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Subversion, Conversion, DevelopmentCross-Cultural Knowledge Exchange and the Politics of Design$
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James Leach and Lee Wilson

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780262027168

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262027168.001.0001

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Subversion, Conversion, Development

Subversion, Conversion, Development

Imaginaries, Knowledge Forms, and the Uses of ICTs

(p.231) 12 Subversion, Conversion, Development
Subversion, Conversion, Development

James Leach

Lee Wilson

The MIT Press

This chapter draws together contributions to the volume Subversion, Conversion, Development. Cross-Cultural Knowledge Encounter and the Politics of Design to make several novel arguments in relation to the design and use of ICT’s. Firstly, we note that while attention in new media studies has focussed on the use and reuse of content and meaning, the studies collected here offer a consideration of hardware and technology's potential for re-purposing, redesign, even subversion, in its uptake by different users. But for this to make positive sense, attention must be given to the different value systems, interests, and cultural worlds in which people live. We focus on the theme of knowledge, arguing that all knowledge is local knowledge, and as such, is both vulnerable to, and informative for, the designers of technologies. Imaginaries are highlighted as guiding design and use, and holding possibilities for important innovations and developments of appropriate technologies. The issue of reuse and redesign is approached through an idea of open technology, guided by actual knowledge of different ways of knowing and modes of life.

Keywords:   Imaginaries, New Media, Mapping, Open Technologies, Participatory Design, Obsolescence

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