Rob Myers
Since 2003
Works in United States of America

Rob Myers is an artist and hacker based in the UK.

I have been creating images of the contemporary social and cultural environment through programming, design software and visual remixing since the early 1990s. My work is influenced by popular culture and high art in equal measures. My interest in remixing and sampling has led to my involvement in the Free Culture movement. I have been involved in the public consultation regarding the Creative Commons 2.0 and CC-UK licenses. All my visual art is available under a Creative Commons license.

My interest in programming has led to my involvement with the Free Software movement. I developed the Macintosh version of the Gwydion Dylan programming language compiler. All my software is available under the GNU GPL.
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Net Art Versioning

T.Whid -

I do think it's useful to view an artwork as consisting of different technical and semantic layers, and that this is true even for painting and sculpture.

The layers could be: The economic and social production and meaning of raw materials. Their preparation and distribution as artistic materials. The technical manipulation of those materials. The application of style. The iconography of the work. Its critical reception.

This reflects the increasing meaningfulness and distance from physicality of the IP stack. So impressionism and net art are both protocols on different transports. In the IP stack, IP is the choke point, it is what makes the Internet the Internet. What would the choke point for art be?


Net Art Versioning

Roughly translated: "We did the best we could with our primitive web and are staying there.

I don't know about "are staying there". Some net artists have kept up with the social whirl of Web 2.0, others are producing increasingly mature work in their chosen media.

And it's not just "we" who did the best with the net we had. The net contains social and media data now. But it's still data, and it's still on the net. That is my point.

If the prissy relational nominalism of Surf Clubs is a paradigmatic form of production then I really don't see what the difference to earlier net art with its use of older paradigmatic forms of production is meant to be.


Net Art Versioning

The technological base of (the content of) the network determines the cultural superstructure of (the content of) net art.

This is why 1.0 was (allegedly) about producing 404 pages and 2.0 is (allegedly) about consuming the media and relationships that are out there: it's what the network afforded at the time.

Social relations and non-network media are network content in Web 2.0. There is no difference between hacking up a 404 in 1994 and ironically posting links to existing media with your friends on a group blog in 2006. Both exist in the same relation to the network and to society.


When you go surfclubbin', don't forget your hat.

Net.Art 1.0 : Homepage Chic.
Net Art 1.5: Search Engine Chic.
Net Art 2.0: Blog Chic.
Net Art 2.5: Social Networking Chic.
Net Art 3.0: Celestial Jukebox Chic.
Net Art 3.5: Singularity Chic.


When you go surfclubbin', don't forget your hat.

1. Do you know who Marcel Duchamp is?

He was a skilled painter and draftsman with a keen sense of mischief.

2. Do you know who Roland Barthes is?

He was the subject of Art-Language volume 4 number 3

3. Do either of them have any bearing on art practice?

One is a long-dead iconoclast who would be aghast at the endless dross that hides behind his name, the other is a very earnest semiologist.

4. Does an artist who uses a computer have to be able to "program" it?

Does an artist who uses paint have to be able to "mix" it?

5. Is a blog a multiple choice format?

The medium is the message.

6. Does a blog limit artistic expression?

I saw a good knitted blog the other week.

7. Is "finding" enough or must one also "make?

Finding makes a found object.

8. Which is more interesting, the network or the content on the network?

The interesting content will have trouble being interesting if it is not delivered by the network.

9. Is a scan of a photo of a painting on a blog "net art"?

If it is used to make net art.

10. Which is better, blog pages that change every day or static, fixed pages?

It depends on which is the UN declaration of human rights and which is the local news.

11. Which is better, pages where new content is at the top or pages where you have to hunt for the content?

It depends on the which is the and which is the emergency services phone number list.

12. Is speed a virtue on the Internet or is slowness a valid experience?

It depends on whether the slowness is due to considered pacing of content or to lag.

13. Broken links: cool or uncool?

I just use the wayback machine.

Coding a custom 404 page is cool, though.

14. Which is the best way to communicate--email ListServs or blog comments?

Are you or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?

15. Is the design of a page more important or the content on the page?

How do you separate them in net art?

16. Are default templates unartistic?

They are the blank canvasses of information culture.

17. Are computers good and are they helping us to be a better species?

Beware teleology.

18. Should every artwork question its own means of implementation?

Any implementation contains its own immanent critique.

19. Is an artwork an individual statement in space and time or could it be cumulative?

It's very hard to nominate something cumulatively.

20. When a group of artists agree on a set of conventions is that significant or insignificant?

If they create anything of interest they will break them within ten seconds.