Adrian Mackenzie: Machine Learners: Archaeology of a Data Practice (2017)

22 June 2018, dusan

“If machine learning transforms the nature of knowledge, does it also transform the practice of critical thought?

Machine learning—programming computers to learn from data—has spread across scientific disciplines, media, entertainment, and government. Medical research, autonomous vehicles, credit transaction processing, computer gaming, recommendation systems, finance, surveillance, and robotics use machine learning. Machine learning devices (sometimes understood as scientific models, sometimes as operational algorithms) anchor the field of data science. They have also become mundane mechanisms deeply embedded in a variety of systems and gadgets. In contexts from the everyday to the esoteric, machine learning is said to transform the nature of knowledge. In this book, Adrian Mackenzie investigates whether machine learning also transforms the practice of critical thinking.

Mackenzie focuses on machine learners—either humans and machines or human-machine relations—situated among settings, data, and devices. The settings range from fMRI to Facebook; the data anything from cat images to DNA sequences; the devices include neural networks, support vector machines, and decision trees. He examines specific learning algorithms—writing code and writing about code—and develops an archaeology of operations that, following Foucault, views machine learning as a form of knowledge production and a strategy of power. Exploring layers of abstraction, data infrastructures, coding practices, diagrams, mathematical formalisms, and the social organization of machine learning, Mackenzie traces the mostly invisible architecture of one of the central zones of contemporary technological cultures.

Mackenzie’s account of machine learning locates places in which a sense of agency can take root. His archaeology of the operational formation of machine learning does not unearth the footprint of a strategic monolith but reveals the local tributaries of force that feed into the generalization and plurality of the field.”

Publisher MIT Press, November 2017
ISBN 9780262036825, 0262036827
272 pages
via A.B.

Publisher
WorldCat

PDF
Draft and code samples on GIT

Ryszard Winiarski: Event, Information, Image (2017)

20 September 2017, dusan

Ryszard Winiarski (1936-2006) was an artist, painter, stage designer and teacher. He was precursor of conceptual art and leading representative of indeterminism in Polish art.

Catalogue for an official collateral event of Venice Biennial, 2017.

Edited by Ania Muszyńska and Magdalena Marczak-Cerońska
Publisher Fundacja Rodziny Staraków, Warsaw, 2017
Open access
ISBN 9788364381089
156 pages

Exhibition website

PDF, PDF (9 MB)

Hans Freudenthal: Lincos: Design of a Language for Cosmic Intercourse, Part I (1960)

4 December 2016, dusan

This book introduces an artificial language designed to be understandable by any possible intelligent extraterrestrial life form, for use in interstellar radio transmissions. The Dutch mathematician Hans Freudenthal considered that such a language should be easily understood by beings not acquainted with any Earthling syntax or language. Lincos was designed to be capable of encapsulating “the whole bulk of our knowledge.”

Publisher North-Holland, Amsterdam, 1960
Studies in Logic and the Foundations of Mathematics series
224 pages
via keriokleptes

Reviews: S.W.P. Steen (British J Phil of Science, 1962), E.E. Dawson (Mind, 1964), Louis Narens (J Symbolic Logic, 1973).
Survey: Vincenzo Latronico (ACME, 2007).
Commentary: Vincenzo Latronico (Bulletins of The Serving Library, 2017).

Wikipedia
WorldCat

PDF (10 MB)
See also CosmicOS inspired by Lincos.