Book Recommendation LO11310
Fri, 06 Dec 1996 17:57:26 -0800

I promised to send details of Clifford Nass and Byron Reeves' new book.
Here are (a) basic facts, (2) text from the book jacket, and (3) contents.
Note: I have no proprietary interests in this book; I'm just sharing the
information, because I think the book may be of interest to some on this
list and others.

Byron Reeves and Clifford Nass. The Media Equation: How People Treat
Computers, Television, and New Media Like Real People and Places.
Stanford, CA: CSLI Publications and Cambridge University Press, 1996, 303

"According to popular wisdom, humans never relate to a computer or a
television program in the same way they relate to another human being. Or
do they? In an extraordinary revision of received wisdom, Byron Reeves and
Clifford Nass demonstrate convincingly in The Media Equation that
interactions with computers, television, and new communication
technologies are identical to real social relationships and to the
navigation of real physical spaces.
"Authors Reeves and Nass present the results of numerous psychological
studies that led them to the conclusion that people treat computers,
television and new media as real people and places. Their studies show
that people are polite to computers; that they treat computers with female
voices differently than male-voiced computers; that large faces on a
screen can invade a person's body space; and that motion on a screen
affects physical responses in the same way that real-life motion does. One
of their startling conclusions is that the human brain has not evolved
quickly enough to assimilate twentieth-century technology. The authors
detail how this knowledge can help us better design and evaluate media
technologies, including computer and Internet software, television
entertainment, news and advertising, and multimedia.
"Using everyday language, the authors explain their novel ideas in a
way that will engage general readers with an interest in cutting edge
research at the intersection of psychology, communication and computer
technology. The result is that The Media Equation is an accessible summary
of exciting ideas for modern times. As Bill Gates says, Nass and Reeves
show us some 'amazing things'."


1 The Media Equation

Media and Manners
2 Politeness
3 Interpersonal Distance
4 Flattery
5 Judging Others and Ourselves

Media and Personality
6 Personality of Characters
7 Personality of Interfaces
8 Imitating Personality
9 Good versus Bad
10 Negativity
11 Arousal

Media and Social Roles
12 Specialists
13 Teammates
14 Gender
15 Voices
16 Source Orientation

Media and Form
17 Image Size
18 Fidelity
19 Synchrony
20 Motion
21 Scene Changes
22 Subliminal Images

Final Words
23 Conclusions about the Media Equation

Robert Ingram
Ingram Communications
33717 Second Street
Union City, CA 94587
(510) 475-7239


Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <> -or- <>