tiny collection of information machines

over the years, i've assembled a tiny collection of information machines. these are physical devices which help people to better understand the outcomes of their actions by receiving, storing, processing, retrieving data and content.

the collected devices help me study and explain how information architectural problems were solved, which mental models were established, and how certain needs were solved again and again over the decades.

the collection is based on two axes.

  1. the focus: this is what i perceive the machine is (supposed to be) mainly used for. it has four focus areas:

    • #create - for making, ideating, producing
    • #share - for communicating, socializing, capturing social life
    • #assist - for pinging for help, ambient support
    • #play - for consuming and enjoying
  2. the connection: how is the machine connected with other machines (and people)? it has four levels:

    • #offline - data exchange through physical drives
    • #netowrk - connected through wires
    • #wifi - seamless data exchange over the air
    • #cloud - craving constantly for the cloud

the oldest machine i have so far is from the year #1969 and the newest from #2019 . most of them stem from four decades between 1980 (my birth year) and 2020.

Related terms: focus on creating the macintosh

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