Although the Internet takes us everywhere in cyberspace, it usually requires us to be seated behind a desk. In contrast, the cellphone lets us walk through the world, fully connected. Cellphone explores the history of mobility in media--from books to cameras to transistor radios to laptops--and examines the unique impact of a device that sits in a pocket or palm, and lets us converse by voice or text. The restricting and liberating edge of accessibility transforms restaurants, public transport, automobiles, romance, literacy, parent-child relationships, war, and indeed all walks of life, trivial and profound. Like an organic cell that moves, evolves, combines with other cells, and generates, the cellphone has become a complex sparkplug of human life.
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"A superb and often amusing account of one of the greatest revolutions in human history, in which we are now living. The wristwatch phone of the old science fiction stories is now a reality! What more can we expect? Direct brain to brain communication? Stay tuned...."--Sir Arthur C. Clarke, author of 2001: A Space OdysseyAbout the Author:
Paul Levinson, PhD, is Professor of Communication & Media Studies at Fordham University in NYC.
His nonfiction books, including The Soft Edge (1997), Digital McLuhan (1999), Realspace (2003), Cellphone (2004), New New Media (2009; 2nd edition, 2012), McLuhan in an Age of Social Media (2015), and Fake News in Real Context (2016), have been translated into twelve languages. He co-edited Touching the Face of the Cosmos: On the Intersection of Space Travel and Religion in 2016. His science fiction novels include The Silk Code (winner of Locus Award for Best First Science Fiction Novel of 1999), Borrowed Tides (2001), The Consciousness Plague (2002), The Pixel Eye (2003), The Plot To Save Socrates (2006), Unburning Alexandria (2013), and Chronica (2014) - the last three of which are also known as the Sierra Waters trilogy, and are historical fiction as well as science fiction. His stories and novels have been nominated for Hugo, Nebula, Sturgeon, Edgar, Prometheus, and Audie Awards. He appears on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, the Discovery Channel, National Geographic, the History Channel, NPR, and numerous TV and radio programs. His 1972 LP, Twice Upon a Rhyme, was reissued in 2010. He was President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, 1998-2001. He reviews television in his InfiniteRegress.tv blog, and was listed in The Chronicle of Higher Education's "Top 10 Academic Twitterers" in 2009.
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