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The cultural logic of computation / David Golumbia.

By: Golumbia, David.
Material type: TextTextSeries: JSTOR eBooks.Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2009Description: 1 online resource (257 pages).Content type: text Media type: computer Carrier type: online resourceISBN: 9780674053885; 0674053885.Subject(s): Computers -- Social aspectsAdditional physical formats: Print version:: Cultural logic of computation.DDC classification: 303.48/34 Other classification: MS 7965 Online resources: Click here to view this ebook.
Contents:
The cultural functions of computation -- Chomsky's computationalism -- Genealogies of philosophical functionalism -- Computationalist linguistics -- Linguistic computationalism -- Computation, globalization, and cultural striation -- Computationalism, striation, and cultural authority -- Computationalism and political individualism -- Computationalism and political authority -- Epilogue: Computers without computationalism.
Summary: Advocates of computers make sweeping claims for their inherently transformative power: new and different from previous technologies, they are sure to resolve many of our existing social problems, and perhaps even to cause a positive political revolution. In The Cultural Logic of Computation, David Golumbia, who worked as a software designer for more than ten years, confronts this orthodoxy, arguing instead that computers are cultural "all the way down"--That there is no part of the apparent technological transformation that is not shaped by historical and cultural processes, or that escapes existing cultural politics. From the perspective of transnational corporations and governments, computers benefit existing power much more fully than they provide means to distribute or contest it. Despite this, our thinking about computers has developed into a nearly invisible ideology Golumbia dubs "computationalism"--an ideology that informs our thinking not just about computers, but about economic and social trends as sweeping as globalization. Driven by a programmer's knowledge of computers as well as by a deep engagement with contemporary literary and cultural studies and poststructuralist theory, The Cultural Logic of Computation provides a needed corrective to the uncritical enthusiasm for computers common today in many parts of our culture.
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Item type Current location Call number URL Status Date due Barcode
Electronic Book UT Tyler Online
Online
QA76.9.C66 G68 2009 (Browse shelf) https://ezproxy.uttyler.edu/login?url=http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2307/j.ctt13x0fr7 Available ocn651663944

Includes bibliographical references (pages 233-250) and index.

The cultural functions of computation -- Chomsky's computationalism -- Genealogies of philosophical functionalism -- Computationalist linguistics -- Linguistic computationalism -- Computation, globalization, and cultural striation -- Computationalism, striation, and cultural authority -- Computationalism and political individualism -- Computationalism and political authority -- Epilogue: Computers without computationalism.

Print version record.

Advocates of computers make sweeping claims for their inherently transformative power: new and different from previous technologies, they are sure to resolve many of our existing social problems, and perhaps even to cause a positive political revolution. In The Cultural Logic of Computation, David Golumbia, who worked as a software designer for more than ten years, confronts this orthodoxy, arguing instead that computers are cultural "all the way down"--That there is no part of the apparent technological transformation that is not shaped by historical and cultural processes, or that escapes existing cultural politics. From the perspective of transnational corporations and governments, computers benefit existing power much more fully than they provide means to distribute or contest it. Despite this, our thinking about computers has developed into a nearly invisible ideology Golumbia dubs "computationalism"--an ideology that informs our thinking not just about computers, but about economic and social trends as sweeping as globalization. Driven by a programmer's knowledge of computers as well as by a deep engagement with contemporary literary and cultural studies and poststructuralist theory, The Cultural Logic of Computation provides a needed corrective to the uncritical enthusiasm for computers common today in many parts of our culture.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

Golumbia (English, media studies, and linguistics, Univ. of Virginia) makes clear at the beginning of this book that it is not about computers per se, but rather society's beliefs and ideas about computers. The author uses "computationalism" to mean "a commitment to the view that a great deal, perhaps all, of human and social experience can be explained via computational processes." The book explores four aspects of computationalism. Part 1, "Computationalism and Cognition," includes a discussion of the views and work of Chomsky. Part 2, "Computationalism and Language," examines machine translation and natural language processing. Part 3, "Cultural Computationalism," addresses the connection between computerization and globalization. Part 4, "Computationalist Politics," deals with the relationship of computerization to individualism and political authority. This is a thought-provoking book, full of interesting ideas that would be valuable to teachers and researchers in the area of contemporary culture. It belongs in the libraries of all institutions serving scholars in this discipline. The work should also appeal to general readers who are interested in computerization's effects on culture. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students and above; general readers. R. Bharath emeritus, Northern Michigan University

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