Charismatic Technology

  • Morgan G. Ames Intel Science and Technology Center for Social Computing University of California, Irvine
Keywords: Charisma, childhood, education, history of technology, ideology, One Laptop per Child, religion, science and technology studies, technological determinism, utopianism

Abstract

To explain the uncanny holding power that some technologies seem to have, this paper presents a theory of charisma as attached to technology. It uses the One Laptop per Child project as a case study for exploring the features, benefits, and pitfalls of charisma. It then contextualizes OLPC’s charismatic power in the historical arc of other charismatic technologies, highlighting the enduring nature of charisma and the common themes on which the charisma of a century of technological progress rests. In closing, it discusses how scholars and practitioners in human-computer interaction might use the concept of charismatic technology in their own work. 

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Published
2015-10-05
How to Cite
Ames, M. (2015). Charismatic Technology. Aarhus Series on Human Centered Computing, 1(1), 12. https://doi.org/10.7146/aahcc.v1i1.21199
Section
Charismatic Materiality