Anthony J. Pennings, PhD

WRITINGS ON DIGITAL STRATEGIES, ICT ECONOMICS, AND GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS

The Expanse: Cyberpunk in Space

The 4 Cs of Cyberpunk is a framework to conduct a genre inquiry and build knowledge by addressing the categories and letting them discipline the investigation. I’ve been using it more to develop a socio-technical analysis develop a socio-technical analysis of various tech products in areas such as AI, energy, biochemistry, nanotechnology, robotics, and even space travel. Still, in this case, I’m using it for traditional genre analysis to get a sense of where science fiction is guiding our imagination. What is it saying about who we are and where we are heading as a civilization?

Zeihan’s Global Prognostics and Sustainable Development, Part I

This post looks at Zeihan’s hypotheses and their implications for sustainable development, roughly defined by the United Nations Brundtland Commission as meeting the needs of the present, without compromising future generations. While one might say that all countries in the world are undergoing a transition to sustainable development, countries have different circumstances and develop development and economic policies and solutions differently.

Oliver Stone’s Platoon: Jesus Christ Superstar vs. the Marlboro Man

In Oliver Stone’s award-winning film, Platoon (1986), Charlie Sheen plays Chris Taylor, a “coming of age” infantry soldier trying to reconcile his identity between the influences of two sergeants in his US Army platoon. I refer to these two men and the contrasting themes they represent as “Jesus Christ Superstar” vs. “the Marlboro Man.”

Digital Disruption in the Film Industry – Gains and Losses – Part 1: The Camera

In this post I introduce some of the issues in the move to digital cameras, within the context of disruptive innovation theory. The transition, which has taken decades, is worth examining through the lens Clay Christensen provides through his theory of innovative disruption. His theory examines how technology can start out “under the radar” with an inferior and cheaper version that is continuously improved until it disrupts a major industry.

Four Futures: One Humanity

This post looks at a few of my favorite futurists and a book I recently found intriguing that presented four visions of the future.

The Cyberpunk Genre as Social and Technological Analysis

I once taught a Freshman seminar at New York University in Information System Management (ISM). The course was introductory and only two credits, so I felt we needed a focused yet comprehensive set of analytical concepts to shape our discussions and assignments about ISM in the modern world. I decided to use the “cyberpunk” genre […]

How Schindler Used the List

Innovators in bureaucracy and population technology, the Germans were leaders in the use of telegraph and teletype communications to control their national administrators and armies. By the turn of the century, the Germans had transformed British “political arithmetic” into “statistics” (state-istics), numerical techniques in the service of State and population administration. They used the tabulating machines and punch cards designed for the US census to identify and control the population. These techniques were taken up by the SS in their management of the Final Solution.

Robin Williams, Dead Poets, and Symbolic Investments in the Virtual Classroom

Like most of us, I was saddened by the loss of Emmy, Grammy, and Golden Globe winning actor Robin Williams. Here is an excerpt from one of my PhD essays, “Dead Poets and the Lawnmower Man,” that drew on the movie, The Dead Poets Society and his excellent performance to investigate virtual reality as an […]

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  • About Me

    Professor at State University of New York (SUNY) Korea since 2016. Moved to Austin, Texas in August 2012 to join the Digital Media Management program at St. Edwards University. Spent the previous decade on the faculty at New York University teaching and researching information systems, digital economics, and strategic communications.

    You can reach me at:

    apennings70@gmail.com
    anthony.pennings@sunykorea.ac.kr

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    The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of my employers, past or present.