chapter  1
Introduction
ByCarl J. Couch, Shing-Ling S. Chen
Pages 20

The book offers the discussion of the development of information technologies is presented more or less as a chronology. It clears that the continuation of human life is contingent on human beings preserving and sharing symbolic information. Therefore, changes in how people preserve and share information must have profound consequences. All communication has a process dimension, but not all information is dynamic. Symbolic information emerges from social encounters wherein people align their actions with one another as they confront and are confronted by an environment. The term information technologies is used here, instead of media, in recognition that significant modifications in information management do not always involve mass communication. The development of each information technology has contributed to transformations of the human condition. In recent years, several communication theorists have offered a framework for analysis of information technologies that proceeds as if information technologies were developed and used in social vacuum.