A Framework for Understanding the Nature of Computers and Information

A Framework for Understanding the Nature of Computers and Information

Andrew Basden (University of Salford, UK)
Copyright: © 2008 |Pages: 50
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-036-3.ch005
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Abstract

"What is a computer?" and "What is information?" are questions that the reflective user will sometimes ponder. These questions do not refer to what the computer means to us, subjectively (or intersubjectively) nor as enabling particular applications, whether controlling or emancipatory in nature; those issues were addressed in chapter 4. What is at issue is the nature of the computer regardless of application and of (inter-)subjective meaning. What is it that differentiates computer from, for example, mechanical machine or electronic gadget on one hand, or from other information technology such as writing, printing, film or video on the other? Pre-theoretical experience continues to assert that there is a difference.

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