BN.com Gift Guide

Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other

Hardcover (Print)
Rent
Rent from BN.com
$7.20
(Save 75%)
Est. Return Date: 02/23/2015
Buy Used
Buy Used from BN.com
$21.71
(Save 25%)
Item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging.
Condition: Used – Good details
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $6.38
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 77%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (36) from $6.38   
  • New (2) from $11.39   
  • Used (34) from $6.38   
Close
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any BN.com coupons and promotions
$11.39
Seller since 2008

Feedback rating:

(4573)

Condition:

New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

New
0465010210 SHIPS WITHIN 24 HOURS!! (SAME BUSINESS DAY) GREAT BOOK!!

Ships from: BAY SHORE, NY

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$11.40
Seller since 2008

Feedback rating:

(3477)

Condition: New
Brand New, not a remainder.

Ships from: San Jose, CA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Close
Sort by

Overview

Consider Facebook—it’s human contact, only easier to engage with and easier to avoid. Developing technology promises closeness. Sometimes it delivers, but much of our modern life leaves us less connected with people and more connected to simulations of them.

In Alone Together, MIT technology and society professor Sherry Turkle explores the power of our new tools and toys to dramatically alter our social lives. It’s a nuanced exploration of what we are looking for—and sacrificing—in a world of electronic companions and social networking tools, and an argument that, despite the hand-waving of today’s self-described prophets of the future, it will be the next generation who will chart the path between isolation and connectivity.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
As the digital age sparks increasing debate about what new technologies and increased connectivity are doing to our brains, comes this chilling examination of what our iPods and iPads are doing to our relationships from MIT professor Turkle (Simulation and Its Discontents). In this third in a trilogy that explores the relationship between humans and technology, Turkle argues that people are increasingly functioning without face-to-face contact. For all the talk of convenience and connection derived from texting, e-mailing, and social networking, Turkle reaffirms that what humans still instinctively need is each other, and she encounters dissatisfaction and alienation among users: teenagers whose identities are shaped not by self-exploration but by how they are perceived by the online collective, mothers who feel texting makes communicating with their children more frequent yet less substantive, Facebook users who feel shallow status updates devalue the true intimacies of friendships. Turkle 's prescient book makes a strong case that what was meant to be a way to facilitate communications has pushed people closer to their machines and further away from each other. (Jan.)
Library Journal
Clinical psychologist—and sociologist of the Internet—Turkle (social studies of science & technology, MIT; Simulation and Its Discontents) presents a cautionary tale about what she calls the "robotic moment," i.e., our current state of technological connection and societal disconnection that makes us willing to consider robots for true companionship. She tells two stories—of her research observing people with interactive but still rudimentary machines like Furbies and Paros and her experiences interviewing people (including many adolescents) about their digital habits and tools (e.g., texting, IM'ing, and Facebook). Although she tries to conclude on an up note, insisting we still have time to think carefully about how we use computers and connect to one another in an always-connected world, her tales of seniors ready to accept robot companions and kids seeking attention from parents addicted to their own Blackberries make for sobering reading. VERDICT Turkle's findings are engaging and her conclusions thoughtful (she's been called "Margaret Mead in cyberspace"). Her book is best for serious readers because those seeking livelier popular science writing might find her style here a bit dry.—Sarah Statz Cords, The Reader's Advisor Online, Middleton, WI
Kirkus Reviews

A clinical psychologist takes a critical and sometimes disturbing look at the psycho-social dangers of mixing technology and human intimacy.

Turkle (Social Studies of Science and Technology/MIT; Simulation and Its Discontents, 2009, etc.) paints a bleak picture of a robotically enhanced future in which humans become increasingly emotionally dependent on technology. As this dependency on technology for meaningful social interaction increases, writes the author, the more humans will lose their ability to have authentic and meaningful relationships with one another. Turkle begins her study with possibly the creepiest findings from her fieldwork: the ongoing development and acceptance of "sex robots," and the zeal of the scientific community's crackpots who'd like to exalt robots to equal relational status with human beings. Essentially this means programming robots as not only a sexual supplement to humans' sex lives but also as an actual surrogate for an intimate bedfellow. From there, the author's examples of a society gone technologically wild can only seem tame: children getting robotic pets and cell phones before they hit puberty; insecure teens seeking a new self through avatars and virtual-reality games; young Facebookers afraid of the permanency and nakedness of their information on the Internet. Turkle advances the notion that Internet-based social networking and communication via texting and e-mail can only lead to alienation and awkwardness when facing inevitable person-to-person confrontations. But the author is careful not to blame technology and its handlers for corrupting the easily corruptible. Many of the technological slaves that Turkle profiles are—one hopes—exceptional examples. The author seems confident that human instinct will eventually intervene and prompt us into evasive action as soon as technology begins to increasingly dominate our lives. This cautious optimism is admirable, but it can't quite brighten the dystopic pallor the book ultimately casts on the future of human relationships.

Despite the dry, clinical writing, Turkle provides potentially valuable social research.

Michiko Kakutani
…perceptive…[Turkle] has spent decades examining how people interact with computers and other devices…and by situating her findings in historical perspective, she is able to lend contextual ballast to her case studies.
—The New York Times
From the Publisher
"Turkle's prescient book makes a strong case that what was meant to be a way to facilitate communications has pushed people closer to their machines and further away from each other." —-Publishers Weekly Starred Review
The Barnes & Noble Review

From Andrew Keen's "PUBLIC AND PRIVATE" column on The Barnes & Noble Review


Sherry Turkle's new book, Alone Together, ends in mourning. In October 2009, the author, an MIT professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology, went to her local synagogue for Yiskor, the special Yom Kippur service that remembers the dead. There she heard the rabbi deliver a sermon about the importance of talking to the deceased and communicating four messages to them: "I'm sorry. Thank you. I forgive you. I love you."

"That is what makes us human, over time, over distance," Turkle says of our ability to talk sincerely to other human beings, whether they belong to our past or our present. Our "knowledge of mortality" and our "experience of the life cycle" is conveyed in just such simple messages: "I'm sorry. Thank you. I forgive you. I love you." They are the most intimate words we can say to another. Without them, she suggests, we are machines akin to the robots in Philip K. Dick's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, which imagines a future in which robots and humans are indistinguishable.

Dick's classic story was adapted for the movies by Ridley Scott as Blade Runner. But in this age of Facebook, Twitter and increasingly "intelligent" robots with names like Kismet and Paro, Turkle tells us, Blade Runner has been adapted by all of us: we are being herded toward what she ominously calls "the robotic moment", a place in which we will rely on machines to shape our regret, gratitude, forgiveness, and love.

"People disappoint; robots will not" -- so she explains the great seduction of devices that behave like human beings. Today, she warns us, we are becoming so "immersed in technology that we ignore what we know about life." Indeed, this epochal robotic moment may have already arrived while an increasingly wired human race has been too busy texting, tweeting and friending to notice.

As Alone Together, based on interviews with hundreds of subjects over 15 years of research, illustrates, this ignorance about the creeping mechanical translation of our human instincts is afflicting old and young alike. When Turkle introduces 76-year old Andy to "My Real Baby", a simulated human infant, he is delighted: "Now I have something to do when I have nothing to do," Andy confesses. Seven-year-old Brooke yearns to talk to a robot called Cog so that she become the machine's dedicated tutor. And Turkle considers the robot-makers, too -- from Norbert Weiner, the inventor of cybernetics who believed it was "conceptually possible" to send a person over an electric wire, to Aaron Edsinger, the inventor of a device called "Domo" which, according to Turkle, "really can have a conversation."

But is the nature of conversation itself being altered by its new forms?  Turkle talks to high school students who are sending 6,000 text messages a day, thereby predicating their whole identity on electronic communications. "If Facebook were deleted, I'd be deleted," one 16-year-old student confesses to Turkle. Such fascination with social media is fostering what Turkle -- a psychoanalytically trained psychologist -- calls a "hyper-otherdirectedness" in its proponents, a "collaborative self" that no longer has the ability to be alone and privately reflect on its emotions.

As an elegy for the death of intimacy, Alone Together -- for all its noble intentions -- fails, for the most part, to establish a really close relationship with the reader, in part because of its medium. The 348-page, richly footnoted tome has the form of a conventional academic book, but its message belongs to a deeply layered piece of philosophy or even fiction. So while I loved Turkle's introduction, her conclusion, and, in particular, her deeply moving epilogue, the rest of the occasionally repetitive and unstructured narrative could have done with a bit more rabbi and a bit less academic psychologist.

But that's a quibble. Alone Together is a major empirical and theoretical work that illuminates the crisis of humanity at the dawn of the digital century. Turkle has laid down a gauntlet for the rest of us to pick up. One can only hope that rabbis, novelists, and other engineers of the human soul will do so, translating Turkle's vitally important message into more urgent and intimate forms.




Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780465010219
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 1/11/2011
  • Pages: 384
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Sherry Turkle is the Abby Rockefeller Mauzé Professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology at MIT. She is frequently interviewed in Time, Newsweek, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal, on NBC News, and more. She lives in Boston, Massachusetts.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Author's Note: Turning Points ix

Introduction: Alone Together 1

Part 1 The Robotic Moment: In Solitude, New Intimacies

1 Nearest Neighbors 23

2 Alive Enough 35

3 True Companions 53

4 Enchantment 67

5 Complicities 83

6 Love's Labor Lost 103

7 Communion 127

Part 2 Networked: In Intimacy, New Solitudes

8 Always On 151

9 Growing Up Tethered 171

10 No Need to Call 187

11 Reduction and Betrayal 211

12 True Confessions 229

13 Anxiety 241

14 The Nostalgia of the Young 265

Conclusion: Necessary Conversations 279

Epilogue: The Letter 297

Notes 307

Index 349

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 35 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(13)

4 Star

(9)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(4)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 37 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 9, 2011

    Every parent should read this

    This is an intelligent, readable analysis of how our technology (texting, IM, e-mail, etc.) is shaping our human interactions. The chapters on how children and teenagers are affected are particularly fascinating and often sad. While this isn't "lite" reading, it's far from being a boring textbook and more than worth the time. I wish parents and teachers as well as children and caregivers of the elderly everywhere would take the time to read this and consider the broader implications of her research.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 14, 2012

    highly recommend

    It is a wake-up call for us parents of this generation of technology users. It puts it out there for us to see - the research of what is happening to our kids and how they connect to the world. It is helpful to see the history of research in this area and be able to put it to good use. Obviously, it is not the only factor in how our kids relate to others but it is an eye-opener. This was recommended to me and I'm glad I bought it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2011

    Important book

    Turkel again delivers an accessible book of enduring value. The exploration of what it is to be human in the age of increasingly intelligent machines is important for all of us. Turkel helps us down that road with her insightful research and accessible writing stlye.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Ignoring Life

    Sherry Turkle, the well-known author of The Second Self (1984) and Life on the Screen (1995), has given us another key work in Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other (New York: Basic Books, 2011). In her current book she focuses on individuals from 5 to 20 years of age, discerning how this group often rely on technology to fill in voids in their relationships. While we have seen some amazing achievements with the use of robots and other technologies to help kids and senior citizens, Turkle also argues that our use makes us change in certain profound ways. While we turn to technology, as well, to help save us time, the technology often makes us busier. "It is easy to become so immersed in technology that we ignore what we know about life" (p. 101), and we apply this notion to many aspects of our lives.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 14, 2012

    Fascinating - a -very- worthwhile read.

    I'd first borrowed this book from our public library. About 1/3 through, I realized I would want my own copy. It's that good.

    I've highlighted (thank you, nook) passages all over the place. It's a worthwhile look at how the technology that was to have given us more free time has actually taken more of it. How trends are pulling toward situations where we are all at the same social setting (meeting, dinner table, city park) with our own connected gadget(s), each of us alone, but together.

    And it is also about how we use facebook, IM, texting to become more abbreviated with each other, sharing each other with other friends/texts/twitters/apps so that it is becoming increasingly rare where anyone has all of another's attention.

    And finally, it is about the trend toward social robots. So far, just toys, but toys programmed to pull out an emotional response from the user. So that the goal amongst some roboticists is to create a "companion" robot to, say, help the elderly not merely by doing things to help them, but by performing as a companion: someone or something to talk to or share with. But, Turkle suggests, is it "sharing" if there is no-body there, merely a program?

    I found her observations fascinating, even if I didn't always agree with her summations.

    I also found it worth sharing, both in social mediums and in conversation (with people, not robots).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 11, 2014

    Sherry Turkle should be captured in a bottle and put in a very s

    Sherry Turkle should be captured in a bottle and put in a very safe place. This book is fabulous. It answers questions that I've had for the past decade, and it introduced me to the whole world of social media--both its upsides and considerable downsides. She is a moral voice for humanity as it tries to integrate high technology into its identity without damaging or reducing the elements that have always made us uniquely human. I would recommend this book to everyone who thinks for him/herself.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 25, 2013

    This book does an interesting job of showing how our interaction

    This book does an interesting job of showing how our interactions with others are modified by the technological means we use to connect.  It's written in a manner that is both accessible and yet intelligent.   Definitely makes you wonder about the tradeoffs involved in the so'-called convenience in digital progress.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Connected yet disconnected

    Book brought me up to date @ many electronic gadgets.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 16, 2011

    And Concerned Parents Should Just Say No

    Last summer I took a week-long vacation to a place with limited wireless access. The best thing about that week was not hearing the chirp of a "smart" phone even once! As excellent as this book is, I suspect (nay, even fervently hope) that the twisted world of obsessively detached communication among the young that Ms. Turkle describes is at best a regional phenomenon, most common among households in urban areas and blessed with more money than sense. If there's one thing missing from this book, it's some nationwide statistics.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 7, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 6, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 37 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)