Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Art and Design Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

PDF

History

2015

Journal

Yale University

Articles 1 - 1 of 1

Full-Text Articles in Art and Design

The Half-Life & After-Life Of New Media, Nancy Austin Nov 2015

The Half-Life & After-Life Of New Media, Nancy Austin

Journal of Contemporary Archival Studies

It is fitting to think of the half-life of new media using the time-based metaphor of radioactive decay. As a metaphor, an object’s half-life can be a useful way to talk about the potent technological modernity of new media and, like Walter Benjamin’s well-known notion of the aura, call attention to an object’s performativity. However, Benjamin’s aura remains a constant reminder of irrevocable originality whereas remarking on half-life references a quality that changes over time. But what happens after the rhetorical impact of being new has run its course? What is the life expectancy of once-new ...