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‘Artificial intelligence (AI)’ is a loaded term, rife with connotative contradiction that inspires debate, disagreement, and disillusion. But what is AI, really? How have our expectations of computational capability, and even a robot Armageddon, come to be? Why does it matter how we talk about increasingly sophisticated technology, not just in expository prose, but also in fiction?
Over the past years, there has been a lot of debate around the nature of scholarship in the area of Humanities Computing or, more recently, Digital Humanities (DH); more specifically, there have been several attempts to define it and identify its disciplinary characteristics.(1) Despite disagreements in terms of its definition, though, the field has now reached a stage
The bard, of course, was on to something when he posed this now proverbial line. A rose is a rose no matter what you call it – unless of course it’s a turnip – well, you get my drift. The principle is a sound one, but try to get that across to the men on fifth in Marketing.
Most famously, Aristotle declared that men are by nature political. It’s chancy, of course, to take on the genius of Stagirus, but he did manage to get it wrong once in a very long while (oh, to be so wrong so infrequently!). Chaucer, however, may have had it more accurately (and certainly did so as he anticipated our digital age) when he argued that men by nature ‘love newfangledness’.
This volume brings together papers given at the Expert Seminar held in Sheffield in April 2006. The seminar allowed historians and archaeologists to share their insights into the use of digital media in their areas of study. Judging from the resulting book, this must have been a stimulating and fruitful occasion.