Distant reading and computing history
I have a few first thoughts on treating a code repository as source for distant reading methods. There are two imminent aspects
- I’m not very experienced in corpus analysis, and it shows
- Despite being written for humans and machines, source code heavily leans to the latter and eludes from being analysed by the likes of Voyant tools
There is an interesting part in Mark C. Marino’s early text on Critical Code Studies about source code being double coded, which he picked up at Mateas and Montfort.
Ultimately, they conclude that “All coding inevitably involves double coding. ‘Good’ code simultaneously specifies a mechanical process and talks about this mechanical process to a human reader”
I’m not convinced, tools like Voyant can deal with such double coding, being made for texts for human consumption only.
I thoroughly enjoyed this primer on how old computer graphics worked:
- How “oldschool” graphics worked Part 1 - Commodore and Nintendo
- How “oldschool” graphics work, part 2 - Apple and Atari
- CGA Graphics - Not as bad as you thought!
I’m trying to slowly getting into understanding the technological side of old computer or video game graphics. If I want to do some proper design rhetorics I will need to get my hands dirty as well, sooner or later, and not just analyse.