• Restoring Information’s Body

      Hardin, Steve (2011-02-16)
      As plenary speaker for the ASIS&T 2010 Annual Meeting, Lucy Suchman based her presentation on a reference by author N. Katherine Hayles asserting that information has lost its body. Efforts to restore information’s body must recognize the references and context of the information to bring the information back to a point of meaning. In exploring the importance of context for meaningful information, Suchman drew comparisons to the human work behind information, the agent critical to initiate an action, the work meaningful through indirect interactions with an object at a distance. She made further parallels to conversations with a disembodied head, remote control warfare and robotic health care – all interactions with machines, but with humans as invisible agents. Communications research, Suchman indicated, must be mindful of the connection between information and its body in order to fully understand information content.