Creativness ontology for the Semantic Web
Development of the Semantic Web has, to date, been reliant on the propagation of metadata, taxonomies, vocabularies, concept maps and ontologies that are ultimately the responsibility of specialists in knowledge domains. Whilst the resulting technologies appear to have application for assisting with analysis and interpretation of complex data in microbiology, genetics and medical records, what use, other than classification of artworks for museums and image libraries may there be in the domain of art? Where meaning in an artwork is purposefully ambiguous, obscure, or left to the interpretation of the observer; knowledge arises from the implicit rather than the explicit; intangible rather than tangible; the experience somatic; reliant on the affective psyche. What hope is there for semantic machine interpretation of such notions? Indeed, the very idea that art can be classified using Linnaean type taxonomy is anathema to some creatives!
This line of research assumes that there may be universal value in the attempt to produce semantic ontologies relating to creative practices – even if these were to highlight that in addition to the ‘know that’ and the ‘know how’ there are indeed other kinds of knowledge. This study has the potential to contribute to the debate about the compatibility of computationalism and connectionism in artificial intelligence research.
Corporeality and digital media
As expressed in semiotic theory, the literary domain has dominated cultural analysis in the C20th. With digital media the roles that audio, visual and tactile sensibilities play need fine-grained analysis too. The convergence of mediums requires discourse on the heterogeneous and interlinked affect of communication modalities referred to as syncretism. A persistent theme in my theory development is to account for narrativity, visuality and tactility as discrete and yet syncretic elements in digital culture experienced corporeally. My artistic practice in the digital media field often informs this research. The phenomenological explanations of the techno-human interface by Mark Hansen are of significant interest.
The role that non-human agency plays in our worldy interactions is another interest that I pursue. Clearly this is a significant topic with regard to human-computer interaction. And it has broader application and relevance if we consider the flat ontology advocated by Manuel de Landa. As society tackles issues such as our threats to the ecosystem, we should strive to understand the creativity evident in material agency. Whilst a major influence has been Bruno Latour I am currently following the attempts by influential philosophers such Graham Harman to appropriate Latour’s sociology of science into the metaphysical context.