Somebody Help Us Understand What Software Does

Maybe I chose the wrong Ph.D. program. Our Monday Workshop on 03/17 made me wonder: if everybody in California is as cool as Fred Turner, then why did I decide for the East Coast?! After pondering on it for two weeks, however, I don’t believe that his distinctive character of creative smartness and uncomplicated supportiveness emerged simply by living on the West Coast. I’m quite right where I am. Continue reading

Inspired Part 4: Tools vs. Machines—A Helpful Distinction?

One last—and regarding further work maybe even the most important—in this season of posts inspired by recent exposure to John Tresch’s The Romantic Machine deals with fMRIs in a rather broad sense: Even though Tresch does not write much about sciences of the brain, his reflections on human-technological alliances and their transformative potential add a lot to my interest in putting people in numbers and negotiating the measures between domains. Categorizing humans according to bodily and mental measures and personal characteristics by making use of devices of any sort is part of the attempt to inform contemporary policies and improve—or justify—social realities and political economy. Continue reading