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martes, marzo 25, 2008


Sobre la "barrera mental" en la distinción entre software y hardware

The Sociotechnical Boundaries of Hardware and Software: A Humpty Dumpty History -- Jesiek 26 (6): 497 -- Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society
This article traces the historical development of the boundaries around computer software and hardware. On one hand, the author documents ongoing discussions about the technical equivalence of hardware and software. On the other hand, he accounts for the stubborn persistence of these terms as markers for two distinct spheres of technology, knowledge, and practice. By using theoretical concepts such as "boundary work" and "coproduction," the author argues that ongoing efforts to negotiate the boundaries between hardware and software are significantly "sociotechnical" in that they involve both social and technical considerations. The analysis culminates with a discussion of the more recent rise of the "hardware/software codesign" movement. Particular emphasis is placed on the conditions that led to the emergence of codesign and the ongoing challenges faced by its proponents. The article concludes by describing how codesign points toward a more reflexive and socially responsible culture of computer design and use.

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