If you are interested in democracy and its future, you’d better understand computers.
--Ted Nelson

  MIT Media Lab

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MIT Media Laboratory

MIT department studying media technology, begun in 1985. It has a reputation for very cool toys that are of perhaps limited scientific or commercial value. Nicholas Negroponte and Jerome Wiesner conceived of the Media Lab in 1980 as an outgrowth of the MIT Architecture Machine Group. It receives nearly all of its funding from corporations, which in return get special tours of the research projects.

Both Marvin Minsky and Seymour Papert moved much of their research focus to the Media Lab; they are now both emeritus professors.

The Lab was made famous by Stewart Brand's 1987 book, The Media Lab: Inventing the Future at MIT (New York: Viking Penguin Inc.).

Current faculty includes Papert protegés Mitch Resnick and David Cavallo as well as

  • Dan Ariely
  • Walter Bender
  • Stephen Benton (holography)
  • Michael Best
  • Bruce Blumberg (artificial life; Apple, NeXT, Pattie Maes)
  • V. Michael Bove, Jr.
  • Cynthia Breazeal
  • Justine Cassell
  • Ike Chuang
  • Chris Csikszentmihályi
  • Glorianna Davenport
  • Judith Donath
  • Neil Gershenfeld
  • Hiroshi Ishii
  • Joe Jacobson
  • Kent Larson
  • Henry Lieberman
  • Andrew Lippman
  • Tod Machover
  • John Maeda
  • Pattie Maes (on leave)
  • Scott Manalis
  • Bakhtiar Mikhak
  • William Mitchell
  • Nicholas Negroponte
  • Joe Paradiso
  • Sandy Pentland
  • Roz Picard
  • Deb Roy
  • Christopher Schmandt
  • Ted Selker
  • Barry Vercoe

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