I have been reading Mizuko Ito's new edited collection "Personal, portable, pedestrian: Mobile phones in Japanese life" (edited with Daisuke Okabe and Misa Matsuda).
The first paragraph of Mizuko's introduction notes:
In contrast to the cellular phone of the United States (defined by technical infrastructure), and the mobile of the United Kingdom (defined by the untethering from fixed location) (Kotamraju and Wakeford 2002), the Japanese term keitai (roughly translated, "something you carry with you") references a somewhat different set of dimentions. A keitai is not so mcuh about a new technical capability or freedom of motion but about a snug and intimate technosocial tethering, a personal devide supporting communications that are a constant, lightweight, and mundane presence in everyday life" (2005, p. 1).
Sounds pretty exciting doesn't it? I am loving it!!
Given that mobile technologies are becoming so embedded in everyday life, this is an important piece of work that foregrounds the ways in which technologies are taken up in the everyday and located in complex crossroads of culture, politics, economics and culture.