Algorithms

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Can computers be creative? Is algorithmic art just a form of Candy Crush? Cutting through the smoke and mirrors surrounding computation, robotics and artificial intelligence, Joanna Zylinska argues that, to understand the promise of AI for the creative fields, we must not confine ourselves solely to the realm of aesthetics. Instead, we need to address the role and position of the human in the current technical setup—including the associated issues of labour, robotisation and, last but not least, extinction. Offering a critique of the socio-political underpinnings of AI, AI Art: Machine Visions and Warped Dreams raises poignant questions about the ...
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Over the past decade, a growing number of artists and critical practitioners have become engaged with algorithms. This artistic engagement has resulted in algorithmic theatre, bot art, and algorithmic media and performance art of various kinds that thematise the dissemination and deployment of algorithms in everyday life. Especially striking is the high volume of artistic engagements with facial recognition algorithms, trading algorithms and search engine algorithms over the past few years. The fact that these three types of algorithms have garnered more responses than other types of algorithms suggests that they form a popular subject of artistic critique. This critique addresses ...
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PublisherMeson Press2015
What does thinking mean in the age of Artificial Intelligence? How is big-scale computation transforming the way our brains function? This collection discusses these pressing questions by looking beyond instrumental rationality. Exploring recent developments as well as examples from the history of cybernetics, the book uncovers the positive role played by errors and traumas in the construction of our contemporary technological minds. With texts by Benjamin Bratton, Orit Halpern, Adrian Lahoud, Jon Lindblom, Catherine Malabou, Reza Negarestani, Luciana Parisi, Matteo Pasquinelli, Ana Teixeira Pinto, Michael Wheeler, Charles Wolfe, and Ben Woodard.
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Ancestors and Algorithms appears online in issue 2 of Fictional Journal and is reproduced in the Propaganda pdf document. In 2000, Dan Greaney, the writer of The Simpson’s cartoon, imagined Donald Trump as the president of the United States in the episode Bart to the Future, and he admits that the idea “was pitched because it was consistent with a vision of America going insane.” The show creates an unimaginable scene, the embodiment of its viewer’s worst nightmare and hilarious fantasy that has since become reality. A global dissatisfaction with liberal democracy has cleared the political stage for right-wing populists such as Trump and ...
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PublisherArpa Journal2014
The idea of being online is in danger of extinction from redundancy. The Internet has become the principal site of construction, defense, storage and dissemination of new knowledge and social identity alike. Facebook’s population will soon eclipse that of China, and its holdouts nonetheless have well-formed electric selves in the servers of the NSA. As our physical world is increasingly tapped, scanned, streamed, imaged and mapped in realtime, the province of offline is a shrinking territory. In each wave of digitization—the archival, the social, the physical—the evidence of its arrival and its path to maturity are the same: search. For David Joselit, ...
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New technological media such as film, photography and computers have altered the way we perceive possible relations between stillness and motion in the visual arts. Traditionally, cinema theory saw cinema and especially the ‘illusion of motion’ as part of the ideological swindle of the basic cinematic apparatus. This collection of essays by acclaimed international scholars including Tom Gunning, Thomas Elsaesser, Mark B.N. Hansen, George Baker, Ina Blom and Christa Blümlinger, starts out from a different premise to analyse stillness and motion as part of a larger ecology of images and media. They argue that the strategic uses of stillness and ...
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PublisherPro Publica2016
Across the American criminal justice system, the Northpointe corporation’s COMPAS algorithm is one of many that are used to determine the likelihood that a prisoner will commit further crimes and return to prison, known as recidivism. After extensive tests and analysis on the prison statistics of a single county in Florida using a custom set of tools, the journalism foundation ProPublica found that COMPAS disproportionally mis-identitied black prisoners as having higher recidivism likelihoods and white prisoners as having lower ones, affecting sentencing outcomes and treatment by the system. Though Northpointe disputed their results, ProPublica found that the dataset produced for ...
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PublisherMACBA2010
Generative music is a term used to describe music which has been composed using a set of rules or system. This series of six episodes explores generative approaches (including algorithmic, systems-based, formalised and procedural) to composition and performance primarily in the context of experimental technologies and music practices of the latter part of the 20th Century and examines the use of determinacy and indeterminacy in music and how these relate to issues around control, automation and artistic intention. Each episode of this RWM series is followed by a special accompaniment programme of exclusive music by some of the leading sound artists ...
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Publisherdpr-barcelona2013
Have you ever wondered how one can get up in the middle of the night and move in a pitch-dark room? What makes such nightly excursions possible is the development of a mental image of one’s home that tightly corresponds to the surrounding physical space. But what if one could transfer this awareness from the domestic to the urban sphere? We might then be able to navigate the city with the same confidence that characterizes our domestic movements. While checking-in, liking, sharing and going through Augmented Reality experiences we might be unconsciously contributing to the construction of a nomadic, collective awareness. Simone ...
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There is no doubt that we live in exciting times: Ours is the age of many ‘silent revolutions’ triggered by startups and research labs of big IT companies; revolutions that quietly and profoundly alter the world we live in. Another ten or five years, and self-tracking will be as normal and inevitable as having a Facebook account or a mobile phone. Our bodies, hooked to wearable devices sitting directly at or beneath the skin, will constantly transmit data to the big aggregation in the cloud. Permanent recording and automatic sharing will provide unabridged memory, both shareable and analyzable. The digitization ...
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PublisherNew Models2019
When Spotify was founded in 2006, it aimed to solve the problem of online music distribution, remunerating artists for plays. 13 years on, it is a massive data node that is having a profound effect on how artists and audiences connect. In this cast, New Models speaks with music journalist Liz Pelly, who has written extensively on Spotify, particularly its impact on independent music. She talks to us, here, about Spotify’s structure, how it nudges artists to optimize their acts through metrics, and what it understands “music” (let alone “independent”) culture to be. Liz also gives an update on community ...
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Publishere-flux2021
Issue 123 of e-flux journal is guest-edited by the Critical Computation Bureau (CCB), a collective of researchers and writers working between technology and culture, computer science and information theory, aesthetics and politics. The members—Luciana Parisi, Ezekiel Dixon-Román, Tiziana Terranova, Oana Pârvan, and Brian D’Aquino—are situated in the US, the UK, and Southern Italy, and engage with networks spanning several continents to intervene in the techno-politics of racial capitalism and its recursive regeneration.

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