Cover

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pp. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 2-7

Contents

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pp. vii-8

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Introduction: The Interface

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pp. 1-16

In February 1956, the president of the International Business Machines (IBM) Corporation, Thomas Watson Jr. (1914–93), hired the industrial designer and architect Eliot F. Noyes (1910–77). Given the title “consultant director of design,” Noyes was charged with entirely reinventing IBM’s corporate image, ...

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Chapter One: Eliot Noyes, Paul Rand, and the Beginnings of the IBM Design Program

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pp. 17-58

In describing the genesis of the IBM Design Program, as Reyner Banham suggests, one is indeed dealing with both chickens and eggs. This “uncommon relationship” was, in the 1940s and early 1950s, still a rapidly changing one, and the establishment of the even more unusual relationship between Eliot Noyes and IBM marked yet another shift. ...

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Chapter Two: The Architecture of the Computer

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pp. 59-100

It is a truism in the history of science and technology that the computer, like any technology, was invented at multiple times and in many places, by any number of different people; accordingly, the contemporary historian of science and technology has any number of methodological responses to this problem immediately to hand.1 ...

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Chapter Three: IBM Architecture: The Multinational Counterenvironment

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pp. 101-160

IBM had little in the way of an organized administrative strategy for its real estate and building development prior to Noyes’s intervention. Under Watson Sr. factories, office buildings, and storefronts alike were often simply leased from developers on a long-term basis, and those buildings that IBM did own were limited to those that housed its central administrative apparatus, ...

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Chapter Four: Naturalizing the Computer: IBM Spectacles

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pp. 161-216

The strategic deployment of architectural installations discussed in the last chapter had a number of consequences for life and knowledge outside of IBM. As early as the beginning of the design consultancy in 1956, Noyes and his fellow advisors (Nelson and Eames in particular) began to work systematically toward a solution ...

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Conclusion: Virtual Paradoxes

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pp. 217-227

Now, with an overview, if not of the entirety, then at least of a reasonable cross-section of the IBM Design Program, several questions arise. First, and most generally: to what extent was Noyes’s and IBM’s attempt to redesign design—to reformulate design, previously conceived as an authorial act in one or another medium, ...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. 228-230

I am extremely grateful to Paul Lascewicz, Dawn Stanford, and the staff at the IBM Corporate Archives in Somers, New York. Without their efforts in opening up the rich collections there to me, and without their generous help at each stage in my research and preparation of the manuscript, this book would never have been written. ...

Notes

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pp. 231-267

Index

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pp. 268-278

About the Author

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pp. 288-288

Image Plates

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pp. 289-296