Programmed Visions: Software and Memory by Wendy Hui Kyong Chun, MIT Press:
New media thrives on cycles of obsolescence and renewal: from celebrations of cyber-everything to Y2K, from the dot-com bust to the next big things - mobile mobs, Web 3.0, cloud computing. In Programmed Visions, Wendy Hui Kyong Chun argues that these cycles result in part from the ways in which new media encapsulates a logic of programmability. New media proliferates “programmed visions,” which seek to shape and predict - even embody - a future based on past data. These programmed visions have also made computers, based on metaphor, metaphors for metaphor itself, for a general logic of substitutability.
Chun approaches the concept of programmability through the surprising materialization of software as a “thing” in its own right, tracing the hardening of programming into software and of memory into storage. Continue reading