Week 12 – ‘But is it Art?’

Whitelaw (2012) draws upon a good idea about generative art. He states that traditional media is a great medium for generative art and design, particularly the ‘lush tangibility of traditional media’ (Whitelaw, 2012). Likewise, I think, England’s Vide-Uhh video is a great example of the use of traditional media as a form of generative art. In this video, the man is basically pressing and prodding the inside of a VCR as it is being recorded. I am not sure if my interpretation is correct. However, I feel that this media art draws great alignment to how the brain works and in a sense the image disruption in the video is somewhat metaphorical. It may be interpreted as another version of our human pain sensory in an electronic form and it feels relatable for me. However, another way of looking at it in another artistic manner, I believe we get more insight into technology itself and viewing the video camera as more humanistic. Somehow, I feel that it’s a view that tells us that technology is levelling the playing field against humans which comes back to the quote by Einstein, “…technology is exceeding humanity…”

Whitelaw (2013) also suggests that in the digital generative scene the ‘look’ is seen as more valued than the concept. However, there is often a narrative inside these ‘retinal’ generative artworks (Whitelaw, 2013). I feel that Vivid Sydney, particularly the light display on the Museum of Contemporary art, is a digital generative art work that has a great narrative which can be interpreted subjectively. Likewise in the Intimate Transaction, Vivid Sydney uses many forms of visual and sound design creating many different abstract sounds and feels enlightening to watch (Armstrong, 2005). I recently went to view Vivid Sydney and every single time you experience the projections I have different perspectives and emotions. Perhaps it is the different aesthetics and abstract nature which leaves me in awe.

References

Whitelaw, Mitchell (2012) ‘An Interview with Paul Prudence (Neural 40)’ The Teeming Void, <http://teemingvoid.blogspot.com/2012/01/interview-with-paul-prudence-for-neural.html >

Armstrong, Keith (2005) ‘Intimate Transactions: The Evolution of an Ecosophical Networked Practice’, the Fibreculture Journal 7, <http://seven.fibreculturejournal.org/fcj-047-intimate-transactions-the-evolution-of-an-ecosophical-networked-practice/ >

ARTS3091 – Week 11

In my perspective, the future has become an unintentional haunt for many humans. Derrida (1993) first presented this idea of hauntology which is the known as the ‘past in the present’. How does this concept relate to media? It definitely can be haunting for us all with no knowledge of the future of technology, media and its effects on culture now. I believe the past, present and future interconnected.

Rushkoff (2012) talks about the struggle we are having with the new relationship to time. We live in the now and ‘priorities of this moment seem to be everything’ (Rushkoff, 2012). He explains the idea that there is no sense of the future as things are changing so fast that we are losing our ability to cope even in the present (Rushkoff, 2012). The 5 main ways in which we’re struggling include narrative collapse, digiphrenia, overwinding, fractalnoia and apolcalypto (Rushkoff, 2013).

With regards to the narrative collapse, Rushkoff (2012) points out that we have lost the linear stories and are now presented with a “new path to sense-making…more like an open game than a story”. Kony 2012 is a great example of this change as there is no concrete beginning and end of this phenomenon. We, as users of the internet, wait to react and we responded with millions of views as a proposed act on mass against political issues.

The statement in the image is true, particularly with digiphrenia. The whole idea of digiphrenia, which is ‘how technology lets us be in more than one place’, creates this sense of slacktivism (Rushkoff, 2012). In my opinion, the quote seems to suggest that humans are being overcome by technology and we are more reliant on it now than we were decades ago.

Perhaps, slacktivism is a way we deal with these overwhelming amounts of technology. It lets us live in two worlds (Rushkoff, 2012). How I see it is that technology is unintentionally meshing these two worlds together. As Rushkoff (2012) says, we don’t know how to cope with the many different types of new technology.

It isn’t the haunting of the future but of how the present shapes our future I believe.

References

Rushkoff D, 2012, ‘Present Shock’ < http://www.rushkoff.com/present-shock/>

ARTS3091 Week 9

I believe each fragmented piece of metal, yearning to cover the empty and lifeless gate, is like a collaboration of ideas building towards a common goal. I believe collaboration allows us to make society better and culture richer. Much like Cain (2012) says, new group think provides so much knowledge that even the introverted individuals are extroverted enough to exchange and provide ideas. Collaboration feels as if it surrounds me in university works and as the old saying goes, two heads definitely work better than one (Michael D. Gershon)

As a user myself, we as individuals feel powerless. However, as seen from many campaigns like Kony 2012, users in mass can promote cultural change (Coalition of the Willing, 2010). Much like Wikipedia, this image explains that mass, like a social organisation, allows people all over the world to be able to engage and collaborate together to form a spectacular piece, even for political movements or activism (Coalition of the Willing, 2010). These ‘swarms’ can help us to picture and shed light on different world issues (Coalition of the Willing, 2010).

From the techniques of ‘swarming’ and collaboration, are offered a point of departure for a new kind of politics (Jellis, 2009). Although there is much controversy surrounding Kony 2012, I think that new media has allowed people to be hand in hand when dealing with political issues involving Kony.

References

Cain S, (2012) ‘The Rise of the New Groupthink’, The New York Times, January 13, <http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/15/opinion/sunday/the-rise-of-the-new-groupthink.html >

Knife P, Rayner,T, Robson S, (2010) Coalition of the Willing < http://coalitionofthewilling.org.uk/ >.

Jellis, T (2009) ‘Disorientation and micropolitics: a response’, spacesof[aesthetic]experimentation, <http://www.spacesofexperimentation.net/montreal/disorientation-and-micropolitics-a-response/

ARTS3091 Week 8

Big politics: The Fate of the State

This week, the role of ‘old’ and new media in governance is being discussed with regards to transparency and government 2.0.

The 60min film, Us Now (2009) presents a lot of insight into the concepts of transparency and Government 2.0. It reveals that collaboration and peer-to-peer sharing helps unbundle and reconstitute what a government is (Us Now, 2009). Perhaps even what a government does, much like the action taken after the Kony 2012 online campaign became viral. The ability to collaborate and share has allowed users to relive this ‘community spirit’, that was prominent years ago, which can now be experienced by interacting via online mediums (SNS, blogs, forums). Although there are still many trust issues against strangers online, trust and safety are integral for government 2.0 (Us Now, 2009).  This social trust has been re-established through social media and has allowed for greater group action (Us Now, 2009). ‘Us’ as a part of Government 2.0 can be low cost and more efficient than an official government (Us Now, 2009). As Styles (2009) states, “…so many areas of government policy and service that might be improved by some citizen collaboration…”However, citizen governance will also be categorised into federal, state and local in which it actually limits the ability to improve certain services (Styles, 2009).

Although there is a lot of controversy surrounding Kony 2012, it is a great example of the collaboration of community. I feel it demonstrates the positive aspects of Government 2.0. The film has been viewed 70 million times, primarily on Facebook. Through the peer-to-peer sharing and commenting, the ‘community spirit’ of the younger generation has re-established greater group action on the Kony issue. It also reinforces the idea on “targeted transparency” which is a rule that signifies the data and presents it in a way that conveys meaningful data, similar to the presentation of the issue of Kony with the use of high quality videos (Lessig, 2010). As Lessig (2010) states, users are too smart and do not focus on issues that are insignificant. Due to the attention span problem, the high production valued film of Kony 2012 simplified the Kony issue with the high quality video, clear parth, messaging, driven deadline, credibility and user-friendly tools (Marquis & Walsh, 2012). Unfortunately, this style of film was under a lot of scrutiny.  However, due to this viral ‘community spirit’, the US House of Representatives backed a resolution condemning Kony, support the citizen led campaign in the US and the military efforts in Afraid and pledging greater support (Curtis, 2012). As the Us Now film states, “…people can work together, asking a deeper question about government…” The example of Kony 2012 demonstrates one example of the big shift in group action that gives everyone the ability to choose whether they want to participate (Us Now, 2009). In this case, this self-organised system was able to provide motivation for greater group action against Kony.

References

Banyak Films, 2009, ‘Us Now’, < http://vimeo.com/4489849>

Curtis P, 2012, ‘Has Kony 2012 changed anything, <http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/reality-check-with-polly-curtis/2012/apr/16/has-kony-2012-changed-anything>

Lessig L, 2010, ‘Against Transparency: The perils of openness in government’, <http://www.tnr.com/article/books-and-arts/against-transparency?page=0,0>

Marquis A, Walsh T, 2012, ’20 Reasons Why KONY 2012 is the the Most Viral Advocacy Video Ever, <http://www.thedigitalnaturalist.com/home/2012/3/20/20-reasons-why-kony-2012-is-the-most-viral-advocacy-video-ev.html>

ARTS3091 Week 5

 

There are multiple realities including actual, potential, virtual, augmented, mixed, simulated etc. Media alters and intervenes with all aspects of our experience. In regards to virtual reality, it gives you insight into another paradigm. However, augmented reality seems to be a likelihood of a transformation. Every time augmented reality is mentioned, the memory of Iron Man comes to mind with his augmented computer systems.

In augmented reality, there are three ideas which will allow for a great improvement in our experiences; urban exploration, museum and shopping. As Drell mentions, with the ability to explore the urban the augmented app and interface will allow you to access city hot stops. It will also show you the exact diagram of the route to your location. Augmented reality apps can also potentially help guide you through large museums as maps often don’t go beyond external areas.  Google Maps is introducing maps for areas inside shopping complexes which will be compiled by photos that are taken internet users.

However, the experience of augmented reality feels seemingly open and a lot of the options can be opened to others. The Google Glass idea in using augmented reality which allows sound to be created by sending vibrations directly through the wearer’s skull.  Eyewear for augmented reality really is the only medium so far that will allow for the real senses to be enhanced as you will be able to view videos and images through the interface. The idea that Google and other companies are in the process of developing augmented reality glasses really does reinforce the idea that we are there.  The Golrun founder, Vivian Rosenthal, did say augmented technology is ‘not a futuristic, fringy thing… I think we’re there’. We are in this stage where augmented reality is a near future reality.

Besides idea of Google Glass, Parviz has voiced his great admiration to the Terminator films for the ‘virtual captions that enhance the cyborg’s scan of a scene’. He collaborated with Microsoft in 2011 in order to develop contact lenses that could help monitor blood sugar electronically without the hassle of needles.The contact lenses are still being tested and have not been given to consumers yet. However, the idea is innovative and we are yet to witness a lot of interesting ideas in reality. There are still processes in developing augmented reality apps.

It will definitely alter our whole experience of reality and will make us rely on our tertiary memory stored in these devices. As a media student, I am always supporting technological advancement. However, the idea that we will potentially rely on augmented reality entirely is a bit worrying. Media will definitely alter the way we interact with the social. It will demonstrate the human and technological advancement which is a positive aspect.

References

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/google/9918794/Google-Glass-the-scientists-behind-Googles-augmented-reality-glasses.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/google/9843176/Google-Glass-uses-human-skull-to-transmit-sound.html

http://online.wsj.com/article/PR-CO-20130417-906417.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

http://mashable.com/2012/12/19/augmented-reality-city/

http://mashable.com/2013/02/08/augmented-reality-future/

ARTS3091 Week 4

This week’s idea revolves around how our experience is constituted or interfered by media. I shall examine a few ideas.

Ideas will be outlined to explain memory and its relation to media. As Boris and Hansen state, there are three types of memory, ‘primary retention’, ‘secondary memory’ and ‘tertiary memory’. ‘Primary retention’ refers to how we experience the passing of the past. On the other hand, ‘secondary memory’ is the act of ‘recollection in which we recount the events of a memory. As Husserl explains, “it is tertiary memory that introduces secondary memory into primary retention”. ‘Tertiary memory’ is experience and memory that has been recorded and allows the consciousness to relive the moment without living through it again. In other words, ‘tertiary memory’ relies on the technical to support and provides context for all memory. ‘Tertiary memory’ can include the ancient Greek technique of noting memory by writing. It definitely places a big role now in our experiences through blogging and vlogging. Also, Facebook with their timeline layout that helps us to outline our experiences from the past.

There was a great excerpt in the Inception and Philosophy book that outlines the correlation between memory and perception. Botz-borstein states that “memory has an odd and covariant relation to present perception”. Botz-borstein brings up a good idea in which we need our personal past experiences in order to interpret our present perceptions. Inception demonstrates the great and intense connection Cobb has to his memory of his wife, Mal. Likewise, we are bound by our past experiences and memories. How much of it is ‘ours’? How believable is it?

This relates to the idea of mnemotechnics which is the crisis in the contemporary ‘ecology of the mind’. Media is influencing our sense of the ‘natural’ or even what ‘culture’ is.  Our ‘tertiary memory’ is becoming more and more influenced by media techniques of recording memory. I don’t know what to think anymore.

References

Boris M, Hansen N, 2004, New Philosophy for a New Media, MIT, USA

Botz-bornstein, 2011, Inception and Philosophy: Ideas to die for, Carus Publishing Company, USA

ARTS3091 Week 3

In the latest blog, there was a mention of an ‘ecology’. However, the idea of a ‘media ecology’ will be explored in depth. In the past, ‘media ecology’ was defined as the study of media as environments. Fuller states that “…’media ecology’ describes a kind of environmentalism: using a study of media to sustain a relatively stable notion of human culture”. It refers to the understanding of the human culture in terms of media and media technology.

This idea of metacommunication reflects our ‘media ecology’ as an idea that everything is interrelated regarding technology, media and culture. As stated by Deitz, “A media ecosystem – a phenomenon in which journalism is a joint project between journalists, non-journalists, accidental journalists, bloggers, politicians, celebrities, and the general public.” It reinforces the many platforms of user-shared content and information in order to share information and inform individuals.

This ‘media ecosystem’ has developed over the many years through the ways individuals use to internet. Technology has excelled to an extent that individuals are able to advocate for themselves through many platforms of media. Through the many ‘media events’ made from Julian Assange’s exploitation of many different political leaders which has greatly informed internet users. The important aspect about our ‘media ecology’ is the access we obtain from our media and how we are forced to utilize this access. It reinforces the shift in the way we define culture and how we culturally live which has altered the way we have been influenced by technology. As Deitz points out from a blog, ‘Big Brother is now us’. This notion of human culture has now altered as media technology has allowed us to be produced culture change through collaboration, transparency and participation. It has been enabled by SNS and blogs that allow people to freely participate in this global community of the internet.

Due to copyright of this image, there is a link available: http://flic.kr/p/5eP4fv
It reinforces the idea that human culture has been changed and the ‘media ecology’ is a reflection of how technology, communication and information play a significant part in our lives. The image reflects to interaction with this technologies that is merely a machine. However, the virtual idea of a hand signifies the access and advocacy that has altered the way we utilize technology.

This quote summarizes the ‘media ecology’ idea: “…Matter of how media of communication affect human perception, understanding, feeling, and value; and how our interaction with media facilitates or impedes our chances of survival.” It reinforces the change in cultural values as a ‘global community’.

References

http://www.media-ecology.org/media_ecology/

Fuller, Matthew (2005) ‘Introduction: Media Ecologies’ in Media Ecologies: Materialist Energies in Art and Technoculture Cambridge, MA; MIT Press

http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=11410&page=1

ARTS3091 Week 2

The problem that makes our culture become a machinic ‘ecology’. There is this idea that we are changing ourselves to fit our technology which has established a sort of machinic culture. It is no longer the case that technology is recreated to fit our needs. Without this idea of a machinic assemblage, there wouldn’t be this so called culture.

However, the technological machinic assemblage has become the culture of humans. As Marimba Ani said, “culture is a people’s immune system”. An example of this idea is with the use of smartphones, computers and tablets which includes the social, technological, conceptual and desirable machines. It is our culture to be utilizing at least three pieces of technology.

Now, a lot of individuals have felt that three of these items are necessary for this technological age. As a result, it reinforces the idea that it has become a machinic ‘media ecology’. For example, most individuals at university own three items, smartphone, computer and a tablet. The idea that individuals have to be connected and communicate online wherever has created a new type of online culture with the utilisation of new technology. These technologies can be said to be before culture. However, the technologies are now portrayed as desirable commodities that shape the definition of what culture is. It reinforces the idea in technological determinism that “we have no choice but to adopt this technology”.

This link really does question technologies power in terms of how we are becoming more dependent on technology. During one of the TED talk ‘How Technology Evolves’ , it discusses the evolution of technology. This TED talk, at first, seemed to be talking about the negative ideas of technology. However, it gave me great insights into the idea that this machinic assemblage that we should take responsibility in determining the true differences of each person. This ‘machinic ecology’ helps us to determine each individual’s difference. It is what technology wants. Kelly states an important point in which individuals are utilizing it as a medium to explore life and determine what its use should be. Technology should be alternated to suit our needs as well as interconnecting  using these mediums.

References

Fuller, Matthew (2005) ‘Introduction: Media Ecologies’ in Media Ecologies: Materialist Energies in Art and Technoculture Cambridge, MA; MIT Press

Murphie, Andrew and Potts, John (2003) ‘Theoretical Frameworks’ in Culture and Technology London: Palgrave Macmillan

ARTS1091 Week 1

When I attempt to piece together the definition of media ‘events’, often examples related to viral videos and campaigns arise in my mind. In order for me to reflect on the lecture material, I am going to summarize the meaning of this idea, events.

In order to understand media ‘events’, there is a need to understand the interrelation between media ‘events’, media change and media, cultural and social change. Media ‘events’ occur due to the cultural and social change in the way people use technology and their values. There are subtle changes that we often do not recognise and is often only understood only on the surface. These ‘events’ often have a beginning and an end. Therefore signifies that they are not permanent. 3D printing and Occupy Wall Street are examples of such media ‘events’

As Couldry et al (p 2, 2010) explains that media ‘events’ have three levels; syntactic, semantic and pragmatic. In regards to the syntactic level, media ‘events’ are  the ‘interruptions of routine’ in which are live, pre-planned and organised outside the media. Semantic level includes, ceremonial and and message of reconciliation. The last level, enabling large audiences to view events in a festive style.

Kony 2012 is an example of the syntactic level of media ‘events’ which is a pre-planned marketing technique. During the temporary popularity, it was able to get world-wide recognition and attention.

  • Kony 2012 – During the explosive period in which the video of Kony 2012 went viral, the cultural and social values have definitely altered. Although many of the teenagers are defined as egotistical and self centred in regards to the Gen Y, a lot of teenagers felt compassionate towards this campaign. Although a lot have argued that it may not be as sincere as the video may portray it to be, this media ‘event’ even populated Facebook and Twitter feeds. A lot of news channels had commented on this video as a phenomenon that had become viral with just 48 hours of contact with social media. This viral video and campaign may not be seen as a media ‘event’. However, it has reinforced the new idea of campaigning. This campaign was an event as it had an amazing beginning and definite decline in its end due to the scandals with the director and chairman of Kony 2012. This ‘event’ also reinforced the power of the social media and the change in the human online activity.
  • If you want to refresh your memory, I’ve embed the video just below. 


Likewise with the Tohoku earthquake in Japan which was viewed worldwide on TV, due to the technology that gives us to power to record live and allow us to experience tragedies second hand. This media ‘event’ is an example of pragmatic ‘events’. This disaster had worldwide coverage from many different countries. It is similar to the 3/11 event in which it enabled us to view these tragedies on TV. The Tohoku incident gives us a broader perspective and also reinforces this idea of public journalism. These events have been a mediated representation through these mediums.

These media events reflect a cultural and social change of what is important to individuals now. It also reflects the changes to real events that have been mediated by our technology

References

Click to access p715.pdf

Couldry N, Hepp A, Krotz F, p 2-6, 2010, Media Events in a Global Age, Routledge, USA

http://thesocialskinny.com/kony-2012-proof-of-the-positive-power-of-social-media-or-its-danger/