The Everyday Life of an Algorithm

The Everyday Life of an Algorithm


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This open access book begins with an algorithm–a set of IF…THEN rules used in the development of a new, ethical, video surveillance architecture for transport hubs. Readers are invited to follow the algorithm over three years, charting its everyday life. Questions of ethics, transparency, accountability and market value must be grasped by the algorithm in a series of ever more demanding forms of experimentation. Here the algorithm must prove its ability to get a grip on everyday life if it is to become an ordinary feature of the settings where it is being put to work. Through investigating the everyday life of the algorithm, the book opens a conversation with existing social science research that tends to focus on the power and opacity of algorithms. In this book we have unique access to the algorithm’s design, development and testing, but can also bear witness to its fragility and dependency on others.

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  • Accountability
  • Algorithm
  • Algorithmic Effects
  • Algorithms & data structures
  • big data
  • Calculations
  • Computer programming / software development
  • Computer science
  • Computers and civilization
  • Computing & information technology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Culture
  • Data structures (Computer science)
  • Digital Space
  • Ethical & social aspects of IT
  • Hardware
  • Information technology: general issues
  • Internet Activities
  • Mathematical logic
  • Mathematical theory of computation
  • Online Behavior
  • Online Search Activities
  • openness
  • science and technology studies
  • Social sciences
  • Society & culture: general
  • Society & Social Sciences
  • Sociology
  • Sociology & anthropology
  • Software
  • STS
  • Technology
  • Technology—Sociological aspects
  • transparency


DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-00578-8


edition cover
edition cover


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