When Algorithms Learned How to Write

  • Mercedes Bunz


This chapter contributes to discussions in sociology of media that critically debate the interaction of algorithms with our knowledge and brain. Following Nicholas Carr (2010) and Katherine Hayles (2012) who have discussed the effect of information overload on reading, this chapter looks into algorithms that started to write using the example of a sports report writing algorithm Stats Monkey’. To add to the debate, the chapter delivers an overview of actual definitions of algorithms in the humanities, including Media Theory, Software Studies, and Digital Humanities. Then it traces today’s debate back to the problem of Artificial Intelligence and the misconception of a ‘Ghost in the Machine’ (Ryle 1949). Having refuted the ghost, technology emerges as a tool, which nothing but shifts the parameter of knowledge.


algorithms artificial intelligence digital humanities digital knowledge fact truth 


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Copyright information

© Mercedes Bunz 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mercedes Bunz
    • 1
  1. 1.Leuphana UniversityGermany

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