My current book project, Treasures of Technology: Miniaturization and Miniatures, focuses on the cultural impact of the miniaturization of digital network devices, while taking into account that miniaturization is not a unique attribute of new media. Earlier media forms have also taken shape as miniatures. One of the key cultural processes examined is the interconnection between scale and globalization. As users engage with small-tech devices, they may experience sensations of intimacy with, possession of, or control over the global digital data that they obtain through the networked screens of their diminutive gadgets. These affects in turn impact the dissemination of global information throughout the network. Points of connection and rupture can be drawn between the affects elicited by the miniature content disseminated today on the tiny screens of small-tech network devices and the sensations triggered by the media miniatures of previous centuries. For example, my research on the link between the stereoscope and the miniature, published in Early Popular Visual Culture, examines the relation between stereoscopy and miniaturization. This exploration integrates a theoretical, textual and historical analysis of stereographic representations of cities from around the world, including New York and Constantinople (Istanbul). Related research has also been published in the International Journal of Cultural Studies and in NMEDIAC: The Journal of New Media and Culture.

This forthcoming book provides a theoretical, social, cultural and technical history of the connection between miniaturization and media from which the contemporary miniaturizing of information through small-tech mobile devices can be approached.

The Bowery

©Sheenagh Pietrobruno