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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R3W600

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The hidden persuasions of algorithms Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
Rhetoric
Neuroplasticity
Hyperreal
Persuade
Algorithm
Doxa
Procedural rhetoric
Video games
Web sites
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Burden, Michael P
Supervisor and department
Gouglas, Sean (Humanities Computing)
Examining committee member and department
Bowling, Michael (Computer Science)
Quamen, Harvey (English)
Department
Humanities Computing
Specialization

Date accepted
2012-08-29T15:32:57Z
Graduation date
2012-11
Degree
Master of Arts
Degree level
Master's
Abstract
Algorithms are increasingly present in our lives and responsible for many aspects of society – but are hidden from inspection. As codified instructions they require design (unless simplistic) and this design emerges from a web of social factors. Web sites and video games contain decision-making algorithms, their decisions make statements about the user's world. Persuasion occurs in social contexts; as interactive devices inhabit social roles these decisions have persuasive effects. Additionally, the algorithmic design may contain doxa (unexamined assumptions), or exist within a hyperreal system - a simulation accepted as real by the user. In these ways the influence of the algorithm passes unexamined to the user. Also, through neuroplasticity tools become incorporated into the cognitive processes of the user's mind, becoming an agent of the enmeshed mind. The thinking of the algorithmic tools becomes a cognitive bias, its influence situated in the mind of the user.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R3W600
Rights
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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