Man-Computer Symbiosis Nugget

Man-Computer Symbiosis Nugget Assignment

J.C.R Licklider is another early pioneer in the computer field; his involvement helped solidify the “iron triangle” of industry, the military, and academia.   He went by the nickname of “Lick” (okay, I find that knowing this helps humanize him for me — because Lick — really?  Who doesn’t like a guy named Lick?)


So don’t be intimidated by his text, just let yourself read it and think about what he’s proposing — how it intersects with your own thinking and reading in the course so far.

Just like the Nugget assignment last week, you will find a “nugget”from “Man-Computer Symbiosis” and make it meaningful. However, this time you will link the nugget you choose to one thing currently on the Internet — ANY Internet space:  an app, a discussion forum, a website, absolutely anything that happens online.  This means that you will have to be more selective in choosing a nugget, and more deliberate about making “meaning” of this nugget by discussing it in relation to a current Internet “space.” 

(Review:  What is a nugget?  A passage from the reading, at least one paragraph in length, that grabs your attention in some way.  It could be a passage that puzzles you, or intrigues you, or resonates strongly with you. It could be a passage that you disagree with or that challenges your thinking in a new way.  The idea here is that the passage evokes some kind of strong response in you, one that makes you want to work with the passage to make it just as meaningful as possible).

The goal of this assignment is to read  Licklider’s essay carefully and respond to it imaginatively by thinking about how the computer currently works with us (men and women!)  to solve some of the hurdles that Licklider discusses.  By linking your nugget to a current Internet space, you are thinking imaginitively about Licklider’s early theories and applying them to current technology(ies).

Your work with Licklider should be both fun and in earnest. It should demonstrate your own deep engagement with a selection of the reading that resonates for you, and your blog post about the connections between the nugget and a current technology / internet space should stimulate thinking in your reader as well.

I would also add that your grappling with the nugget should give us some sense that you understand the overall claims Lick(lider) is making — how that nugget fits into the larger context of our our world today.

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