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IMPACT ON BROADCAST

      The major implication of this shift for communication studies in general is that it introduces a new generation of media. Carl Sagan (1977) describes tools as either extragenetic (that is, outside the genetic code but still inside the body) or extrasomatic (that is, outside the body). All media involve the storage and transmission of information. The classification of storage and transmission as extragenetic or extrasomatic yields a useful taxonomy of media (see Figure 2). In the first generation (show and tell), both storage and transmission are inside the body; in the second generation (shoot and print), storage is outside the body in books and films; in the third generation (view and phone), transmission is outside the body on waves and wires; and in the fourth generation (integrate and interact), both storage and transmission are outside the body.

      In this fourth generation, which completes the taxonomy, the information is stored in disc/ks (floppy disks, hard disks, CD-ROM disc, videodiscs, etc.) and transmitted through the above-mentioned informatics infrastructure of computer nodes interlinked by telecommunications. This fourth generation of media, which is currently and rapidly emerging, is variously called hypermedia, interactive multimedia, intermedia, metamedia, multimedia, etc. Multimedia is an unfortunate term (media is already plural) but, since it is the one which seems to be catching on, let us use it for now.

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