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Participants: Ben Allen * Stephanie August * Damon Loren Baker * Theo Ellin Ballew * Ivette Bayo Urban * John Bell * Paisley Benaza * Kathi Berens * David Berry * Sayan Bhattacharyya * Christina Boyles * Gregory Bringman * André Brock * Ron Burkey * Evan Buswell * Sarah Ciston * Eileen Clancy * Tara Conley * Krystal Cooper * Ranjodh Dhaliwal * Anthony Di Franco * Craig Dietrich * Jeremy Douglass * Kevin Driscoll * William Dyson * Brandee Easter * Martin Erwig * Schuyler Esprit * Max Feinstein * Todd Furmanski * Geoffrey Gimse * Erin Glass * Rochelle Gold * Catherine Griffiths * Ben Grosser * Fox Harrell * Sydette Harry * Brendan Howell * Nazua Idris * Jessica Johnson * Waliya Yohanna Joseph * Ted Kafala * Dorothy Kim * Corinna Kirsch * Steve Klabnik * Shelly Knotts * Peter Kudenov * Fidelia Lam * Liz Losh * Thor Magnusson * Jim Malazita * Judy Malloy * Zach Mann * Mark Marino * Lauren McCarthy * Irma McClaurin * Patrick McDonnell * Tara McPherson * Todd Milstein * Nick Montfort * Mark Neal * Safiya Noble * Keith O'Hara * David Ogborn * Allison Parrish * Ali Pearl * Gerol Petruzella * Andrew Pilsch * Samuel Pizelo * Jessica Pressman * Helen Pritchard * Daniel Punday * Kristopher Purzycki * Harvey Quamen * Amit Ray * Margaret Rhee * Lisa Rhody * Scott Richmond * Teddy Roland * Jamal Russell * Anastasia Salter * Mark Sample * Evan Schauer * Ari Schlesinger * Mehdy Sedaghat Payam * Ash Smith * Winnie Soon * Glen Southergill * Mel Stanfill * Samara Hayley Steele * Nikki Stevens * Tonia Sutherland * Miriam Sweeney * Ezra Teboul * Daniel Temkin * Dennis Tenen * Marilyn M. Thomas-Houston * Elizabeth Timbs * Giuseppe Torre * Rebecca Uliasz * Annette Vee * Sneha Veeragoudar * Ashleigh Wade * Kurt James Werner * Jacque Wernimont * Zach Whalen * Roger Whitson * Roger Whitson * Michael Widner * Jody Zellen * Kai Zhang
Coordinated by Mark Marino (USC), Jeremy Douglass (UCSB), Catherine Griffiths (USC), Ali Rachel Pearl (USC), and Teddy Roland (UCSB). Sponsored by the Humanities and Critical Code Studies Lab (USC), and the Digital Arts and Humanities Commons (UCSB).

Waliya

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Waliya
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  • SamaraHayleySteele

    I have a question for ya Waliya. What does coding mean to you?

    January 25
    • SamaraHayleySteele
      SamaraHayleySteele
      Thank you for any thoughts on this!
    • Waliya
      Waliya
      Instructing computer in a machine Languages for it to perform a task designed by the programmer. Sorry if my answer does not please you.
    • SamaraHayleySteele
      SamaraHayleySteele
      Well, the reason I ask is because last month when you contacted me asking to know what CCS was, I was too busy and overwhelmed with deadlines to answer your question, which is why I referred you to this project. I apologize for not having an answer for you at the time. Thankfully, I've just finished up the heap of work I was grappling with and have a bit of spare energy to devote to your question now.

      The reason I ask "What does code mean to you?" is because this question I think is at the core of whatever Critical Code Studies is or claims to be. CCS scholars are not merely interested in the basic mechanics of how code works--if that's what we were interested in, we'd just be CS or Code Studies. The reason we have that extra "C" in there--the reason we're "_Critical_ Code Studies"--is that we interrogate code for meaning.

      In a message you sent me through a different website, you wrote, "I will always disturb you till I learn CCS at your feet."

      As someone who grew up in the American low-income housing projects and was homeless as a teenager, I can really relate to your sentiment in this regard. Whatever scholarly methodologies I've been privileged to gain exposure to has been because I was relentless in my hounding of those I perceived to be "on to something." So, that relentless spirit I admire and can relate to.

      Your desire to learn "at my feet," though, or at anyone's feet for that matter, now there's a problem with that. This isn't Code Studies afterall, this is _critical_ code studies. And you really can't learn a criticism if you're too busy looking at someone's feet to see where they are directing their gaze. Likewise, if your aim is to "disturb" someone until they teach you, well, you will likely undermine the conditions they need to be able to direct their gaze appropriately, meaning they won't be able to train you in it. It's like trying to chase a cat. Never works. You have to be subtle with such creatures. Same you could say of the more feline disciplines, the ones in which criticism and holding space for a type of gaze is key.

      When asked about what Critical Code Studies is here is how I direct my gaze:

      Two years ago, as part of this working group, Mark Marino, who write the [initial call](http://www.electronicbookreview.com/thread/electropoetics/codology) to do Critical Code Studies, wrote the following piece of reflection regarding the state of CCS as it approached its 10th birthday:

      "Two key paradigmatic methods for Critical Code Studies have been the reading of code (code as a text) and the annotation of code (code as a manuscript). These methods have their strengths and limitations, but have been rewarding in making aspects of code artifacts, code culture, media archaeology, and software society all legible through the powerful lenses and established scholarly practice of close reading (the hermeneutic interpretive situation) and scholarly editing (as in the creation of code footnotes and marginalia). Yet if it is powerful to imagine code as in part (like so many things) “a text,” then the drawback of that insight is that it can sometimes frame our imagination of how we may read and annotate code artifacts in overly-limited (alphanumeric) “textual” terms."

      So, two key paradigmatic methods for CCS, according to Mark, are treating code as text, so reading it, and treating code as manuscript, as in annotating it. Mark also cautions us to be weary of treating code merely as text just because these are the methodologies at play within CCS. Code always something is more, or at least our work with in CCS is make it to be.

      So, when I want to do CCS, my approach is to take a block of code and write about the meanings in it that I am interested in making discussion space for. I do larp code, not machine languages, but the methodology is the same. By working to build these types of meanings, we create a type of opening for new engagements with code, for new ways for love to enter the coding practice.

      It would be an honor if you'd like to cut your teeth and do some CCS scholarship, and if so, my suggestion for you is to take a block of code and start annotating it and/or writing our the meaning you read from it. Most excellently, you've already presented a block of code before this group that seems ripe for such a project:

      > @Waliya said:
      > This is the code that made me to quit programming. I took me 12 hours to code this on netbeans but I could not fix it. Please somebody should help me fix this error. I will be grateful to you.
      >
      > ```
      > /*
      > * To change this license header, choose License Headers in Project Properties.
      > * To change this template file, choose Tools | Templates
      > * and open the template in the editor.
      > */
      > package biblereader;
      >
      > import java.io.BufferedReader;
      > import java.io.File;
      > import java.io.IOException;
      > import javax.swing.JFileChooser;
      > import javax.swing.JOptionPane;
      >
      > /**
      > *
      > * @author Yohanna
      > */
      > public class FileReader extends javax.swing.JFrame {
      > private static final long serialVersionUID = 1L;
      >
      > /**
      > * Creates new form FileReader
      > */
      > public FileReader() {
      > initComponents();
      > }
      >
      > private FileReader(String filename) {
      > throw new UnsupportedOperationException("Not supported yet."); //To change body of generated methods, choose Tools | Templates.
      > }
      >
      > /**
      > * This method is called from within the constructor to initialize the form.
      > * WARNING: Do NOT modify this code. The content of this method is always
      > * regenerated by the Form Editor.
      > */
      > @SuppressWarnings("unchecked")
      > //
      > private void initComponents() {
      >
      > jButton1 = new javax.swing.JButton();
      > jScrollPane1 = new javax.swing.JScrollPane();
      > jTextArea1 = new javax.swing.JTextArea();
      >
      > setDefaultCloseOperation(javax.swing.WindowConstants.EXIT_ON_CLOSE);
      > setTitle("Bible Reading Kits");
      > setFont(new java.awt.Font("Algerian", 0, 10)); // NOI18N
      > setForeground(new java.awt.Color(255, 0, 51));
      > setName("Bible Standard"); // NOI18N
      >
      > jButton1.setForeground(new java.awt.Color(255, 51, 51));
      > jButton1.setIcon(new javax.swing.ImageIcon(getClass().getResource("/biblereader/Bible.jpg"))); // NOI18N
      > jButton1.setText("Read your Bible Always");
      > jButton1.setCursor(new java.awt.Cursor(java.awt.Cursor.DEFAULT_CURSOR));
      > jButton1.setDebugGraphicsOptions(javax.swing.DebugGraphics.BUFFERED_OPTION);
      > jButton1.addActionListener(new java.awt.event.ActionListener() {
      > public void actionPerformed(java.awt.event.ActionEvent evt) {
      > jButton1ActionPerformed(evt);
      > }
      > });
      >
      > jTextArea1.setEditable(false);
      > jTextArea1.setBackground(new java.awt.Color(51, 51, 255));
      > jTextArea1.setColumns(20);
      > jTextArea1.setFont(new java.awt.Font("MS Gothic", 0, 14)); // NOI18N
      > jTextArea1.setForeground(new java.awt.Color(255, 51, 204));
      > jTextArea1.setLineWrap(true);
      > jTextArea1.setRows(5);
      > jTextArea1.setWrapStyleWord(true);
      > jTextArea1.setBorder(javax.swing.BorderFactory.createTitledBorder(null, "Bible Standard Life", javax.swing.border.TitledBorder.CENTER, javax.swing.border.TitledBorder.DEFAULT_POSITION, new java.awt.Font("Tahoma", 1, 12), new java.awt.Color(255, 255, 255))); // NOI18N
      > jTextArea1.setCaretColor(new java.awt.Color(204, 255, 102));
      > jTextArea1.setSelectionColor(new java.awt.Color(0, 255, 153));
      > jScrollPane1.setViewportView(jTextArea1);
      >
      > javax.swing.GroupLayout layout = new javax.swing.GroupLayout(getContentPane());
      > getContentPane().setLayout(layout);
      > layout.setHorizontalGroup(
      > layout.createParallelGroup(javax.swing.GroupLayout.Alignment.LEADING)
      > .addGroup(layout.createSequentialGroup()
      > .addGap(23, 23, 23)
      > .addGroup(layout.createParallelGroup(javax.swing.GroupLayout.Alignment.LEADING)
      > .addComponent(jScrollPane1)
      > .addComponent(jButton1, javax.swing.GroupLayout.DEFAULT_SIZE, 482, Short.MAX_VALUE))
      > .addContainerGap())
      > );
      > layout.setVerticalGroup(
      > layout.createParallelGroup(javax.swing.GroupLayout.Alignment.LEADING)
      > .addGroup(layout.createSequentialGroup()
      > .addContainerGap()
      > .addComponent(jButton1, javax.swing.GroupLayout.PREFERRED_SIZE, 38, javax.swing.GroupLayout.PREFERRED_SIZE)
      > .addPreferredGap(javax.swing.LayoutStyle.ComponentPlacement.RELATED)
      > .addComponent(jScrollPane1, javax.swing.GroupLayout.PREFERRED_SIZE, 210, javax.swing.GroupLayout.PREFERRED_SIZE)
      > .addContainerGap(javax.swing.GroupLayout.DEFAULT_SIZE, Short.MAX_VALUE))
      > );
      >
      > pack();
      > }//
      >
      > private void jButton1ActionPerformed(java.awt.event.ActionEvent evt) {
      > JFileChooser chooser = new JFileChooser();
      > chooser.showOpenDialog(null);
      > File f = chooser.getSelectedFile();
      > String filename = f.getAbsolutePath();
      >
      > try {
      > FileReader reader = new FileReader(filename);
      > BufferedReader br = new BufferedReader(reader);
      >
      > jTextArea1.read(br, null);
      > br.close();
      > jTextArea1.requestFocus();
      > }
      > catch(IOException e){
      > JOptionPane.showMessageDialog(null, e);
      > }
      > }
      >
      > /**
      > * @param args the command line arguments
      > */
      > public static void main(String args[]) {
      > /* Set the Nimbus look and feel */
      > //
      > /* If Nimbus (introduced in Java SE 6) is not available, stay with the default look and feel.
      > * For details see http://download.oracle.com/javase/tutorial/uiswing/lookandfeel/plaf.html
      > */
      > try {
      > for (javax.swing.UIManager.LookAndFeelInfo info : javax.swing.UIManager.getInstalledLookAndFeels()) {
      > if ("Nimbus".equals(info.getName())) {
      > javax.swing.UIManager.setLookAndFeel(info.getClassName());
      > break;
      > }
      > }
      > } catch (ClassNotFoundException ex) {
      > java.util.logging.Logger.getLogger(FileReader.class.getName()).log(java.util.logging.Level.SEVERE, null, ex);
      > } catch (InstantiationException ex) {
      > java.util.logging.Logger.getLogger(FileReader.class.getName()).log(java.util.logging.Level.SEVERE, null, ex);
      > } catch (IllegalAccessException ex) {
      > java.util.logging.Logger.getLogger(FileReader.class.getName()).log(java.util.logging.Level.SEVERE, null, ex);
      > } catch (javax.swing.UnsupportedLookAndFeelException ex) {
      > java.util.logging.Logger.getLogger(FileReader.class.getName()).log(java.util.logging.Level.SEVERE, null, ex);
      > }
      > //
      >
      > /* Create and display the form */
      > java.awt.EventQueue.invokeLater(new Runnable() {
      > public void run() {
      > new FileReader().setVisible(true);
      > }
      > });
      > }
      >
      > // Variables declaration - do not modify
      > private javax.swing.JButton jButton1;
      > private javax.swing.JScrollPane jScrollPane1;
      > private javax.swing.JTextArea jTextArea1;
      > // End of variables declaration
      > }
      > ```
      >
      > The result:
      >
      > ```
      > /FileReader.java:107: error: incompatible types: FileReader cannot be converted to Reader
      > BufferedReader br = new BufferedReader(reader);
      > ^
      > Note: Some messages have been simplified; recompile with -Xdiags:verbose to get full output
      > 1 error
      > ```
      >
      >

      If you want to approach this code from a CS angle, which is to say you want to learn more about how it works, I very much suggest you try [stack exchange](https://stackexchange.com/). There are lots of passionate people there, and if you post it on the right thread, you're bound to find someone who can help you fast.

      But if you want to engage in this block of code in the CCS way, you might try doing some writing that answers one or all of the following questions:

      - What does this code mean to you?
      - What compelled you to write it? Why does it matter to you to be able to write in this computer language? Within your unique cultural milieu, how do people talk about this type of code?
      - How did it feel to not have the code work? What thoughts were going through your head?
      - Why did you give up on coding? What would have made you want to stay?
      - Has anyone gathered data about within your cultural milieu giving up on this language or on coding in general? Whether it be via the methodologies of sociology, anthropology, or psychology, is this something that you might want to do, or that someone else has done? What results might be gleaned or hypothesized?
      - If you gave up on coding, then why are you here doing CCS? What draws you back to code?

      These questions are not dictates from no where. I mean, the reason I am asking these sorts of questions is that my scholarly background is as a memoirist. I hold an MFA in nonfiction writing with a memior emphasis, so when I get a classroom, or when I teach my "Writing for Social Change" community workshops, these are the ways I direct my guests' attention, and I try as best I can to play good host.

      I believe that the personal is political, and that we simply must tell our own stories ourselves, and that it is our job as systematically oppressed people to direct other people's attention towards what hurts to the extend that we can bare it. But that's just my approach. There are other amazing scholars here who, while united with me in terms of our core methodology of interrogating the text/manuscript of code for meaning, are going to use vastly different methods in terms of how to manifest and interact with that meaning. And that's fine. That's what this is all about. We all have our different methodologies, but we all, at the very least, are able to stand back from the code and gaze at it--standing side by side the way a group might gaze at a painting in an art gallery--all with our different frameworks for structuring our feels and thoughts about what we're looking at.

      Anyway, thanks for your question, Waliya. Please choose to take or leave the above suggested writing prompts based on whether they suit your needs.

      Also, regarding your question about hoping for peer-review of your transhumanism paper, I'm afraid that's not my field (I am about ten years behind on that scholarship) and I wouldn't be able to give you the quality of critique as someone who's been steeped in that work in recent years. Hopefully, if you keep asking around, you'll find the right eyes for your paper.
    • Waliya
      Waliya
      You have actually answered all my questions. I am self-motivated person when it comes to study. So, I learn at ease. Learning at your feet/disturbing you, I meant I will be asking you some few questions If I don't understand something. That's all what I meant. I am very sorry for using those words on you. I must commend some excellent virtues in you-cares for humanity and sacrifice for people (time, treasure and talent). I appreciate your gestures from the dept of my heart. I thank you for all admonitions.
  • jeremydouglass

    Hi Waliya -- we have corrected your name on the Participants list -- thank you for pointing it out.

    January 15
    • Waliya
      Waliya
      I am very grateful Sir.
    • jeremydouglass
      jeremydouglass
      Just noticed that it also wasn't alphabetized right, so I have now put it under J on the Participants thread and the blue sidebar.
    • Waliya
      Waliya
      Thanks very much sir though I am not happy this evening because my computer crashed. I lost some documents.
    • jeremydouglass
      jeremydouglass
      I saw your changed code example! To help I edited it to add a blank line and three ` marks above and below the code, this formatted it like source code for the form (you can edit your post and look at the text to see what I did).
    • Waliya
      Waliya
      Thanks very much