Written by Peter Lunenfeld, The Secret War Between Downloading and Uploading is a book about using digital technologies to shift us from a consumption to a production model. After half a century of television-conditioned consumption/downloading, Lunenfeld tells us, we now find ourselves with a vast new infrastructure for uploading. We simply need to find the will to make the best of it.
The computer, writes Peter Lunenfeld, is the twenty-first century’s culture machine. It is a dream device, serving as the mode of production, the means of distribution, and the site of reception. We haven’t quite achieved the flying cars and robot butlers of futurist fantasies, but we do have a machine that can function as a typewriter and a printing press, a paintbrush and a gallery, a piano and a radio, the mail as well as the mail carrier. But, warns Lunenfeld, we should temper our celebration with caution; we are engaged in a secret war between downloading and uploading–between passive consumption and active creation–and the outcome will shape our collective futures.
Together with the book release, iPad application is available for download from the AppStore. Developed by Chandler McWilliams with input from Peter Lunenfeld, GenText is an interactive text application that allows readers to access arguments at three levels – short abstract, single screen synopsis, and full selection – with the dynamic interaction offered by pinching and reverse pinching literalizing the metaphor of “zooming” between the levels in a text.