It all started when, on a trip to Germany, I was resting at the hotel bar. My glare was fixed on a slot machine endlessly running its attract mode. Snapping out of the (meanwhile) mesmerised state I was in, I wondered if I could isolate this obscure animation as a work. Back home, I obtained a machine and stripped it of its information (the glass plates, the reels, stickers, sounds, etc). The work basically is a tribute to the unknown programmer. The obscure unknown artist responsible for all the animations, start up modes, test modes, etc. of all the electronic hard- and software out there in the world. It is a found footage work, footage hidden in the interface of an ordinary nameless gambling machine.
OpenProcessing.org is a site that has built a community around sharing visual coding examples created in Processing. As user number 36, I had the unique privilege of watching the idea take shape, while in a thesis group with Sinan at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program. During it’s first two years of activity, the site has grown to host thousands of user-generated sketches and subsequent conversations between artists / programmers, teachers, and students from around the world. Sinan and I escaped the snow recently at a café outside Washington Square Park to discuss OpenProcessing’s origins, Rhizome’s collaboration with OpenProcessing in the Tiny Sketch competition, and what we can expect for the future. - Tim Stutts
Tim: How did you first come up with the idea for OpenProcessing?
Sinan: I guess the first thing to talk about is OpenVisuals, which was my Master’s thesis project at ITP (Interactive Telecommunications Program, New York University). I was reading Edward Tufte’s books at the time, and I became very interested in data visualization. In the meantime I was also fascinated with the social revolution that was happening on the web, through a class I was taking at NYU with professor Clay Shirky. Before studying with Clay, I didn’t understand Facebook—I didn’t even have a Facebook account. I knew I was missing some concepts, and wanted to understand what was going on. Through his classes, I decided that my thesis would have a social component. I also discovered ManyEyes, a site where users can upload datasets, and choose between different the visualization methods for augmentation. Users comment on each other’s visualizations, and may even suggest other ways of looking at or representing the dataset. What ...
The Codeorgan works by analysing the 'body' content of any web page and translates that content into music. The Codeorgan uses a complex algorithm to define the key, synthesizer style and drum pattern most appropriate to the page content.
A large installation in the Grand Entrance of London’s Victoria and Albert Museum clatters away, registering its presence in this historic hallway. Jointly commissioned (by the V & A and SAP), bit.code (2009), by Julius Popp, consists of a large panel of black and white blocks which appear to represent a curious, indecipherable code as they rotate around their frame. Periodically its units align, clearly depicting popular terms streamed live from news site feeds. In this physical form and location, this is real-time made somehow more timely. Looming over visitors, a literal staging of data being decoded, the work asserts itself as an apt entry portal to "Decode", the V & A's inaugural exhibition of contemporary digital and interactive design.
Since 2006, the two artists have been collecting films from mobile phones in the public sphere. It is the mixture of amateurish documentation of your own life, of a direct, unhampered view on your own reality, of unmotivated, unguided camera movements as the expression of boredom but also of directed little scenarios that aroused our collector's instincts. Paulitsch and Weyrich are accepting all films into their archive uncensored. This is increasingly developing into a fascinating document of our times, to a sort of evidence-gathering on and siting of the present. Above all, however, it resembles a bizarre album of weltering digital imagery.
For the exhibition YOU_ser 2.0 in the ZKM | Media Museum, the two artists make their mobile film archive accessible for visitors via mobile tagging. The mobile films are concealed behind the colourful QR codes, which visitors can decipher with their own WLAN-mobiles or with the mobiles provided by the museum. In this way, the content of the films Paulitsch and Weyrich are collecting on the street and publishing on the Net returns to the private sphere and into the medium where they originate. The video blog serves to show new extracts from this archive and offers a platform to films currently being collected.
Each code represents a visual enryption of a search on 'Aram Bartholl' in a specific language on Google.
A Google Portrait is a drawing which contains the Google URL search string of the portrayed person in encoded form. Any camera smart phone is capable to decode the matrix-code with the help of barcode reader like software. The result points the mobile phone browser to a search on the portrayed person's name at Google.
A large number of people can be found by name on Google today. Everyone who is working on a computer and uses the internet regularly can be found on Google. Even people who don't use computers can be found sometimes because their names appear in 'old' media (i.e. books) on the net.
'Egosurfing' is a popular way for a user to find out what websites and information Google returns on his/her name search.
How many hits does Google show on my name? Am I popular? Do I want to be found at all? Who writes about me? What do people find out about me when they google my name? Am I in concurrence to other persons with the same name? Do I rely on the results Google shows me on a person's name? In which way do I relate to someone which I only known by Google results?
I chose to create an embroidered version of a barcode to represent how technology has become interwoven, fused with our lives and our identity- to represent how we have become one and the same with technology.
Through new technology cell phones are now capable of scanning and decoding barcodes. However, these barcodes are a little different than the ones you see scanned at the grocery store: they are called 2D barcodes and are composed of black and white squares that encode the URLs to any website of creator's choice. In other words, these Data Matrix format barcodes are a physical hyperlink. Through my research I have learned how to create and program 2D barcodes with embedded text messages. I have also discovered that these barcodes can be reproduced in a variety of materials and are still capable of being scanned/read with a mobile phone.
N Building is a commercial structure located near Tachikawa station amidst a shopping district. Being a commercial building signs or billboards are typically attached to its facade which we feel undermines the structures' identity. As a solution we thought to use a QR Code as the facade itself. By reading the QR Code with your mobile device you will be taken to a site which includes up to date shop information. In this manner we envision a cityscape unhindered by ubiquitous signage and also an improvement to the quality and accuracy of the information itself.
Google's mission "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful" centers around faith in the power of the keyword to unlock its bottomless treasure chest and put the right answer in one window. Years have passed since the company's ranking algorithm outpaced the approach of human navigators filing information into channels -- an approach that Yahoo has been trying to keep alive by farming the digital labor to users themselves. But even as search algorithms make dinosaurs of the Dewey decimal and other brain-powered systems, it might be worth considering the benefits of staying open to a plurality of variously scaled methods.
These issues converge in Danny Snelson's work as a writer, editor, and archivist. His titles increasingly overlap in the internet's library without walls--an environment that often embodies the Foucauldian idea that "one never archives without editorial frames and 'writerly' narratives (or designs)," as Snelson put it in an email. As an archivist, he has made substantial efforts to preserve endangered cultural artifacts -- making them universally accessible and useful, you might say -- on behalf of PennSound, an audio archive specializing in recorded poetry, and UbuWeb, where, at the suggestion of founder Kenneth Goldsmith, he scanned out-of-print titles and reformatted them as PDFs for free distribution via the site's /ubu channel. The PennSounds and UbuWebs of the internet undertake preservation projects that small presses and recording labels can't touch due to financial reasons, thus ensuring that experimental work will continue to reach audiences in years to come. Distribution networks like these matter in an environment where the internet (for those without access to academic libraries, at least) is often the first and last stop for research -- a realization that impelled Goldsmith to formulate a radical ontology in the title of his 2005 essay, "If it doesn't exist on the internet, it doesn't exist."
Digital Arts and New Media (DANM) Technical Coordinator