Software, Globalization and Political Action

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Data and facts

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    This is more just a series of associations rather than a coherent question…

    Regarding the creation of composite images from Galton to Burson, but also the use of data in general to create the average or ideal representation of a group or category of people, most of these projects seems to attempt to create a picture of what this group shares in common. In reality, however, we see that this is a picture of nobody rather than everybody. This type of rule-based, rationalization via data for some reason reminded me of Hannah Arendt’s discussion of bureaucracy as the “rule of nobody” — this leads me to the Democracy Now segment that discussed the “pre-crime” punishment system of selecting those likely to commit terrorist attacks and killing them. I guess all this leads to the question: can data yield facts? Or will it only ever yield approximations that, by default, represent no thing and no one while attempting to provide information about every thing and every one (within a certain group)?

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