Open Panel CFP « 4S Annual Meeting »: The Epistemology of Code and Computation

Abstracts due March 29, 2015

Organizers: Evan Buswell, UC Davis (ecbuswell@ucdavis.edu), Clarissa Ai Ling Lee, UCSI University in Kuala Lumpur (leeal@ucsiuniversity.edu.my)

W.Rebel - Own work CC BY 3.0

W.Rebel – Own work
CC BY 3.0

In the mathematical and scientific community, computers appear not as a collection of applications but as tools for running computations to produce knowledge. In certain respects, then, code has taken the place of mathematics as the epistemic basis and the medium of expression of knowledge. While code can be reasoned about mathematically, such that the correctness of a given program can be mathematically established, this is rarely done in practice. This has led to a miscognition and  misapplication of concepts such as « stochastic, » « analytics, » « probabilistic, » « modeling, » « optimization, » and others.

It is this panel’s goal to disrupt, dismantle, and dislocate these hyper-positivistic concepts, and to critically engage with the epistemological questions to which this computational shift gives rise. How do code and the results of computations figure into descriptions of knowledge? What role do code and computation play in the justification of knowledge? How are different practices of programming tied to different epistemic commitments? What becomes hidden and what becomes visible with the emerging use of code in knowledge production? These questions have been approached by the disciplines of software studies, critical code studies, platform studies, game studies, information studies, and other areas. While this fragmentary disciplinization was historically useful, we feel it is crucial to break out of the constraints of these microdisciplines to critically engage with the cross-cutting concerns raised by the arrival of epistemological computation itself.

We seek papers in: the semiotics of code and computation; the epistemological use of code and computation; the connections between politics, economics, and epistemological coding; and the possible and impossible futures brought into existence by the relationship between code and epistemology.

Submit a paper abstract to

https://convention2.allacademic.com/one/ssss/4s15/
and check the open panel box: « 37. The Epistemology of Code and Computation »

Abstracts due March 29, 2015

Answer notified by May 24, 2015

Clarissa Ai Ling Lee, B.Sc. (Malaya), MA (Malaya), PhD (Duke),
Consultant/Lecturer/Independent Scholar