[Humanist] 22.548 what kind of good?

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Thu Feb 19 09:29:28 CET 2009

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 22, No. 548.
         Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

        Date: Wed, 18 Feb 2009 06:51:53 +0000
        From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
        Subject: what kind of good?

Thinking now in the wee moments left before sunrise about Martin 
Mueller's modified version of Lane Cooper's "making the poet write 
literary literary essays about himself", I wonder more about the 
cosmological difference between then (1919) and now, close to a century 
later. Cooper was writing just 3 years before the Vienna Circle was 
first convened, when "positive knowledge" about a real-world-out-there 
was a compelling project. We all still bump into things if not kick 
stones in our path and so are reminded that the positivists had a point. 
But our cosmology is very different, excitingly different. Do we not now 
 consider the data-abstraction we make from the words on the physical 
page as only the beginning of possibilities for modelling textual 
communication? Now that computers are fast enough for interaction design 
to be possible, isn't it time that we were thinking more about modelling 
the process(es) by which literature arises from our interaction with 
words? Not at all to be theological, but the beginning of the Gospel 
according to John does come strongly to mind. How about modelling what 
happens when the word is read?


Willard McCarty, Professor of Humanities Computing,
King's College London, staff.cch.kcl.ac.uk/~wmccarty/;
Editor, Humanist, www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist;
Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, www.isr-journal.org.

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