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Being Multisituated : Characterizing laptoping in networked situations

Doctoral thesis
Authors Tomas Lindroth
Date of public defense 2015-04-17
ISBN 978-91-982069-2-0
Publication year 2015
Published at Department of Applied Information Technology (GU)
Language en
Keywords laptoping, laptoper, interaction order, actor-network theory, networked situation, multisituation
Subject categories Computer and Information Science


During the last 30 years mobile IT has gone from being an exotic ingredient to an everyday artifact. This thesis presents an ethnographic study of laptop use in a university setting. The thesis concludes that it is no longer enough to describe the use of portable IT as an activity in its own right, i.e. using a laptop computer as an activity similar to reading a book or writing an essay. Additionally, describing a person as merely a user of digital technology fails to capture the intervowenness between the technology, situation, person and other actors. In order to find more nuanced answers about laptop use the thesis discuss what characterize the use of laptops in everyday life. With support from Actor-Network Theory, the Interaction Order and Experiential computing the thesis explores the hybrid combination of a person-laptop. The contribution is a framework of the driving forces behind the laptoper’s everyday activities. Additionally a model of the networked situation is presented, that uncovers the effects of the laptoper over time, that is, the laptoping process. The contribution is a framework with key characteristics and typified interactions where the multisituated and network dimensions are understood as fundamental elements of hybrid interaction.

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