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Focusing on the telegraph, this study examines prominent technology innovation models and offers a new model with a diffusion phase that is specific to interpersonal communication technologies. The diffusion phase is given special attention, since not all technological innovations are alike in need and character and vary in the diffusion process. The first part of the book focuses on the origin and diffusion of new technology, highlighting the dynamic relationship between society and technology. The latter half focuses on the impact of a successful technology as it becomes embedded in the social structure.
This book chronicles how the telegraph dramatically altered society's ability to control information processing. The innovation and diffusion process for the telegraph was prototypical of subsequent communication technology innovations such as the telephone, facsimile machines, and the internet systems. Of special interest are the roles that the government, military, and businesses played in the diffusion of telegraphic technology.
|Tables and Figures|
|I||Origin and Diffusion of New Technology||3|
|II||Telegraph Innovation: Origin and Diffusion||37|
|III||Telegraph and Formal Organizations||69|
|IV||Telegraph and the Political System: Power and Politics||97|
|V||The Telegraph and Culture||117|
|VI||The Telegraph and Social Stratification||129|
|VII||The Telegraph and the Judicial System||139|
|VIII||The Telegraph, Nationalism, and the Global Community||151|