Cutting Code: Software and Sociality

Front Cover
New York, 2006 - Computers - 215 pages
Software has often been marginalized in accounts of digital cultures and network societies. Although software is everywhere, it is hard to say what it actually is. Cutting Code: Software and Sociality is one of the first books to treat software seriously as a full-blown cultural process and as a subtly powerful material in contemporary communication. From deCSS to Java, from Linux to Extreme Programming, this book analyses software artworks, operating systems, commercial products, infrastructures, and programming practices. It explores social forms, identities, materialities, and power relations associated with software, and it asks how software provokes the re-thinking of production, consumption and distribution as entwined cultural processes. Cutting Code argues that analysis of code as a mosaic of algorithms, protocols, infrastructures, and programming conventions offers valuable insights into how contemporary social formations invent new kinds of personhood and new ways of acting.

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Expression and execution in software
Sequence and convolution

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About the author (2006)

Adrian Mackenzie researches and teaches in the Institute for Cultural Research, Lancaster University. He has degrees in science and philosophy, and received his Ph.D in philosophy from Sydney University. In addition to professional experience as a software developer, he is author of Transductions: Bodies and Machines at Speed (2002), and numerous scholarly articles.

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