There is No Software. Friedrich Kittler. Grammatologies of the present time have to start with a rather sad statement. The bulk of written texts – including this text. The following 3 pages link to this file: Friedrich Kittler · Software studies · File: Kittler Friedrich There is no (file redirect). A few years ago, the literary and media historian Friedrich Kittler opened an essay called “There Is No Software” with a “rather sad statement.” In his view, “the .

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The friedricg argument would hold against DOS which, in the final analysis, resolves into an extension of the basic input frierich output system called BIOS. The ever-growing hierarchy of high-level programming languages works exactly the same way as one-way functions in recent mathematical cryptography.

Any transformation of matter from entropy to information, from a million sleeping transistors into differences between electronic potentials, necessarily presupposes a material event called “reset”.

In turn, underneath these too is additional hardware, in which information is only represented as differences in voltage. We can tell [say] by reference to the form alone which combinations of the words are sentences, which sentences are axioms, and which sentences follow as immediate consequences of others.

At the one hand, they bear grandiloquent names such as WordPerfect, on the other hand, they bear a more friedgich less cryptic because non-vocalized acronym such as WP.

This fact means that computation is independent of hardware and that nature itself may be considered a Turing machine. The procedures of these machines, though still open to an frieddich notation, would have to work essentially on a material substrate whose very connectivity would allow for cellular reconfigurations.

File:Kittler Friedrich There Is No – Monoskop

Thus, instead of pursuing the physical Church-Turing-hypothesis, that is of “injecting an algorithmic behavior into the behavior of the physical world for which there is no evidence,” 15 one has rather to compute what has been called “the prize of programmability” itself.

Softwsre an illustration of this problem, a simple text program like the one that has produced my very paper will do. A useful summary is located on mediamatic.


You are commenting using your Facebook account. When meanings come down to sentences, sentences to words, and words to letters, there is no software at all. All physically feasible machines, in contrast, are limited by these parameters in their very code. The accompanying paperware cannot but multiply these magical powers, written as they are in order to bridge the gap three formal and everyday languages. There is No Software Friedrich Kittler Grammatologies of the present time have to start with a rather sad statement.

However, in constructing the first integrated microprocessor, Intel’s Marcian E. EXE files entertain a strange relation friedricn their proper name.

This relates again to the BIOS of the computer, which is another layer operating underneath even the operating system. One-way functions, in other words, hide an algorithm from its very result.

Again, history has shown that modern programming languages, instead of being progressively harder to decompile, are much easier than in the past especially languages such as Java or Csimilarly, all software is still universally accessible on one level or another, the communities that crack software or hack electronic devices such as game systems, portable music players, etcetera are tantamount evidence to this.

Software, if it existed, would just be a billion dollar deal based on the cheapest elements on earth. In a paper from he grapples, like Kirschenbaumwith the grounding of computation in matter, distilling this position to a wonderful aphorism: As an effect, software successfully occupied the empty place and profited from its obscurity.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: He specifically looks at the relations between Turing machines and microprocessors. This ongoing triumph of software is a strange reversal of Turing’s proof that there can be no mathematically computable problem a simple machine would not solve. Notify me of new comments via email. Such are the triumphs of software.

The last historical act of writing may well have been the moment when, in the early seventies, Intel engineers laid out some dozen square meters of blueprint paper 64 square meters, in the case of the later in order to design the hardware architecture of their first integrated microprocessor.


RSS feed for comments on this post. When Claude Shannon, inproved in what is probably the most consequential MA thesis ever written 16 that simple telegraph switching relays can implement by means of their different interconnections the whole of Boolean algebra, such a physical notation system was established.

Thus, instead of pursuing the physical Church-Turing-hypothesis, that is of “injecting an algorithmic behavior into the behavior of the physical world for which there is no evidence,” 15 one has rather to compute what has been called “the prize of programmability” itself. In the USA, notwithstanding all mathematical tradition, even a copyright claim for algorithms has recently succeeded.

Finally, this microprocessor found its place in the new desk calculators of Intel’s Japanese customer 1 and our postmodern writing scene began.

Whereas in the good old days of Shannon’s mathematical theory of information, softwware maximum of information coincided strangely with maximal unpredictability or noise, 9 the new IBM measure, called logical depth, has been defined ls follows:.

This structural difference can be easily illustrated. Surely, tapping the letter sequence of “W”, “P” and kitlter on an AT keyboard does not make the Word perfect, but this simple writing act starts the actual execution of WordPerfect. Hoff had given an almost perfect demonstration of a Turing machine. He invokes the idea friedgich software as similar to one-way cryptographic functions, and as a result, cannot be easily reproduced or computed. Precisely because software does not exist as a machine-independent faculty, software as a commercial or American medium insists all the more.

My favourite demonstration of what lies beyond this grammar is the evolvable hardware work of Adrian Thompsonin which circuit designs for programmable chips field gate programmable arrays – as in the image above are evolved using a genetic algorithm and tested in hardware for their performance in a particular task. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here