Oracular Intelligence

Headshot of Kris Paulsen
Monday, May 3 2021, 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM, Virtual Event
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Society, Culture, Thought Program

SCT Colloquium—Spring 2021
Monday, May 3 2021 7:00 PM Monday, May 3 2021 8:30 PM America/New_York Oracular Intelligence OPEN TO THE PUBLIC | It is becoming increasingly common to lean on algorithms to determine our individual and collective futures—what to buy, when to sell, who to date, whom to arrest and how to punish them. Artificial intelligence has become Oracular Intelligence, which does not just guess the future but guides the course of forthcoming events. Virtual Event Bennington College

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC | It is becoming increasingly common to lean on algorithms to determine our individual and collective futures—what to buy, when to sell, who to date, whom to arrest and how to punish them. They draw upon the past to predict what should happen next. It makes fiction into fact. Artificial intelligence has become Oracular Intelligence, which does not just guess the future but guides the course of forthcoming events. By this logic, the future is no longer even possible: it is constantly preempted and turned into a version of an endlessly looping and expanding past. Looking to artist-made AI oracles, this talk examines how the bodies, figures and forms we give to AI, as much as their “brains,” determine the kinds of relationships we can have with them and the futures they can offer to us in return.

Kris Paulsen is associate professor in the Department of History of Art at The Ohio State University. She is the author of Here/There: Telepresence, Touch, and Art at the Interface (MIT Press, 2017), which received the Anne Friedberg Award for Innovative Scholarship from the Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS). Her research and teaching focuses on the intersections of art and technology, from photography to computational media, with emphasis on telepresence, interface studies, virtuality, and early video. She is currently working on a new book project that examines how our fleshly, corporeal bodies are implicated in—or completely left out of—contemporary imaginings of humanity’s future.

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