Aarhus Universitets segl

Friday Lecture – Nathaniel Tkacz: Format Archaeology: A method for understanding contemporary data cultures.

Oplysninger om arrangementet


Fredag 28. april 2023,  kl. 14:15 - 16:00


Aarhus University, Helsingforsgade 14, 8200 Aarhus N, Building 5347, room 120 (Brandorff Lounge)


In this presentation, I reflect on the method of “format archaeology” developed in my recent book Being with Data. Format archaeology draws on earlier theorisations of format (Sterne, 2012; Koopman, 2019; Jancovic et al., 2020) and places them in dialogue with the tradition of media archaeology (Parikka, 2012). I will offer an overview of how format archaeology can be used to explore contemporary data interfaces. Using the example of the data dashboard, I argue that a format is not just something found on an interface or as a technical standard, but rather works to structure experiences and materialities across time-spaces in various ways. 


Nathaniel Tkacz is a Reader in Digital Media and Culture and director of the Centre for Digital Inquiry

at the University of Warwick. His work often focuses on the cultural, political, economic and organisational dimensions of technology, with a specific focus on networked and digital forms. He has authored/edited 5 books, including Wikipedia and the Politics of Openness (University of Chicago Press, 2015). His most recent book is Being with Data: The Dashboarding of Everyday Life (Polity Press, 2022). His recent research has contributed to the emerging areas of 'interface criticism' and the social and cultural study of apps. He is a member of the App Studies Initiative and co-founded the MoneyLab network.