A01 - Digital Network Technologies Between Specialization and Generalization
This project reconstructs how digital network technologies emerge due to infrastructural dynamics in economic constellations. In particular, we address the cooperative production of media technologies as well as their protocols, agencies, and labor divisions by looking into two exemplary fields: (a) the development of digital platform technologies for credit cards and electronic payment systems and (b) audiovisual transmission and compression standards, especially in video conference systems and multimedia formats. We conceptualize digital network technologies as 'media of cooperation' that emerge from media practices. The project aims to show that the Internet as a general purpose technology evolved from special purpose applications, each of which are shaped by specific spatial, economic, institutional, and juridical affordances and constraints.