Reading Machines, What is code, 17776

This week’s readings were really fascinating and I really enjoyed reading Jon Bois’ 17776 and What is code. Probably it’s because of all of the professional technical terms in the book Reading Machines, I found it’s hard to get into my reading zone when I first started reading it. But I had no doubt about that it has merit, just like what Ramsay stated – all criticism is deformational in some way. Reading 17776 was a whole different experience and I think it’s a perfect combination of digital art and speculative fiction. While reading it, I can’t help myself but think about how did Jon Bois figure out to arrange this book in this way. Did he write everything by himself then hand it off to a coder/programmer? I had a similar reading experience with reading Between Pages and Screen, where I found myself get distracted easily and had a hard time to really focus on the content. Reading the article What is codeĀ reminded me of one conversation we had during the class a few weeks ago. We had a conversation about the future of writing where we discussed the question: “If you are “writing” something on your laptop, who is actually doing the writing thing? Yourself or the code behind the laptop?” Even though I’ve read about how the code works now, I still don’t have a very specific answer to that question. Because I found myself always debating with my own thoughts. Part of me would agree that no matter how the form of writing changes, the writing itself is not changing and we are still in charge of doing the writing. However, part of me would also agree that there is no way we could do the writing on the laptop without the code behind it. I look forward to hearing others’ opinions/thoughts on this question.

3 thoughts on “Reading Machines, What is code, 17776

  1. I completely agree that Reading Machines was hard to get into because of the technical terms. But I also enjoyed reading the other two articles. I thought these readings were very closely connected to our conversation a few weeks ago. Your thought about who is writing is a great example of the connections. I too don’t know if I can answer that question. The ideas are from the person, but the actual formation would be because of the code within the computer.

  2. I totally agree with this idea that we are always in a position of “writing” regardless of how the materiality of that writing changes. Maybe we just need to expand our definition of what writing means in order to encompass all of the possible ways writing happens, and then maybe that can open up more possibilities in terms of how writing can happen?

  3. hi there,
    I also felt like Reading Machines was a bit more complex and contained terms that I was not familiar with; I agree with what you say about Jon Bois’ reading, I was also amazed at the format that he chose to present this information. I honestly never considered anything other than a typical book format as actual reading material, but this class has really changed my mind about that.

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