21 July 2017

As Easy As Alphabet? Google Doodles The Medium = The Message

Get A Clue > it's the 106th Birthday of Marshall McLuhan today. Who was he? ...and how did Google re-invent itself as "Alphabet"??????
The Google doodle depicts the progress of humanity through the four ages that Professor McLuhan saw. That began with us sitting around a fire in the Acoustic Age, and we progressed through the Written Age, the age of Mass Production, and into the Global Village or Electronic Age that we live in now.
Marshall McLuhan
Canadian professor
Herbert Marshall McLuhan was a Canadian professor, philosopher, and public intellectual. His work is one of the cornerstones of the study of media theory, as well as having practical applications in the advertising and television industries. Wikipedia 
Who was is Marshall McLuhan?
The man who predicted the internet had a stark warning for how it might be used
"Marshall McLuhan is being celebrated by a Google doodle, which claims him as the man who predicted the internet and the impact it would have. But he was also the man who foresaw the many dangers that it now poses to us.
As he predicted the internet, he pointed to the tremendous, transformative effects that it could have – and that it would go on to have, throughout culture. He described it as a "cool" technology, meaning that unlike the hot technology of print it would encourage interactivity and participation, allowing anyone to contribute.
That would have the effect of creating a "global village" – one of many catchy, influential phrases that he coined – one which could transform the way that people understand and interact with each other in the most profound ways.
And Professor McLuhan didn't only seem to predict the internet in broad, philosophical terms. At times he seems to describe the exact mechanisms of how it works now.
"The next medium, whatever it is – it may be the extension of consciousness – will include television as its content, not as its environment," he wrote in 1962. "A computer as a research and communication instrument could enhance retrieval, obsolesce mass library organisation, retrieve the individual's encyclopedic function and flip it into a private line to speedily tailored data of a saleable kind."
What Professor McLuhan is talking about sounds a lot like the internet, but his predictions actually came decades before the web arrived. The internet itself has proven Professor McLuhan more right than he might ever have imagined, allowing him to emerge from the occasional mockery to which he has been subjected.
But just as he is praised for his predictions of the transformative power of the internet, he should be heeded in his terrifying warnings about what it could be used for. Professor McLuhan is remembered for the phrase "the medium is the message", signifying his belief that it was the way someone receives information that mattered as much as or more than the actual information itself. That in turn demonstrated both the power of and the problems with the way the media can shape our understanding.
"Once we have surrendered our senses and nervous systems to the private manipulation of those who would try to benefit by taking a lease on our eyes and ears and nerves, we don't really have any rights left," he wrote. It seems a prescient warning about the ways that the most powerful things about the internet – its ability to bring people together in communities and alter the ways we see the world – would be harnessed by private companies, who would be able to change our world just as profoundly.
Continue reading? GO HERE > http://www.independent.co.uk Independent Tech

Marshall who???
Biography from his official estate website
McLuhan was still a twenty-year old undergraduate at the University of Manitoba, in western Canada, in the dirty '30's, when he wrote in his diary that he would never become an academic. He was learning in spite of his professors, but he would become a professor of English in spite of himself. After Manitoba, graduate work at Cambridge University planted the seed for McLuhan’s eventual move toward media analysis. Looking back on both his own Cambridge years and the longer history of the institution, he reflected that a principal aim of the faculty could be summarized as the training of perception, a phrase that aptly summarizes his own aim throughout his career.
He investigated lessons on the training of perception from his Cambridge professors, such as I.A. Richards (The Meaning of Meaning, Practical Criticism), and forward to discoveries from James Joyce, the symbolist poets, Ezra Pound; back to antiquity and the myth of Narcissus, forward to the mythic structure of modern Western culture dominated by electric technology . . . Understanding Media, first published in 1964, focuses on the media effects that permeate society and culture, but McLuhan’s starting point is always the individual, because he defines media as technological extensions of the body. As a result, McLuhan often puts his inquiry and his conclusions in terms of the ratio between the physical senses (the extent to which we depend on them relative to each other) and the consequences of modifications to that ratio. This invariably entails a psychological dimension. Thus, the invention of the alphabet and the resulting intensification of the visual sense in the communication process gave sight priority over hearing, but the effect was so powerful that it went beyond communication through language to reshape literate society’s conception and use of space. . .
Flash Fast-Forward > By the time the decade ended, he had collaborated with Canadian artist Harley Parker on Through the Vanishing Point: Space in Poetry and Painting and once more with Quentin Fiore and Jerome Agel on War and Peace in the Global Village. This popular paperback, exploding at every page with McLuhan’s observations juxtaposed to a visual chronicle of twentieth century happenings, bore the improbable subtitle, an inventory of some of the current spastic situations that could be eliminated by more feedforward. The book looks and feels light years away from the Cambridge University of the 1930s where McLuhan trained, but that was just where he had picked up the idea of feedforward from his teacher I. A. Richards.
McLuhan wrote with no knowledge of galvanic skin response technology, terminal node controllers, or the Apple Newton. He might not have been able even to imagine what a biomouse is. But he pointed the way to understanding all of these, not in themselves, but in their relation to each other, to older technologies, and above all in relation to ourselves our bodies, our physical senses, our psychic balance. When he published Understanding Media in 1964, he was disturbed about mankind’s shuffling toward the twenty-first century in the shackles of nineteenth century perceptions. He might be no less disturbed today. And he would continue to issue the challenge that confronts the reader at every page of his writings to cast off those shackles.
– By Terrence Gordon (July 2002)
Note the source: https://www.marshallmcluhan.com/biography/
W. Terrence Gordon is the author of the biography, Marshall McLuhan: Escape into Understanding (Gingko Press. ISBN 1-58423-112-2).
Published on Aug 9, 2011
Views: 308,498
Herbert Marshall Mcluhan (*1911 - +1979) lecture recorded by ABC Radio National Network on 27 June 1979 in Australia.
For the best resource collection of his work check out the page Mcluhan on Maui (MOM) here:
The best documentary about Mcluhan (in four parts) is definitely CBC's Life and Times: Understanding Mcluhan here:
part 1:
People seriously studying his work I can point to Douglas Hofstaedter. His work resembles Mcluhan's understanding on the basic mechanics behind the mind: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n8m7lF...
Further elaboration on the process chiasmus upholds for analogy and the role of metaphor as linguistic device under-grinding its mechanics might find ample references in Patricia's Phd Paper Chi-thinking: Chiasmus and cognition here:
Note that she departs from Mark Turner's assumption of the parable as a substitute for chiasmus.
Then of course there is the great Noam Chomsky who Mcluhan mentiones in his letters as "stuffing language into grammar". Transcripts of his theories on language and the mind can be found here:
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