The Digital Turn

How the Internet Transforms Our Existence

by Wim Westera



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 12/20/2012

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 310
ISBN : 9781477250327
Format : E-Book
Dimensions : N/A
Page Count : 310
ISBN : 9781477250334

About the Book

Awarded with the US National Indie Excellence Award 2014 in Social Media. This book is about digital media. Even more, the book is about us. It explains how the ever-growing flood of digital media affects our perceptions of the world, change our behaviors and eventually transform our very existence. In the era of Facebook, Twitter, Google, and Apple, being online is the standard. We spend many hours a day gazing at our screens, traversing the virtual realm, and posting our tweets, tags, and “likes.” Billions of years of evolution have prepared us for life at the savannas. It took us less than two decades to radically transform our biotope. Being online is no less than a fundamentally different mode of being. It is likely to produce a fragmented, detached, and distorted view of the world. What will be our understanding of the world when all certainties that result from living in a material world become useless? What will be our role and position when computer intelligence surpasses human intelligence? How can we avoid losing grip of the significance of identity, friendship, social engagement, and eventually life at large? The book explains the mechanisms and consequences of engaging in online spaces. It offers an accessible means for attaining a better understanding of the ways digital media influence our lives. It is a compact guide to becoming media literate and to preparing us for the advanced digital services that are yet to come. This makes the book an indispensable aid for every twenty-first-century citizen.

About the Author

Wim Westera is full professor of digital media at the Open University of the Netherlands. He holds a PhD in physics (Utrecht University). After having been trained as an academic film and TV producer at the BBC, he specialized in media production and created dozens of informative TV programs and documentaries. Since the nineties, he has been involved as a researcher and practitioner in educational simulation and multimedia and technology-enhanced learning. Through his unique voice in columns and blogs, he became a renowned opinion leader in the domain of digital media, both at a national and an international level. The book, The Digital Turn, is a derivative of his long-standing professional involvement in media research and development. His main motive for writing this book has been to enable readers to enhance their digital media literacy and remain in control of the media they use. Understanding the mechanisms of digital media beyond the level of practical operation is a necessary condition for surviving the digital turn.