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I. THEORY – 2. Websites

Epistemic content

Giorgio Buccellati – April 2021

Structure – from within (writing)

The digital discourse brings to its full realization the complex interaction among data sets and narratives. Seen from within, the structural make-up consists of a complex web of relationships that may be represented graphically in this highly simplified chart:

database and discourse
Fig. 1

Let us take A as the core narrative. Steps c-d are taken from narrative B, where they occur as steps a-b, which can only fully be inderstood if they are seen in the context of all the following steps of the argument in narrative B. – The same obtains for steps f-h of narrative A wihch are taken from narrative D. – In turn, step i of the core narrative A relies on data (Y) in cell 4a from the green database which make sense only if seen in the full context of row 4 and in fact of the entire categorization of this particular (green) database. Incidentally, the content (X) in cell 4b calls for step h in narrative C for an explanation. – Finally, step d of narrative A, which is in fact step b of narrative B, relies on the full row 2 of the blue database.

This correlation is not optional, it is necessary. Steps c-d in the argument flow of A are borrowed dynamically from steps a-b in layer B, and similarly for steps f-h. In other words, the argument in layer A would be incomplete without the relevant portions of layers B and C, which, in turn, can only be understood when seen as steps a-b and c-e in their respective layers. We may refer to this as the sequential coordination of dynamic multilinearity.

It is this complex web of relationships that elevates a digital dicoruse to the level of big data status.

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Structure – from without (reading)

progression within linearity
the argument builds on stages, where one presupposes the other
it builds on presuppositions, which requires a sequential reading
a digital discourse should be approached in the same way
hyperlinks make this possible, but they should be treated gently and skillfully

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The ultimate achievement of poetry is that it refuses segmentation. Yes, there may be a verse that stands out and that we carry in memory as particularly evocative. But ultimately every “piece,” i.e., every word or segment of a poem, whether articulated metrically (as with verses) or not, is in absolute need of all the other pieces. That is the supreme beauty of authentic poetry, the sense of explosion one receives when everything blends into an illuminating unity.

It is useful to mention poetry in this context because of the light it sheds on the notion of segmentation in relationship to the whole.

relationship to artificial intelligence
Poetry is a whole (whether a sonnet or a large architectural complex such as Dante’s Comedy) which emerges whole
triumph of the whole
relatioship to words
unified vision exported to words
cannot be rephrased, whereas an argument can

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