Download My Mother Was a Computer: Digital Subjects and Literary by N. Katherine Hayles PDF

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By N. Katherine Hayles

We are living in an international, in response to N. Katherine Hayles, the place new languages are continually rising, proliferating, and fading into obsolescence. those are languages of our personal making: the programming languages written in code for the clever machines we name desktops. Hayles's most up-to-date exploration offers an exhilarating new method of realizing the kinfolk among code and language and considers how their interactions have affected artistic, technological, and creative practices.

My mom used to be a Computer explores how the impression of code on daily life has develop into reminiscent of that of speech and writing: las anguage and code have grown extra entangled, the traces that when separated people from machines, analog from electronic, and previous applied sciences from new ones became blurred. My mom used to be a Computer offers us the instruments essential to make feel of those advanced relationships. Hayles argues that we are living in an age of intermediation that demanding situations our rules approximately language, subjectivity, literary items, and textuality. This technique of intermediation happens the place electronic media engage with cultural practices linked to older media, and right here Hayles sharply portrays such interactions: how code differs from speech; how digital textual content differs from print; the results of electronic media at the notion of the self; the results of digitality on published books; our conceptions of desktops as residing beings; the chance that human cognizance itself may be computational; and the subjective cosmology in which people see the universe throughout the lens in their personal electronic age.

We are the kids of desktops in additional than one experience, and no critic has performed greater than N. Katherine Hayles to give an explanation for how those applied sciences outline us and our tradition. Heady and provocative, My mom used to be a Computer can be judged as her most sensible paintings but.

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Additional resources for My Mother Was a Computer: Digital Subjects and Literary Texts

Sample text

But one of the cru­ cial discoveries of this book is that even programs with very simple underlying rules can yield great complexity.... And so it could be with fundamental physics. (434) In this passage and in similar ones, Wolfram introduces a crucial ambi­ guity into his claims for the Computational Universe. At issue is whether computation should be understood as a metaphor pervasive in our cul­ ture and therefore indicative of a certain "climate of opinion" (in Raymond Williams's phrase) at the turn of the millennium, or whether it has ontolog­ ical status as the mechanism generating the complexities of physical reality.

My argument, will stand or fall not on general claims and caveats about seminal texts but on in-depth explorations of the complex dynamics with which I want to engage. Accordingly, I turn now from this chapter focused on tech­ nology to a comparison of the theoretical frameworks and worldviews of speech, writing, and code. 38 M A I( I N G : LAN G U A G E AND C O D E 2 S peech , Writing , Code Three Worldviews The locus of Com plexity Speech, writing, code: these three major systems for creating signification interact with each other in millions of encounters every day.

Writing, unlike speech (before recording technologies) , is not confined to the event of its making. It can be stored and transmitted, published in dozens of countries and hundreds of differ­ ent editions, read immediately after its creation or a thousand years hence. In a sense it is no surprise that Derrida summarizes this difference between writing and speech by fusing "difference" with "defer," for the ability to de­ fer indefinitely our encounter with writing leaps out as perhaps the most salient way in which it differs from speech.

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