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Название: Advances in COMPUTERS. Volume 21
Автор: Yovits M.
Volume 21 of Advances in Computers continues the publication of in-depth articles of substantial current interest to computer and information science. Subjects have been included not only because of their timeliness but largely because they are expected to be of interest over a considerable period of time. The publication provides an opportunity for highly regarded experts in their fields to write review or tutorial articles covering an important aspect of their field. By its very nature Advances in Computers permits the publication of survey articles of some length and with a perspective obtained by relatively leisurely preparation. Volume 21 thus continues along and unbroken series that began in 1960. Many of the articles which have been included in the previous volumes have had a significant impact on the directions in which computer and information science and technology have developed.
Included in Volume 21 are contributions on applications, on some basic conceptual concerns, and on social and organizational impact on computing use.
In the first article, Rob Kling and Walt Scacchi point out that most scholarly and professional examinations of the social and economic repercussions of new computing developments have so far been based on a highly simplified conception of computing in social life. In these analyses the social context in which the technology is developed and used as well as the history of participating organizations are generally ignored for the sake of simplicity. It is also assumed that computing developers and users are rational decision-makers and are generally concerned with issues that are neither very short term nor based on narrow interests. These assumptions, they point out, are greatly oversimplified. Kling and Scacchi have proposed a "web model of computing" which emphasizes the way in which some focal computing resource is produced by a network of producers and consumers. According to web models, the macrostructures of broader social relations and the local infrastructure shape the kind of computer-based service made available. These are dependent upon a set of historical commitments. Computing developments are in fact complex social objects constrained by their context, infrastructure, and history.