Max Feinstein

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I'm an undergraduate student at the University of Southern California, where I'm studying philosophy and neuroscience. Additionally, I'm investigating how computer code can be read critically, using an interdisciplinary approach called Critical Code Studies. I love discussing CCS, so please don't hesitate to approach me with questions about it!

Full Bio: 

I spent 3 years playing tenors/quints on the USC drumline. Many of my most cherished memories and best friends were made during that time :)

In addition to studying Philosophy and Neuroscience, I've spent the last year working with USC faculty member Mark C. Marino (in the Writing department) on Critical Code Studies. I was fortunate enough to (a) encounter Dr. Marino as he was positioning the field and (b) chance to have such a selfless mentor who's gracious enough to let me work with him. (It was Dr. Marino who nominated me for HASTAC -- without him, I wouldn't be here!)

The central question that Critical Code Studies implores scholars to ask is this: What can we learn about software by reading code as text, instead of just sets of instructions? The CCS approach includes a close scrutiny of lines of code, as well as consideration for who wrote the software, why it was written, what impact it has had on society, and so forth. I could (and would love to) go on, but my bio isn't really the place for it. But please, do ask about CCS if you're at all intrigued by the idea of critically reading code!

With regard to my own experiences with CCS, I've been fortunate enough to present a paper on it at the Electronic Literature Organization's "Archive and Innovate" conference (July, 2010). Additionally, I co-organized (and presented another paper at) the first CCS conference at USC, which also took place in July of 2010.

Lastly, I've recently taken an interest in composing, mixing, and re-mixing electronic music. I've long been a fan of electronic music and have finally found the time (now that I'm no longer on the drumline) and resources (Ableton Live + the swanky APC40) to make my own jams. Although I enjoy a variety of electronic sub-genres, I'm primarily interested in dubstep, a style that emphasizes a "2-step" feel (think reggae) and some very intense, wildly textured bass lines that often double as melodic lines. I just started a blog ( where I post all of my work.

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