2024 Computer History Museum Prize

Nominations are now open for the 2024 Computer History Museum Prize. The deadline is April 15, 2024.

See full instructions here: https://www.sigcis.org/chmprize.

2023 Computer History Museum Prize

Winner: Kevin Driscoll, The Modem World: A Prehistory of Social Media (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2022).  


2023 Mahoney Prize

Winner: Hannah Zeavin. “‘This Is Womenspace’: USENET and the Fight for a Digital Backroom, 1983–86.” Technology and Culture 63, no. 3 (July 13, 2022): 634–64. https://doi.org/10.1353/tech.2022.0104.

2023 Computer History Museum Prize

Nominations are now open for the 2023 Computer History Museum Prize. The deadline is April 30, 2023.

See full instructions here: https://www.sigcis.org/chmprize.

2022 Computer History Museum Prize



Jacob Gaboury, Image Objects: An Archaeology of Computer Graphics (MIT Press, 2021)


2022 Mahoney Prize



Theodora Vardouli and David Theodore, “Walking Instead of Working: Space Allocation, Automatic Architecture, and the Abstraction of Hospital Labor,” in IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, vol. 43, no. 2, pp. 6-17, 1 April-June 2021. Prize


SIGCIS events at SHOT in New Orleans

There's some terrific computer & information history events scheduled for the SHOT annual meeting in New Orleans, coming soon on November 10-13, 2022. Here's an overview of the meeting; there's three elements in particular that you should check out: 



New Orleans, LA, US | November 13, 2022

The Special Interest Group in Computing, Information, and Society [SIGCIS] welcomes submissions to their annual conference

Read the details here: meetings.sigcis.org

Proposal Due Date: June 1, 2022

2021 Computer History Museum Prize


Morgan G. Ames, The Charisma Machine: The Life, Death, and Legacy of One Laptop per Child (MIT Press, 2019).

Prize Citation:

Morgan G. Ames’s The Charisma Machine impressed the judges for both the clarity of its writing and its superlative scholarly achievement. Ames thoughtfully engages with the history of the One-Laptop-Per-Child dream, from Seymour Papert’s vision in the 1960s, through Nicholas Negroponte’s embrace of the project in the 2000s, and Walter Bender’s efforts to take the computer into the world. What may look like a traditional history of ideas about the spread of computers is in fact much deeper and broader: Morgan Ames subtly creates more space to look at the project and its actors from a critical distance and explore the hidden assumptions and the technocolonialism underlying their technocratic dreams. Rather than mechanically using the toolbox of STS to deconstruct the technocratic dreams, the author reaches beyond. The book is informed by an impressive mastery of ethnography and cultural studies, as well as science and technology studies. And the author takes the reader to places where historians seldom go. Historians of technology know that users matter, but Ames makes the OLPC users a central part of her narrative and visits different continents to better convey the users’ context and experience. In doing so, she blazes new paths for contemporary history.

2020 Computer History Museum Prize


Gerardo Con Diaz, Software Rights: How Patent Law Transformed Software Development in America (New Haven: Yale University Press 2019).

Prize Citation:

Gerardo Con Diaz's Software Rights is the definitive account of the history of software patents in the United States. Meticulously researched and engagingly written, the book is notable for its original analysis and empirical novelty. Most contemporary discussions of software patenting treat software as something purely “virtual,” but this book brings the physicality of software to the foreground and shows how that physicality has at times been instrumental to software patents. It also highlights the interpretive flexibility of software (as text, algorithm, and machine) and the ways in which these ambiguities facilitated competing arguments for and against patenting. And it tracks the changing criteria for patenting and the conflicts within the complex legal framework for intellectual property protection. Particularly refreshing was its presentation of the shifting positions of various stakeholders and the genuine disagreements within those groups. The history of software patenting is tremendously complicated, and the judges were impressed with how carefully, clearly, and insightfully Software Rights explains this history. As one judge put it, “If I were to recommend a single book on the history of software patents, this would be it.” Chapeau for this achievement!


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