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Sometimes Google Books scans pictures of human hands along with the book pages

Wired: “Google Books contains more than 25 million volumes, disembodied like spirits from their spines. The individual titles are digitized by data entry workers who flip the pages for machines, working so quickly their hands and fingers sometimes get caught by the scans. These glitches, collected in Andrew Norman Wilson’s Scan Ops, reveal the old-school manual labor that still supports the digital age, even at the Googleplex. “It’s quite Fordist,” Wilson says. “Press button, turn page, repeat…

…The images expose the disconnect between how Google Books is experienced and how it’s produced. But the process is constantly evolving. Are these the last vestiges of manual labor before automation and artificial intelligence take over? Or maybe a sign that in the digital future, digital work—in the five-fingered sense—will always be around? Images from Scan Ops are on view in the exhibition All I Know Is What’s On the Internet at the Photographer’s Gallery in London through February 24.”

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