obsessions with smart phones to rethink attention itself, to care for more situated, often inescapable forms of information. View full abstract»




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