University of Twente Student Theses


To the screens themselves! : a phenomenological approach to understanding interactive screens

Zeinstra, M. (2009) To the screens themselves! : a phenomenological approach to understanding interactive screens.

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Abstract:Screens are everywhere and fulfill an ever larger percentage of our daily interactions with technology. However, screens themselves are hardly ever the subject of inquiry. This thesis asks what screens are and who we can research their interactions with humans and society. By using and commenting on the work of Lev Manovich, a trichotomy of static, dynamic, and interactive screens is developed using physical characteristics of screens. Static screens can be seen as pictures in paintings or posters, dynamic screens have moving images and force an observer to be the passenger of the screen, and interactive screens give control to their users by enabling them to alter the content of the screen. Interactive screens are chosen as a main focus of this thesis, because they present the newest iteration of screens and are therefore the least researched. The tradition and thoughts of phenomenology is chosen to research the interactive screens. The main task phenomenology gives itself is to research the structures of human consciousness using a first person perspective. By inquiring into how screens are experienced using methodologies of phenomenology we can describe what screens are to us. Two distinct branches of phenomenology are chosen to give a full perspective within the tradition. Lucas Introna and Fernando Ilharco provide a traditional transcendental, yet existential, phenomenology of screens. Don Ihde provides a global postphenomenological approach to technology.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:08 philosophy
Programme:Philosophy of Science, Technology and Society MSc (60024)
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