Our workdays are so filled with emails, instant messaging, and RSS feeds that we complain that there's t eugh time to get our actual work done. At home, we are besieged by telephone calls on landlines and cell phones, the beeps that signal text messages, and work emails on our BlackBerrys. It's too much, we cry (or type) as we update our Facebook pages, compose a blog post, or check to see what Shaquille O'Neal has to say on Twitter. In Texture, Richard Harper asks why we seek out new ways of communicating even as we complain about communication overload. Harper describes the mistaken assumptions of developers that more is always better and argues that users prefer simpler techlogies that allow them to create social bonds. Communication is t just the exchange of information. There is a texture to our communicative practices, manifest in the different means we choose to communicate (quick or slow, permanent or ephemeral).
Richard H. R. Harper, currently Principal Researcher in Socio-Digital Systems at Microsoft Research, has explored user-focused technical innovation in academic, corporate, and small company settings. He is the coauthor (with Abigail J. Sellen) of The Myth of the Paperless Office (MIT Press, 2001).
Winner of Winner of the inaugural AoIR Book Award presented by the Association of Internet Researchers..