a conceptual labyrinth at the speed of light

"McLuhan drops Shannon and Weaver's focus on the mathematics of information, but at the same time follows the basic line of their argument by prioritizing analysis of the technology of message transmission over interpretation of its content (a move most media analysis is still reluctant to make today; see Kittler, 1996b). In this way, McLuhan's famous declaration that the 'medium is the message' develops the thinking of Shannon and Weaver (for whom there is no real message, only a signal, see Hayles, 1999: 18) by asserting the role of the channel (which Weaver also calls a medium) in shaping the content of what is transmitted (rather than vice versa). It is this transformative power which, for McLuhan, is the real message of technology: 'the "message" of any medium or technology is the change ofscale or pace or pattern that it introduces into human affairs' (1964: 8). But McLuhan also gives Shannon and Weaver's communication system a further twist, for the information source (the sender) and final destination of communication are dropped from his account."