Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Gender and Computers

In Devon they often give gender to objects and ships are always considered women. A lot of European languages still have genders and so objects have gender. Feenberg talks about the problems of text and isolation and the lack of relationship in CMC but does the gender you associate with technology make a difference to how friendly you find using that technology?
A friend was playing online Scrabble - they are German and she thinks of the computer as a man that she wants to show that she is cleverer than. This got me to thinking about the gender I give computers. I have always felt that my computer was female. I always want to get it to cooperate and to calculate the right solution for me. I always want my programs to work without errors. If I gave my computer a voice like those in science-fiction it would definitely be female. A calm voice, firm but not motherly a youthful independent voice.
It was just an odd thought but we all create voices in our head for thinking.

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