The first draft of The Measured Word chapter is done. This is a chapter that goes through what we can do with a computer to texts. It introduces stringA string is a series of characters (symbols, letters or numbers) of finite length. Strings are used to generate a collocation, concordance, co-occurrence, or any other type of textual analysis in which locating a word fragment, word, phrase, sentence and so on is important. For more information, see the Wikipedia. Return to Glossary. processing for humanists. The chapter covers stuff that many digital humanists will know, but it is meant as an introduction to thinking like a computer about texts.
The frame of the chapter is a tradition of thinking about artificial life, intelligence and interpretation which includes Pygmalion, Frankenstein, Searle's Chinese room, Dreyfus on AI and Powers. Richard Powers has a brilliant novel Galatea 2.2 where the narrator (a semi-biographical Richard Powers) helps train an AI designed to pass a Masters English exam as a version of a Turing test. The story uses this challenge to revist the story of Pygmalion and Galatea - the story of an artist (trainer) getting close with their creation. The story deals with computer assisted interpretation - an AI trained to respond to exam questions about a literary text - something we are trying to do with, though differently. We are not trying to build artificial interpreters but interpretative aides or tools to augment our interpretation.
In our conference call today we also discussed the next steps. We looked at some issues with word trends and single texts. We talked about how topic modeling should be promising for the Game Studies experiment.