In the final project for the class I plan to explore the interaction of humans and technology as expressed through Ellen Ullman’s The Bug and William Gibson’s Agrippa. The affect technology has on the user and the emotional response is an element that both works share. Also, the time frame of the story in The Bug is roughly the same as the release date of Agrippa. Digital Technology was new to the public and produced a level of uncertainty. This emotional response is generally negative and could also be the precursor to others including fear, hate, and so on. Which brings me to my current stretch at an argument, is the human element the error in human interface? In other words, is the emotional response to technology justifiable, or how much is technology to blame for those responses?
The examples I will use from The Bug include the emotional track record of the main characters through the course of the story. Their fictional lives are the most compelling evidence to the argument. I will also include references to the software that is written and the character’s sentiment towards it. In contrast, the evidence from Agrippa is the presentation of the piece itself. Examples will include how it was distributed and how the readers responded to it. This means that one of my scholarly works will likely be the Hodge piece on Agrippa in order to cite these responses. I will to decide on the other two as I proceed to write the material.
The form I was planning on presenting the project might not be obtainable in the time frame. I hoped to produce a webpage that included functional graphics that illustrated elements from both works. My plan right now is to write the material to meet the required 6-8 pages and have proper sources. Then produce the emulating graphics. Then if I can produce it in time, create the web page. The other option is to use the same graphics in print as a hand in. This backup plan is not ideal, but my other classes might force my hand on that matter.
This is the rough skeleton of how I am currently approaching this project.