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featured: Reverse Engineering and Genealogy

A still image from the AMC series Halt and Catch Fire. Gordon (Scoot McNary, left) and Joe (Lee Pace, right) reverse engineer an IBM PC's BIOS system.

The foucaultblog has just published a new paper by Robert Gehl on Reverse Engineering and Genealogy. Gehl, who teaches communication at the University of Utah, articulates the practice of tracing software back to preceding versions with Foucault's history of the present. His article explores the theoretical bases for reverse engineering, drawing mainly on software engineering literature, and considers the ways in which this technical approach might inform genealogical inquiry along Foucauldian lines. The paper is based on research conducted for Gehl's book Reverse Engineering Social Media (2014).

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