Poetic Computation: Reader – Code as a form of poetry and aesthetic

Poetic Computation: Reader is an online-book about code as a form of poetry and aesthetic by Taeyoon Choi. Based on his lectures at the School for Poetic Computation, the book introduces the poetic aspects of computation and considers how engaging technology with this lens can lead to new political possibilities. In connecting modern computation to its historical antecedents, it problematises the fetishistic embrace of technology and presents a case for [radical/ongoing] intervention.

The book’s format is an extension of those themes—taking the form of an open source, digital reader designed and developed by New York-based studio HAWRAF. Exploring new ways for reading online, the book emphasizes accessibility, offering a range of inputs through which to engage with the text.

Using a customizable panel, users can adjust type size, font, color, and spacing, while another feature uses a text to speech API to enable users to listen instead. ‘Focus mode’ allows users to pull down ‘blinders’ to read as much or as little at a time. Highlights can be exported to an offline PDF to take it with you wherever you go. As a ‘reader’ which is classically considered as a collection of text and media that supplements a class, Poetic Computation: Reader has annotations and reference materials in parallel with the main text.

The first two chapters will be published at the time of launch, with the following chapters released over the year, emphasizing slow-reading and considered digestion of its contents. Future chapters will include interviews with scholars and practitioners, on topics of disability, gender, infrastructure, Artificial Intelligence, released in serial.

Project PageTaeyoon Choi | HAWRAF


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