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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Berichte zur Wissenschaftsgeschichte, June 2014, Vol.37(2), pp.179-180
    Subject(s): Sciences (General);
    ISSN: 0170-6233
    E-ISSN: 1522-2365
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: communication +1, 01 September 2014, Vol.3, pp.1-28
    Description: This paper addresses questions regarding the prospering field of Bionik in Germany. Its starting point is the wide spread assumption that universal functional principles exist in nature and that these ‘solutions’ can be transferred into technological objects. Accordingly, advocates of Bionik herald the advent of a better world with more sustainable and efficient products of engineering. The so-called ‘functional surfaces’ occupy a special place within this contemporary version of biomimesis. Shark-skin-inspired swim suits, self-cleaning façade paints with lotus effect or drag reducing Dolphin-Skins for aircraft-wings are expected to improve the quality of life for everyone. It seems that skin and shell of living systems return as revenants to our technological world and live their afterlives as lively surfaces of everyday objects. This paper argues however, that understanding this attention to ‘natural engineering solutions’ in contemporary Bionik, one needs to focus on a different kind of afterlife. For baring the historic-epistemological roots allows fathoming direct connections to two widely influential historical concepts within the history of science in the 20th century: Biotechnik, a very popular bio-philosophical concept from the Weimar Republic of the 1920s and Bionics, an in many ways similar endeavor that emerged during the second wave of Cybernetics in the USA from around 1960. Both historical concepts share a certain proximity to a distinct holistic-systemic style of thinking that emerged during the 20th century and still resonates with the movement of Bionik in contemporary Germany. Based on the example of the lotus effect, I want to address three aspects of the afterlife of this holistic-systemic heritage in contemporary Bionik. First, the assumption that the best engineering solutions can be found in nature conceals the specific discursive and non-discursive complexity that forms the basis of all technological objects. Second, the holistic-systemic heritage of Bionik directly correlates with its epistemological bias towards visual evidence and its enthusiasm for ‘functional surfaces’. Third, the rhetoric of Bionik paradoxically oscillates between a counter-modern demotion of human creativity and autonomy and a fascination for modern scientific instruments and practices.
    Subject(s): Epistemology ; Film and Media Studies ; History of Science, Technology, and Medicine ; Biotechnik ; Biotechnics ; Cybernetics ; Bionics ; Bionik ; Biological Computing ; Lotus Effect ; Numarete ; Raoul Francé ; Jack Steele ; Heinz Von Foerster ; Wilhelm Barthlott ; Journalism & Communications
    ISSN: 2380-6109
    E-ISSN: 2380-6109
    Source: Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)
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  • 3
    Language: English
    In: Canadian Journal of Communication, 2017, Vol.42(3), pp.467-484
    Description: When German media theory (GMT) took shape in the early 1980s it was influenced by cybernetic concepts; however, it eventually discovered the history of cybernetics as an object of research. The article follows the assumption that GMT's double reference to cybernetics must be characterized as the result of both a shared epistemology and a specific discursive constellation. After contrasting McCulloch's concept of a synthetic physiological a priori and Kittler's concept of a technological a priori it examines how GMT adopted concepts from cybernetics, and how its members eventually became fascinated by the history of cybernetics. The article concludes that the double reference to cybernetics explains its special role in GMT, while raising problems for GMT's current fascination with cybernetics.
    Subject(s): Young, Geoffrey ; Switzerland ; United Kingdom–UK ; Von Foerster, Heinz ; Cultural Studies ; Physiology ; Bats ; History ; Cybernetics ; Theory ; Essays ; Epistemology ; Ghettos ; Epistemology ; Consciousness ; Cybernetics ; Bats ; Anatomical Systems ; Cybernetics
    ISSN: 07053657
    E-ISSN: 14996642
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  • 4
    Language: German
    In: Berichte zur Wissenschaftsgeschichte, March 2010, Vol.33(1), pp.108-109
    Subject(s): Sciences (General);
    ISSN: 0170-6233
    E-ISSN: 1522-2365
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  • 5
    Article
    Article
    2017
    ISSN: 1359-1355 
    In: Architectural Research Quarterly, 2017, Vol.21(1), pp.33-44
    Description: During late modernism, the promise of, not only vaguely, but also precisely predicting the future had acquired enormous prestige. When evoked, this predictive project lent power, legitimacy, and a cohesive identity to endeavours in almost any realm of society and culture – including the discipline of architecture. In particular, in cybernetics, seen as a means of regulating and controlling complex systems, these optimistic ideas of ‘mastering the big picture’ flourished. Under the heading of ‘Cybernetics: Circular Casual, and Feedback Mechanisms in Biological and Social Systems’, the umbrella organisation Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation hosted ten conferences on this very topic between 1946 and 1951. These events, known as the Macy Conferences, provided a forum for the collation and presentation of existing research, and in retrospect can be seen to have been the most important ‘get-together’ of their kind, judged in relation to subsequent crucial findings in the history of science after the Cold War. Based upon the theoretical framework of the terms of ‘information’, ‘feedback’, and ‘analog/digital’, they searched for that single universal theory of regulation and control – which they claimed might be applied to any species, machine, economic or psychological process, aesthetic or sociological phenomenon. As a consequence, cybernetics transformed into a tool to describe and explain methodologies not only in its own core knowledge/ research area, but became seen as a subject capable of giving answers to societal questions of any kind. In doing so, cybernetics linked new scientific-technical methods with all issues of social relevance.
    Subject(s): Theory
    ISSN: 1359-1355
    E-ISSN: 1474-0516
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  • 6
    Article
    Article
    2018
    ISSN: 0170-6233 
    Language: German
    In: Berichte zur Wissenschaftsgeschichte, December 2018, Vol.41(4), pp.403-408
    Description: . In the course of the great success of theory programs and the funding of young researchers within media studies and the history of science over the past 15 years, a generation of scholars has emerged (including the authors of this article) who have been genuinely trained in approaching interdisciplinary...
    Subject(s): History Of Science ; Media Studies ; Interdisciplinary Methods ; History Of Technology ; Wissenschaftsgeschichte ; Medienwissenschaft ; Interdisziplinäre Methoden ; Technikgeschichte
    ISSN: 0170-6233
    E-ISSN: 1522-2365
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  • 7
    Article
    Article
    2011
    ISSN: 1869-1722 
    Language: German
    In: Zeitschrift für Medienwissenschaft, 05/2011, Vol.4(1), pp.58-70
    ISSN: 1869-1722
    Source: CrossRef
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  • 8
    In: Zeitschrift für Medienwissenschaft, 03/01/2018, Vol.10(18, 1/2018), pp.98-110
    E-ISSN: 2296-4126
    Source: CrossRef
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  • 9
    Language: German
    Description: Der Zauber der Medien speist sich aus ihrem Geheimnis: Den Usern von heute sind Laptop, Smartphone oder Tablet eine Blackbox, die ihre Sinne im Bann hält und die Techniktricks im Inneren hinter einer opaken Oberfläche verbirgt. Doch solche Verzauberung ist nicht neu. Umihr auf die Spur zu kommen, nähert sich dieses Buch der Mediengeschichte der Zauberei an der Schwelle zwischen magischem Moment und Ent-Täuschung. Nicht seltenfolgt einer geradezu übernatürlich wirkenden Zaubervorführung die wissenschaftliche Erklärung und Offenlegung ihrer Tricks. Ein solcher Akt der Entzauberung mag zwar magische Momente als faulen Zauber demaskieren. Er rückt dafür jedoch die Technologien der Täuschung ins Rampenlicht: Erst die Ausnutzung physikalischer Gesetze, das Konstruieren mechanischer Zauberapparate und das Spiel mit der Wahrnehmung der Zuschauer machen deren ,Verzauberung’ möglich. Sie erlaubt, die Frage nach Wissen, dem medialen Zugriff auf unsere Sinne und dem sinnlichen Zugriff auf unsere Welt erneut zu stellen.
    Subject(s): Talking Head ; Spiritismus ; Techniktricks ; Technikgeschichte ; Tricktechnik ; Trick Photography ; Zauberhandbuch ; Zauberei ; Mediengeschichte ; Informationsgesellschaft ; Ubiquitous Computing
    ISBN: 9783957960801
    ISBN: 9783957960812
    Source: DOAB (OAPEN Foundation)
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  • 10
    Language: English
    Subject(s): Natural Sciences ; Physical Sciences ; Naturvetenskap ; Fysik ; Fristående Kurs ; Freestanding Course
    Source: Uppsala University Library
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