Language Game[s]: Poetry, Logic and Artificial Language

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05 May 2017

10am to 6pm

A one-day symposium and pop-up exhibition, Language Game[s] will include paper presentations, performances and creative works drawn from the fields of philosophy, artificial intelligence, robotics, science, poetry, linguistics and ‘other’.
Language Game[s] considers the association between language and human consciousness, and how developments in technology might affect this relationship. Language Game[s] proposes to examine the following questions: what is language as a primary human technology, and how are both language and us, being changed due to the rise of artificial/simulated language systems? In short: what is language, when it is no longer made by humans, but by a machine? Can a machine produce poetry in anything but name? 

Where does meaning lie in language? Philosophical discourses tend to assume that language is something produced by human beings. Is linguistic meaning supplied by human consciousness, or does it take place in the material act of expression (speech/writing)? If meaning in language resides within ‘the human’ and is an expression of thinking, then what happens when language migrates to machines?  

At present, Artificial Language systems (such as Siri and/or Amazon Echo) mimic the forms of human speech, but cannot replicate the cognitive processes which lie behind language. As technology develops and Artificial Language systems become ever more autonomous, how will this affect us? 

Alongside academic papers, the day includes a series of presentations by poets and artists, which take a ‘performative' view of the central role of language and its move towards machines/code. In addition, a pop-up exhibition exploring the themes and questions of the symposium will be available to view during the event.
Booking essential.
Full price £10 | Student £6. Ticket includes lunch and a drinks reception.
For speaker bios, abstracts and to book your place visit: 

10.15-10.30Introduction by Sheena Calvert
10.30-11.15Spambot EVP Poetics: Smalltalk for Lonely Ghosts
Ken Hollings (writer, broadcaster and cultural theorist)
11.15-11.45Action Tells his Story
Anna Ridler and Georgina Ward Dyer (Postgraduate students in Information Experience Design at the RCA)
11.45-12.00Refreshment Break
12.00-12.30Language as Technology and Technology as Language
Mark Coeckelberg (Professor of Philosophy of Media and Technology, University of Vienna & Professor of Technology and Social Responsibility at De Montfort University, UK. Vice-President of the Society for Philosophy and Technology).
12.30-13.00The Computer says yes I said yes I will Yes. She, Her, Eve
Kyran Joughin (Lecturer in Film and Critical Practice at Wimbledon College of Arts, UAL)
14.00-14.30Performing Machine Language: from Automatic Writing to the Transcendental Computer
Hannah Lammin (Philosopher and lecturer in Media and Cultural Theory at the University of Greenwich and Camberwell College of Arts, UAL)
Iris Colomb (Poet)
14.45-15.00A Dialogic Interrelation with the Electronic Other
Marilyn Allen (Lecturer, artist and one half of the collaborative double act ‘matthews and allen’)
15.00-15.15His Voice
Mark Leahy (writer and artist operating among textual practices and performance)
15.15-15.30Refreshment Break
15.30-16.15When robots tell each other stories - the emergence of artificial fiction
Alan Winfield (Professor of Robot Ethics at the University of the West of England)
16.15-16.45Concluding thoughts and Audience Questions
16.45-18.00Drinks Reception/Exhibition Viewing

Convened by Dr Sheena Calvert and presented by Camberwell, Chelsea, Wimbledon Graduate School Public Programme.