Machine-Believers Learning Faiths & Knowledges: The Gospel According to GPT

Internationales Jahrbuch Für Medienphilosophie 7 (1):97-121 (2021)
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One is occasionally reminded of Foucault's proclamation in a 1970 interview that "perhaps, one day this century will be known as Deleuzian." Less often is one compelled to update and restart with a supplementary counter-proclamation of the mathematician, David Lindley: "the twenty-first century would be a Bayesian era..." The verb tenses of both are conspicuous. // To critically attend to what is today often feared and demonized, but also revered, deployed, and commonly referred to as algorithm(s), one cannot avoid the mathematical and philosophical legacies of probability. // But attending to these probabilistic or Bayesian legacies must include an undeniable theological legacy in which they remain entangled. // We are not, today, discovering quirky theological metaphors in contemporary technics. It's the other way around. The technologies are mere metaphors of past theologies.

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Virgil W. Brower
Charles University, Prague


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