17.669 unfulfilled expectations

From: Humanist Discussion Group (by way of Willard McCarty willard.mccarty@kcl.ac.uk)
Date: Thu Feb 26 2004 - 02:44:35 EST

               Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 17, No. 669.
       Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                     Submit to: humanist@princeton.edu

         Date: Thu, 26 Feb 2004 07:42:16 +0000
         From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty@kcl.ac.uk>
         Subject: unfulfilled expectations

Those here will likely be interested in a recent piece by Edward L Ayers
and Charles M Grisham, "Why it has not paid off as we had hoped (yet)", in
the Educause Review 38.6 (November/December 2003), at
http://www.educause.edu/pub/er/erm03/erm0361.asp. More or less the same has
been said for some time now about the early promise of AI, though with more
focus on what machines would shortly be doing than, as in the Ayers and
Grisham piece, with what people should be doing with machines. Charles
Taylor wrote in Philosophy and the Human Sciences (vol 2 of Philosophical
Papers, Cambridge, 1985, p. 1) of AI as of behavioural psychology that
"either these inadequate theories avoid the interesting questions, or they
show themselves up and have to expend more and more energy in defense". I'd
say, never mind looking for percentages of adopters and virtually swelling
virtual classrooms. Rather. let us ask, what are the interesting questions?
If we want to get our colleagues engaged, that, it seems to me, is the way
to do it.



Dr Willard McCarty | Senior Lecturer | Centre for Computing in the
Humanities | King's College London | Strand | London WC2R 2LS || +44 (0)20
7848-2784 fax: -2980 || willard.mccarty@kcl.ac.uk

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