Language, Technology, Change

Context: Language Modelling at Scale: Gopher, Ethical considerations, and Retrieval

There is perhaps no more salient feature in the landscape of accelerating technological metamorphosis than that of the many and varied ways that artificial intelligence is recursively shaping the shared vocabularies of our current historical moment.

Language holds a special place in that not only is it our primary mechanism of interpersonal communication but it provides each of us, as though by cultural and technological osmosis, the moving frame and self-gravitational centre around which the narrative teleology of our reflexive cognition is cultivated. As we alter the methods and mediums of transmission by and through which language is formed, we proceed to shape the normative patterns, symmetries and assumptions of thought and reality we each and all inhabit.

It is worth acknowledging that language is only as useful as it is ambiguous. It is the non-specificity of linguistically-mediated experience that make it useful. If (and when) we start to assert closure and containment or ontological certainty in regards to the form and flow of this communications tool, we begin to ossify and lose resilience to change. These technologies of language and machine intelligence inhabit us just as much as we do them.

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