[SIGCIS-Members] New collection on (IT and other) standardization: History of Technology vol 28

James Sumner james.sumner at manchester.ac.uk
Wed May 20 01:09:59 PDT 2009

Dear all

Listmembers may be interested in a new collection, edited by myself and Graeme 
Gooday (Leeds), entitled "By whose standards? Standardization, stability and 
uniformity in the history of information and electrical technologies". This is 
Volume 28 of the annual series _History of Technology_ (series editor: Ian 
Inkster), and carries a 2008 date.

Alongside several chapters on electrical engineering and related topics, there 
are pieces by Laura DeNardis (Yale) on the post-IPv4 Internet addressing 
controversy; Frank Veraart (TU Eindhoven) on Basicode, the Dutch-originated 
lingua franca for hobbyist computing, used for radio software transmission in 
1980s Europe; and myself on the roles of compatibility in the development of 
proprietary and PC-compatible microcomputer formats.

Another contributor who will be familiar to many on this list is Andrew Russell 
(Stevens), who's also worked on IP/OSI issues -- his chapter here is from rather 
earlier in his research period, looking at AT&T's drastic standards-focused 
reaction to the 'telephone slug' racket in the 1920s. Full contents below.

A preprint of the volume introduction, which is also intended as a a survey of 
relevant literature on standards and technological negotiation, is online at 

The volume's available now from Continuum. The international standing of the 
pound sterling being what it is, purchasers may be best served by going through 
the UK outlet: order page via <http://www.tinyurl.com/hot28>. The US order page 
is at <http://www.tinyurl.com/hot28us>.

All comments welcome.
Best regards

History of Technology Volume 28
Special Issue: By whose standards? Standardization, stability and uniformity in 
the history of information and electrical technologies
ISBN: 9780826438751

Table Of Contents

Introduction: does standardization make things standard?
James Sumner and Graeme Gooday

IPv6: standards controversies around the next-generation Internet
Laura DeNardis

Standardization across the boundaries of the Bell System, 1920-1938
Andrew L Russell

Morality, locality and 'standardization' in the work of British consulting 
electrical engineers, 1880-1914
Stathis Arapostathis

Perceptions, standardization and closure: the case of artificial illumination
Chris Otter

Standards and compatibility: the rise of the PC computing platform
James Sumner

Basicode: co-producing a microcomputer Esperanto
Frank Veraart

Battery birds, 'stimulighting' and 'twilighting': the ecology of standardized 
poultry technology
Karen Sayer

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