Tag Archives: computationalism

Right Reaction and the Digital Humanities

UKIP

A while back, I had an encounter that struck me at the time, and continues to strike me, as perfectly emblematic of the Digital Humanities as an ideological formation. While it includes a kind of brutal incivility that I associate with much of the politics that persists very near the “nice” surface of DH (of […]

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Tor Is Not a “Fundamental Law of the Universe”

Tor for freedom

In what I consider a very welcome act of journalistic open-mindedness, Pando Daily recently published a piece by Quinn Norton that responded both to Yasha Levine’s excellent and necessary piece on the US Government’s funding of the Tor Project, and perhaps even more so his even more necessary piece on the amazing attacks his piece […]

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Talk: ‘Cyberlibertarianism: The Extremist Foundations of ‘Digital Freedom”

lib soc fed

Talk delivered at Clemson University, September 5, 2013 Full paper: Cyberlibertarianism: The Extremist Foundations of ‘Digital Freedom’ Abstract Cyberlibertarianism has rapidly become the dominant mode of political thought of our time. Especially in the US, but also around the world, the view that might be summed in the slogan “computerization will set you free” has […]

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Centralization and the ‘Democratization’ of Higher Education

amazon central

In my previous post, “Computerization, Centralization, and Concentration,” I discussed how the fact that decentralization and distribution are genuine hallmarks of the networked computerization revolution can easily blind us to the fact that centralization and concentration, especially of economic power, are also its hallmarks, in many cases even more strongly than are the former. One […]

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Computerization, Centralization, and Concentration

uranium enrichment centrifuge

One of the most dangerous canards of the digital revolution is the one according to which distribution, decentralization, and democratization are the characteristic hallmarks of contemporary mass computerization. To writers of earlier ages (Huxley, Orwell, Lem, Weizenbaum, Wiener, Mumford, Ellul, Roszak, just to name a few), such sentiments would seem shocking, because what they understood […]

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Google, Culture, Computationalism

This sort of story captures what i see as one of–perhaps the–most paradigmatic manifestations of computationalism. I have noticed how much more streamlined, clean, and professional Google’s designs have been recently. It never occurred to me to think about how their design team works, although i spent lots of time working at this interface. It […]

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Draft for Comment: ‘Playing with Rules’

The Electronic Book Review kindly published an in-depth review of The Cultural Logic of Computation (and of Mark McGurl’s The Program Era: Postwar Fiction and the Rise of Creative Writing, both Harvard UP 2009) by Brian Lennon titled “Gaming the System.” The editors of the journal ask all reviewed authors to respond; after far too […]

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“Open Science,” “Climate Change,” “Transparency,” “Trust,” and the “Internet Age”

Anyone about to cheer The Wall Street Journal‘s giving Evgeny Morozov a platform to speak will revert to their usual outrage at Rupert Murdoch’s flagship publication in today’s remarkable op-ed by “media and information industry advisor and executive” and former WSJ publisher L. Gordon Crovitz published under the heading: “Climate Change and Open Science: In […]

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Morozov on the “Digital Dictatorship”

Sometimes, the truth is just out there. I’ve been learning a lot from Evgeny Morozov for a while and i’d like to think that his work fits with a slightly disturbing clarity with my recent book The Cultural Logic of Computation and the recent work of a number of other second (third?) wave digital theorists […]

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