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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton August 28, 2019

New approaches to plastic language: Prolegomena to a computer-aided approach to pictorial semiotics

  • Everardo Reyes EMAIL logo and Göran Sonesson
From the journal Semiotica


In this paper we summarize observations bridging the declared aspirations of pictorial semiotics and its real achievements. Pictorial semiotics is here understood as the general study of pictures as signs and it constituted a fundamental step beyond the art historical captivation with individual images. In the first part of our contribution we present a review of the most important methods that have been proposed as an answer to deal with several pictorial problems (multiple instances, segmentation, non-figurative meaning). In the second part, we offer some positive and on-going implementations designed to remedy the shortcomings observed. What is suggested is the proof of concept that human researchers need the assistance of computing methodologies. However, computers can only do their job once an adequate phenomenology of human experience is fed into the process.


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Published Online: 2019-08-28
Published in Print: 2019-10-25

© 2019 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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