Clifford and UMass Dartmouth Colleagues Publish an Article on Creative Variability in Computer Programming

UMass Law Professor Ralph Clifford co-published an article on computer programs as creative works.

Ralph Clifford, UMass Law faculty


UMass Law Professor Ralph Clifford along with UMass Dartmouth colleagues co-published an article titled An Initial Examination of Computer Programs as Creative Works which challenges the misconception that set expressions limit computer programs, leaving no room for creativity. The article gives an analysis of the variation in expression and differences in the level of creativity based on program complexity. Implications for the creativity of programs in literature, computer science education, and intellectual property law, particularly copyright, are discussed as well.

The article was written with fellow UMass Dartmouth co-authors, Trina Kershaw (Department of Psychology), Firas Khatib (Department of Computer & Information Science), and Adnan El-Nasan (Department of Computer & Information Science). Research for the article was supported by an award from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Multi-Institutional Collaborative Seed Funding Program. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts also published the article in their Peer-reviewed journal.

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