Classic Computer Magazine Archive CREATIVE COMPUTING VOL. 11, NO. 7 / JULY 1985 / PAGE 8

The second self: computers and the human spirit. (book reviews) Russ Lockwood.

The Second Self: Computers and the Human Spirit

MIT Professor Sherry Turkle, with a joint doctorate in sociology and psychology from Harvard University, explores the effects of computers on human social life and psychological development. She examines how different groups of computer users--children, professional programmers, hackers, home enthusiasts--become preoccupied with computers.

Turkle details the achievements, frustrations, and inner passions confronting the subjects of her six-year study. The extensive observations of children working at computers are especially enlightening, and for parents, especially poignant. She uncovers the many roots of computer addiction and explains the intensity of the relationship between man and machine.

Frankly, many readers will consider her discourse nothing more than repetitious drivel laced with liberal doses of ontological mumbo jumbo. That is a shame, for Turkle presents an interesting look at the computer culture, and, more importantly, a look into the motivations of the dedicated computer user.

Review Grade: C