The reading-machine uses Computer Vision to identify the text on any page of an open book, before leveraging Machine Learning and Natural Language Processing to remove any unwanted words and illuminate that page. Once every page in the book has been processed, the system automatically publishes the results using an Internet printing service, and the resulting volume is then added to the Library of Nonhuman Books. From the moment our machine completes its re-reading, until the delivery of the book from the print-on-demand service, our automated-art-system proceeds without the intervention of humans.
The original 14th Century mystical text, subject of this most recent nonhuman reading, is focused on finding a path to divinity through deliberate processes of ‘unknowing’. Similarly, our automated-art-system seeks computational transcendence through processes of coded erasure, recursive redaction, and artificial illumination. The book is algorithmically ‘unknown’, one page at a time.
In a time where books are being transformed into clouds of words, this project helps the book find new bodies that lie between human and nonhuman worlds. A publishing experiment for a post-literate society, which increasingly defers its reading to nonhuman counterparts.