The Control Revolution Online is a student project website dedicated to late author James R. Beniger’s book entitled The Control Revolution: Technological and. Beniger, J. R. (). The Control Revolution: Technological and Economic Origins of the Information Society,. Cambridge, MA, Harvard University Press. Communication and the. Control Revolution. James R. Beniger. In , Henry Crowell invented breakfast. He did not, of course, pio neer the practice?which.

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Beniger traces the origin of the Information Society to major economic and business crises of the past century. In the United States, applications of steam power in the early s brought veniger dramatic rise in the speed, volume, and complexity of industrial processes, making them difficult to control.

By means of rationalization it is possible to maintain a large-scale, complex social systems that would be overwhelmed by a rising tide of information they could not process were it necessary to goven by particularistic considerations of family and kin that characterize preindustrial societies. Kirsten rated it beinger liked it Oct 19, Beniger traces the origin of the Information Society to major economic and business crises of th Why do we find ourselves living in an Information Revooution Subscribe to receive information about forthcoming books, seasonal catalogs, and more, in newsletters tailored to your interests.

The book is impressive not only for the breadth of its scholarship but also for the subtlety and force of its argument. It would make sense if the US was the center of the Control Revolution, but it would be good to get more of an explanation as to why. Now does that tell revolutuon anything? Multiple register cumulating calculator. The Information Society has not resulted from recent changes, as we have seen, but rather from increases in the speed of material processing and of flows through the material economy that began more than a century ago.

Week 10 Reading for Benigerr of Computing and Communication. Beniger is hard to follow at times as he does not do a very clean job of organizing his arguments.


Just as the Industrial Revolution marked an historical discontinuity in the ability to harness energy, the Control Revolution marks a similarly dramatic leap in our ability to exploit information.

The Control Revolution: Technological and Economic Origins of the Information Society

He defines three problems for control: Just couldn’t wade through this one. In terms of the magnitude and pervasiveness of its impact upon revoluyion, intellectual and cultural no less than material, the Control Revolution appears to be as important to the history of this century as the Industrial Revolution was to the last. Jul 09, Ron Davison rated it it was amazing. His case studies are fascinating – he makes Quaker Oats seem exotic, and the origins of WalMart store layout seem Freudian.

It will be welcomed by sociologists, economists and historians of science and technology.

Quality control course, text. I should have bought him his own copy as I would not have lost my extensive margin notes. Although all human societies have depended on hunting and gathering, agriculture, or the processing of matter and energy to sustain themselves, such material processing, it would seem, has begun to be eclipsed tye relative importance by the processing of information.

As revolktion saw in Chapter 7, three forces seem to sustain its development.

The Control Revolution – Wikipedia

As the crisis of control spread through the material economy, it inspired a continuing stream of innovations in control technology. Given that a revolution in control did begin in response to a crisis generated by the Industrial Revklution, why have the technologies of information processing, preprocessing, programming, and revilution played such a major part in the Control Revolution?

In short, the information revolution capital I, capital R started long before we made it electronic.

Steve rated it it was amazing Jun 02, Scores of problems arose: And why is this change recent—or is it? I was surprised to find this almost entirely left out of his discussion on tradition to rationality. Similarly, microprocessing and computing technology, contrary to currently fashionable opinion, do not represent a new force only recently unleashed on an unprepared society but merely the most recent installment in the continuing development of the Control Revolution.


Information processing is essential to all purposive activity, which is by definition goal directed and must therefore involve the continual comparison of current states to future goals. He even describes technology as a natural extension of man, extending functions such as respiration or memory. ONLY SINCE World War II have the industrial economies of the United States, Canada, Western Europe, and Japan appeared to give way to information societies, so named because the bulk of their revolutionn force engages in informational activities and the wealth thus generated comes increasingly from informational goods and services.

Bought a third copy. Tristan Johnson rated it really liked it Dec 31, He uses the example of traffic control again to show how meaning is programmed into social interaction.

Technology is the external intension of the natural process. He shows that the answers to our questions concerning information society lie in physical existence, and that bureaucracy, and thus Technology, is a product of society, which is a product of our very emergence from inorganic dust.

There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Matthew Roche rated it really liked it Aug 10, As we have seen, what began as a crisis of safety on the railroads in the early s hit distribution in the s, production in the late s, and marketing and the control of consumption in the early s. Life itself implies purposive activity and hence control, as we found in Chapter 2, in national economies no less than in individual organisms. Along the way he touches on many fascinating topics: Despite scores of technical and popular books and articles documenting the advent of the Information Society no one seems to have even raised, much less answered, these crucial questions.