[Humanist] 31.157 digital logic and theoretical confusions

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Tue Jul 4 08:11:37 CEST 2017


                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 31, No. 157.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                       www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

  [1]   From:    Jeremy Browne <jeremy_browne at byu.edu>                     (50)
        Subject: Re:  31.150 digital logic

  [2]   From:    Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>          (13)
        Subject: theories


--[1]------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Date: Mon, 3 Jul 2017 16:34:13 +0000
        From: Jeremy Browne <jeremy_browne at byu.edu>
        Subject: Re:  31.150 digital logic
        In-Reply-To: <20170701075221.2C4811B8F at digitalhumanities.org>


To a large degree those complaints about the logic of the digital are applicable critiques of humanities theories, e.g.:

"[Literary] theories do not offer a real epistemological contribution because of their partial range of vision that turns out to be self-referential, abstract and sometime contradictory. Even theories which address the same theme are often not connected either logically or causally, or by shared characteristics."

Our theories are extremely “sectorial,” and we are the champions of applying such theories to overly-“broad scenarios”.

So I’m comfortable with the “confusion that underpins computing” because it appear no less messy than any of the scores of theories native to our field.

Jeremy M. Browne, PhD

Assistant Research Professor
Coordinator, Digital Humanities and Technology Program
College of Humanities
Brigham Young University

1163 JFSB
Provo, Utah 84602
U.S.A.

Office Phone: 801-422-7439
Google Voice: 585-210-0106

jeremy_browne at byu.edu



On 7/1/17, 1:52 AM, "humanist-bounces at lists.digitalhumanities.org on behalf of Humanist Discussion Group" <humanist-bounces at lists.digitalhumanities.org on behalf of willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk> wrote:

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 31, No. 150.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                       www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org<mailto:humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org>



>        Date: Fri, 30 Jun 2017 17:11:14 +0000
>        From: Paolo Rocchi <procchi at luiss.it<mailto:procchi at luiss.it>>
>        Subject: Logic and theoretical confusion


How can humanists become aware of the logic of digital? Are they cognizant
of the theoretical confusion that underpins computing? Dozen of theories
deals with informatics, but this wealth of works does not make a coherent
knowledge base. Computing theories do not offer a real epistemological
contribution because of their partial range of vision that turns out to be
self-referential, abstract and sometime contradictory. Even theories which
address the same theme are often not connected either logically or causally,
or by shared characteristics.

Are computing theories useful? For sure. Each construction aids the
practitioners involved in the underpinned sectorial activity. It may be said
that every theory provides 'operational' assistance but appears absolutely
insufficient to cover the broad scenario addressed by those who want to
grasp the core of computing. I’ve developed this topic from the
educational perspective in: Guest Editorial - Informatics and Electronics
Education: Some Remarks IEEE Transactions on Education
http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/stamp/stamp.jsp?tp=&arnumber=7529250

All the best

Paolo Rocchi

Docent Emeritus
IBM
via Shangai 53, 00144 Roma

Adjunct Professor
LUISS University
via Romania 32, 00197 Roma



--[2]------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Date: Tue, 4 Jul 2017 07:04:52 +0100
        From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
        Subject: theories
        In-Reply-To: <20170701075221.2C4811B8F at digitalhumanities.org>

In response to Paolo Rocchi on theoretical confusions, I'd ask that 
first we look at what the word 'theory' is used to identify across the 
disciplines so that a usage e.g. in physics is not unwittingly applied 
outside the domain in which it makes sense. As an exercise I can 
recommend that one samples and then compares usages in the natural, 
social and human sciences. Very different critters.

Yours,
WM
-- 
Willard McCarty (www.mccarty.org.uk/), Professor, Department of Digital
Humanities, King's College London; Adjunct Professor, Western Sydney
University and North Carolina State University; Editor,
Interdisciplinary Science Reviews (www.tandfonline.com/loi/yisr20)




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