Sunday, 27 June 2010


Story 8

Cartographies of Constraint


My parents always criticised me for my fear of bridges, which I now know is called ‘gephyrophobia’. We lived so close to Waterloo Bridge my parents were exasperated by the limitations my phobia created, by what they characterised as my ‘scenes’ and ‘tantrums’ every time we crossed to the North. I didn’t want to be criticised for my fear of bridges. I wanted them to accommodate it, but this was not possible. My father would carry me across the bridge screaming. My mother would stride across it, leaving me to choose between the twin horrors of bridge crossing or maternal abandonment. At about the age of five I began to devise strategies that would nowadays be characterised as tantamount to a neurotic compulsion, but which at the time I found absorbing and satisfactorily distracting.



Tunnels have never disturbed me. I could cycle to Greenwich and cross under the Thames, or, if I had the money take the underground from Waterloo to Embankment. It fascinated me to learn that London has not always been resplendent with bridges, until relatively late in its history I would have been able to traverse north and South via myriad ferries, and thence drawn no attention to my phobia. But, as the London of my youth was, as far as I was concerned, over accommodated with bridges, I began necessarily to impose a range of restrictions and complex procedures upon myself, like an inverted version of the Bridges of Göttingen problem. I challenged myself to move through London with the maximum amount of riverine proximity without actually crossing any bridges. Though I have no liking for railway or motorway bridges, it is particularly bridges over bodies of water that terrify me. But my permutations and schedules of algorithms somehow mitigated my fear. In this way I gradually also eroded my desire for parental praise. My parents had no appreciation for my search algorithms so instead I sought praise from myself and lived in fear of my own disapprobation. I was like a rat who had built a maze for himself from which I desperately needed to escape, by exhausting all sets of combinations. A problem I am still trying to solve.

Lesson: What seems like a solution to one problem can cause even more inconvenience than the originating predicament.


Notes:

The New York Thruway Authority will lead gephyrophobiacs over the Tappan Zee Bridge. A driver can call the authority in advance and arrange for someone to drive the car over the bridge for them. The authority performs the service about six times a year.[
^ a b c Foderaro, Lisa W. (January 8, 2008). "To Gephyrophobiacs, Bridges Are a Terror.". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/08/nyregion/08bridge.html?_r=1&oref=slogin&pagewanted=all. Retrieved 2008-01-08. "Mrs. Steers, 47, suffered from a little-known disorder called gephyrophobia, a fear of bridges. And she had the misfortune of living in a region with 26 major bridges, whose heights and spans could turn an afternoon car ride into a rolling trip through a haunted house."
^ "Gephyrophobia: A Fear Of Crossing Bridges. Even Before The Minnesota Collapse, Many Have Severe Phobia About Bridges.". CBS News. August 10, 2007. http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/08/10/eveningnews/main3156354.shtml. Retrieved 2008-01-08. "The monster she fears is the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in Maryland. At four miles (6 km) long and 185 feet (56 m) high, Ayers says the thought of driving the bridge - with the way it rises straight in the air - raises a sense of panic in her."
^ "Reasonable fear or bridge phobia?". USA Today. August 8, 2007. http://www.mywire.com/pubs/USATODAY/2007/08/08/4184015?extID=10051. Retrieved 2008-01-08. "Jerilyn Ross, a psychotherapist and president of the Anxiety Disorder Association of America, notes that phobias are more than just being afraid of a certain object; they are marked by panic. Someone with gephyrophobia is afraid of panicking on a bridge, not necessarily the bridge itself, she says."

Tuesday, 22 June 2010


formatting below is all wrong so here's a screen grab with the correct command
Well apologies to Shakespeare but I've been experimenting with Awk (Gawk)
a programming langauge for matching patterns and sortig texts which is also quite fun
for generative text, here
printing only lines with progressively less than a certain number of characters
C:\Program Files\GnuWin32\bin>awk "length <>

When in disgrace with fortune and menÆs eyes
I all alone beweep my outcast state,
And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries,
And look upon myself, and curse my fate,
Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,
FeaturÆd like him, like him with friends possessÆd,
Desiring this manÆs art, and that manÆs scope,
With what I most enjoy contented least;
Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising,
Haply I think on thee,ùand then my state,
Like to the lark at break of day arising
From sullen earth,
sings hymns at heavenÆs gate;
For thy sweet love rememberÆd such wealth brings
That then I scorn to change my state with kings.



C:\Program Files\GnuWin32\bin>awk "length <54">awk "length <44" shak.txt

I all alone beweep my outcast state,
And look upon myself, and curse my fate,
Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,
With what I most enjoy contented least;
Haply I think on thee,ùand then my state,
Like to the lark at break of day arising


Monday, 21 June 2010

Story 5
Embryogenesis and The South East Pole


I want to talk to you about motivation techniques. Perhaps you think such techniques imply only a desire to change one’s state? What we could call ‘kinaesthetic internal representations’, that we wish though these representations to engender more interesting sensory experiences? But this is not what I am going to address here. We will start by thinking about the area of south London known as ‘The Cut’.

The Cut may be instrumental in constructing for us a form of counter-actualization, an ontological cut. Let The Cut become a ‘motionless, timeless organizing centre called a phase singularity….a place where an otherwise pervasive rhythm fades into ambiguity – like the South Pole where the 24 hour time zones converge and the sun merely circles along the horizon’ (Deleuze in Delanda, 2002). Let The Cut become the South East Pole, an N dimensional state space. As we walk through The Cut together in this enhanced geometrical state let us try to identify truly recurrent topological features and long term behaviours.

I urge you to keep returning here over the next year or so. This exercise will only work in longitudinal conditions. What we are looking for are recurrent singularities, candidates to replace essences, recurrent sequences, such as the same conversation heard at the same place and time, day in day out. Person A recurrently crossing the same road at the same location X. Perhaps I may quote from Delanda at length once again with an apposite metaphor - that of a fertilised egg ‘prior to unfolding into a fully developed organism with differential tissues and organs (a process known as embryogenesis.) While in essentialist interpretations of embryogenesis tissues and organs are supposed to be already given in the egg (preformed as it were, and hence having a clear and distinct nature) most biologists today have given up preformism and accepted the idea that differential structures emerge progressively as the egg develops. The egg is not of course an undifferentiated mass: it possesses an obscure yet distinct structure defined by zones of biochemical concentration and by polarities established by the asymmetrical position of the yolk (or nucleus). But even though it does possess the necessary biochemical materials and genetic information, these materials and information do not contain a clear and distinct blueprint of the final organisation’ (Delanda, 2002).
Such laws of process must be partially observable here if we make the requisite level of ontological commitment. Begin now, continue as you start. Remember what we are calculating here, (as we were in story two) are degrees of freedom.
Story 2

Ten degrees of freedom in a bicycle


If I am supposed to be writing an autobiography there is a fundamental flaw in the contract which my publishers have hitherto not noticed - there is no real ‘I’ to autobiographize. Although it is true I use this solitary symmetrical construction on a habitual basis. This ‘I’ of which there is no solid empirical evidence represents a vast number of un-useful habits – the continuous construction of un-resourceful representations, self destructive symbols, phobias and fear. Taking a small stroll through Borough Market will expose a cornucopia of such fears, the fear of not having material things and sensuous experiences, to name just two. You may retrace these steps yourself; beginning perhaps by the ship of avaricious cruelty we currently call the Golden Hind. A boat that represents every malignancy you can care to name. Start there, at this mendacious centre piece of Thames-side reverie.

Have I lost you yet? Who are you anyway? Those of you who are expecting to read a scientific treatise should already be dismayed by the subjective slant of my writing today. Others may be wondering what on earth I am doing using such resources – as the phobia, the displacement, the un-resourceful representation. Are these theoretical resources? Are you interested? Do they fit into a programming language as remotely valid entities?

My goal may once have been to make you all say a resounding communal ‘yes’ following a meticulous submission to the elegance of my logic. But there is no longer an ‘I’ to either persuade or be persuaded.

We are largely sets of unobservable relations, to even use that term implies an anthropocentrism I cannot support, nor yet can I support any form of essentialism. This is the world as I encounter it today. Tomorrow I plan to write a chapter on differential geometry and group theory that will clarify my slippery realism. I will present the case for manifolds, transformation groups and vector fields as fitting processes for a differential morphogenesis that works across both time and space, a philosophical terrain that consists of both the singular and the ordinary. In short a multiplicity, a set of relations and a rate of change.

INSTRUCTIONS:

Walk from the Golden Hind to Borough Market. You will surely become increasingly aware of gustatory representations. Can you resist them? What happens if you do? After 20 minutes suspend resistance, now what do you do? Write down exactly what happens. Describe before, after and during. Describe urges, flavours and regrets. Next time you come here do the same exercise. Note carefully any differences between each visit. In this way you will understand your own degrees of freedom.

Sunday, 20 June 2010


Story 7

Nagging Voices

The largest of Ivan’s notebooks was held together by green garden twine.
I begin to read it as the light of the longest day faded:

‘The memories of what I have witnessed act as a filter, but they are only a map of these events and not the actual terrain upon which they unfolded. In 1963 Dr Eee at the Callois Wing of ST Thomas’s hospital advised me to listen to my own language in deconstructing these memories, in order to expose my own filters, the deletions distortions and generalisations that I have unconsciously passed these memories through and made into a baseline habitual state.

My representational filters, explained Dr Eee, include the feelings both inside and outside of the body. But unfortunately I was not in a position to identify these apparently polarised locations. I heard a voice describing these disembodied kinaesthetic phrases: “there is somewhere solid, tickle, preserve pain in the neck warm”. Dr Eee told me that it was my own voice recorded under hypnosis, but I did not recognise it. I was advised by Dr Eee to use breaks and redirections such as Goto and Delay – much like those used in my early computer programs, in fact I was constantly minded of these similarities which Dr Eee seemed oblivious too.

I wanted him to praise me for my superhuman efforts in deconstructing my habitual predicates, or the language of my preferred representational system, but this desire was itself characterised by Dr Eee as an equally filtered preference for self-talk, which Eee called an auditory digital preference. This was revealed in my frequent use of words such as sense, learn, perceive conceive and process. I nagged at myself continually with these vocabularies, to the degree that they pulled me into a semi-hypnotic negative trance, in which I was profoundly entrenched in my own thinking and negative imaginings took me deeper and deeper into consistent anchors or triggers. In a sense I was hypnotizing myself with my own language. But was Dr Eee right in his conviction that changing my language would change my life? Wasn’t the fact that I was so often lost in space evidence that my location in the world was dependent on more than language alone?’

The more I read the more it seemed that Ivan had spent almost all his adult life trying to answer these questions.


////////////////////////////////////////////////

Story number one. Gephyrophobia

At the top of the trunk there’s a small brown leather notebook, like most of Ivan’s notebooks, bursting at the seams. Scratched stained battered as if it has spent a lifetime at war with itself. Loosened pages fall out of the book as I open it. The pages contain what seem like random jottings, mathematical formulas, flow charts and maps. I pick up one of these chaotic pages and read Ivan’s hurriedly scribbled words. Everything he writes appears to have been executed in a maddening rush – time is always chasing Ivan.

‘Uncomfortable memories merge with my sense of the present. I’m minded of the dank riverside house of my youth. The rancid riverside fat of the ancient pariah industries leaks into every room, through the revenant pores of my slaughterer ancestors.

I roll these ancient thoughts into a small damp ball and fire them way over the dull sad Morley street houses or drown them in a glass of water. As if a house could ever heal, make happy or pacify a noon-day demon. My secret imaginative background - this street righted through a simple shell script I thought might filter and sort all the stinking noise for me, here with this command:

sort <>> sort.txt

Such a command I once thought might sort and recombine the chaotic stench here into palatable new meanings. Arthur C. Clarke knew this too int The Nine Billion Names of God, which features a Tibetan monastery with an automatic sequence computer, “compiling a list which shall contain all the possible names of God."

Somewhere there is a bridge to a sorted world. But unfortunately I have lived my whole life long with a fear of bridges. Gephyrophobia. Though I have tried to recreate bridge like structures in my code, Dra/Dar is a bridge too far.

//////////////////////////////



Should anchors tower? Does anchors laugh after states? A required tune returns underneath the coupled bitmap. Why can't anchors sock states? 2:36 AM Dec 16th, 2009 via web
A history inspires heuristics. Writing turns heuristics. The skull conforms heuristics. Heuristics overloads writing. 2:35 AM Dec 16th, 2009 via web
Wittgenstein invented the Twitter, but look how it has degraded since the Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. Degraded into garbled formulas. 2:23 AM Dec 16th, 2009 via web
The boredom seats the estimated smoker. 2:21 AM Dec 16th, 2009 via web
transaction inability less razor 2:21 AM Dec 16th, 2009 via web
Air museum sitting damned. My mind is randomised from the sub zero chill. Some of my synapses need anti-freeze 2:20 AM Dec 16th, 2009 via web
I welcome the resumption of our dialogue, no matter how befuddling. 12:55 AM Dec 14th, 2009 via web
My follower, mjax11, has resumed contact, even though it takes the form of cryptic missives and mystifying alluisons to computer components. 12:55 AM Dec 14th, 2009 via web
With each breakfast, however poor, I demolish one of my most cherished assumptions - it is habit I can reccomend to everyone... 12:49 AM Dec 14th, 2009 via web
They say a woman is as old as she looks before breakfast. I think the same applies to men, I look and feel as old as I am before breakfast. 12:46 AM Dec 14th, 2009 via web
My llife has been rife with poor breakfasts, flat lunches, and miserable dinners. 12:44 AM Dec 14th, 2009 via web
Half a cracker with mayonnaise - it's hardly a breakfast of champions. 12:42 AM Dec 14th, 2009 via web
Day 5 12:41 AM Dec 14th, 2009 via web
****************************************************************************************** 12:41 AM Dec 14th, 2009 via web
Lieing at anchor is no more than the avoidance of unpleasant sensory input, which, as we have established, is a specific form of addiction. 1:19 PM Dec 8th, 2009 via web
A ship should not rely on one small anchor, nor should life rest on a single hope , yet majax11, we must neither drift nor lie at anchor. 1:17 PM Dec 8th, 2009 via web
We trap ourselves via a form of softened embedding, auto-hypnotic perceptual positions naturalised over decades of sleep-walking. 1:14 PM Dec 8th, 2009 via web
The zone you are stuck in is not the sort of <> I was discussing , it sounds more like a conceptual <>. 1:10 PM Dec 8th, 2009 via web
The sun moves in silence mjAX11 1:04 PM Dec 8th, 2009 via web
1956:Everyday I had to walk across WaterlooBridge to get to work, though I realised the irrationality of my fear I was still gripped by it. 10:30 AM Dec 5th, 2009 via web
As a child suffered acutely from <>, the abnormal and persistent fear of bridges, which was harsh as I lived so close to one 10:23 AM Dec 5th, 2009 via web
Maintaining an auditory grapnel is not the same as gratifying the desire for pleasant sensory experiences or the avoidance of harsh sounds. 10:20 AM Dec 5th, 2009 via web
Grapnel, or the conception of<>may be transferred to affective modes through state association. I reccomend the auditory hook. 10:16 AM Dec 5th, 2009 via web
How can you become confident,cheerful, creative & calm in the blink of an eye depsite the immanentburp, gallopingpulse,sheer_pointlessness? 10:08 AM Dec 5th, 2009 via web
Today I am going to tell you about anchors, even though rather adrift this wintry post meridiem and gaseous with a light mackeral lunch. 7:40 AM Dec 5th, 2009 via web
Day 4 7:37 AM Dec 5th, 2009 via web
****************************************************************************************** 7:36 AM Dec 5th, 2009 via web
Where are my anchors? 2:08 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Where are the anchors of these liminal dreamers, who are unable to distinguish if a vaguely recalled dream actually occurred? 2:07 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
With this information one might ask what becomes of children born on bridges? 1:54 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Those who remain in a state between two other states may become permanently liminal. The brdige is a hyperstructure in permanent twilight. 1:51 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
I rewind to the bridge silent bare, ships, towers, domes, theatres,liminal temples, shielding from those sharpening sounds . 1:49 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Guillemets ( « » ) or angle points, help me to communicate difficlut memories. « or tainted formalisations of expression»in 140 characters 1:29 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Another point: . A bullet point to slow myself down. My heart is pounding. Secondly: I do not like discussing my aversion to certain sounds 1:23 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Their ghosts were too hungry. No one had enough food to keep them away, wherever I went they would call out the names of sickly neighbours. 1:20 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
I feared the unwanted sounds as much as I craved the city's music. But I had vivid imaginings of revenant harassment from all the dead Dârs. 1:17 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
On the bridge there were always cold echoes. Screeches on the grey road from North to South. I heard revenants of the returning dead eating, 1:12 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Scene 6 concerns a desire not to have uninteresting sensory experiences, which you will soon discover are manifest in auditory modalities. 12:48 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
IT HAS TAKEN ME 68 TWEETS TO REACH A POINT OF INITMACY WITH MY FOLLOWERS. To reach my Waterloo Bridge moment. Scene 6 in this story. Anchors 12:47 PM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
"English for avoiding inter-subjective contamination" - an intensive course, WORTH 20 CREDIT POINTS on the Ivan Dâr Education Plan. 11:47 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Slow down reader. Bullet points are good for undermining rappport and for injecting a tone of efficiency into sensitive isssues.Avoid warmth 11:41 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Transition words and phrases such as "secondly" or "another point." are a good way of slowing down rapacious readers or excited people. 11:37 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Incubation Rest. Marmite Bagel. Management of the creative process. Raw materials bubble up in a power nap. Conk for illumination. Reframe. 11:25 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Soft consensus should be avoided. My own critical path analysis conked out today. I blame a heavy lunch, a restless night,dandruff blizzards 11:20 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Perhaps you are thinking I have been stung by my own Strategic Community Displacement program?. Perhaps you are right. Clever old reader :( 11:15 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
...that generate creative failure, I allowed MJX11 to compromise my navigational integrity, hence the undesirable location of the B-paradox 11:14 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
We never know what we have lost until we are left. Once more I am struck by the so called 'Basingstoke paradox', -compromises in destination 11:12 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
....me down this morning, the winds and the waves of desertion favour the finest navigators but I am spinning in circles, I am awash & left 11:10 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
The minute we are born we are abandoned by life. Likewise my follower MJX11 appears to have abandoned me. Even such la ittle absence weighs 11:07 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
Day 3 11:03 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 11:03 AM Dec 4th, 2009 via web
But what IS Strategic Community Displacement I hear you ask? 1:49 AM Dec 3rd, 2009 via web
...on the spur of the moment yesterday, between considering a marmite sandwich for lunch and battling a raging snow storm of dandruff....... 1:48 AM Dec 3rd, 2009 via web
Imagine, the entire population of the planet all all following the randomly conceived Strategic Community Displacement program I made up... 1:46 AM Dec 3rd, 2009 via web
likewise:over quarter of a million followers by the end of the century and the vast majority of the world's inhabitants by the next millenia 1:44 AM Dec 3rd, 2009 via web
So 2 days in and I already have a 'follower', a simple mathematical projection would indicate 365 followers a year thence, 3650 by 219 etc 1:42 AM Dec 3rd, 2009 via web
A new day a new dawn. I think I might have a marmite sandwich for lunch 1:40 AM Dec 3rd, 2009 via web
Day 2 1:39 AM Dec 3rd, 2009 via web
****************************************************************************************** 1:39 AM Dec 3rd, 2009 via web
So Mjax11has a name for me: "mr marmaite sandwich". This may be an imaginative variation on the tradition of gurus naming their followers? 11:07 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Earlier today Mjax11 called me "mr marmaite sandwich". I didn't think anything about it at the time but now it seems highly sententious. 10:59 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Logic suggests, ∴ ,that many MBA graduates could be diverted from their reflexive pathways into Strategic Community Displacement programs... 10:54 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
'Finance' is tightly linked to the global economic downturn, or 'crunch' evidence suggests new graduates are stepping onto alternate paths.. 10:47 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
yes_alt - did you get that? Day 1: One 'follower' and an emergent language transmuted by the random constrants of this particular form 10:46 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Graduates of MBA programs have a tendnecy to head straight into 'Finance' after receiving their degrees. This path can be altered! yes!_alt 10:44 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
The MBA emerged from the late 19th century as the US industrialized and companies sought scientific approaches to management..blahblah 10:39 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
I see it is actually an 'MBA,' (not MBNA)a masters degree in Business Administration. at first sight it is hard to think of anything duller. 10:37 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Is this a post-modern slap in the face for Aldus Manutius, the father of modern punctuation? To negate the subtleties of modern punctuation? 10:31 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
What exactly is an MBNA? I wanted to write that 'exactly' in italics but the twitter mechanism doesn't allow for such typographical devices 10:28 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Perhaps I should also offer my followers 'tips for getting a flat belly'? or a metaphysical form of MBNA ? Mjax11, please proffer 'feedback' 10:25 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
This follower is going to be hard work, I can see that..perhaps a few, more pliable ones will come along soon? It's like waiting for a bus. 10:14 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Mjax11 doesn't answer so soon. If a thousand suns and moons rose_they would be unable toremove_the_darkness_of_ignorance within_the_heart. 10:04 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Mjax11 - perhaps you wish to be lead from unreality to reality, from the darkness of ignorance to the light of knowledge? I can arrange that 10:00 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
naivety [naɪˈiːvtɪ], naiveté, naïveté [ˌnɑːiːvˈteɪ] n pl -ties, -tés 1. the state or quality of being naive; ingenuousness; simplicity 9:58 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Mjax11 - 'phylosophie' as you put it is indeed the metier I am offering here - perhaps you thought the reference to T-shirts was serious? 9:57 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Is this true - do you mean walnut and date? I see your spelling is of the 'improvisational' school, there's something medieval about it. 9:54 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
A follower! It begins with one little acorn of despond and soon a whole forest of oaks proliforate - where is the spell check on this thing? 9:51 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
One day in and both my Meta-Tactical Culture and Strategic Community Displacement programs are reaping benefits,just when ennui had struck! 9:49 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
They reach for modern, technological mechanisms of 'support' but they cannot articulate what 'support' might entail or where it needs to go. 9:45 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
mjax11 are you even listening? Who this mjax11? a robot! Hello mjax11, please say what you would like me to do - not roofing I hope! 9:43 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Is the leaking roof a metaphor? Has 'mjax11'considered this metaphysical aspect? So few realise their internal structures urgent need repair 9:42 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
I have a follower - the inevitable rush is begining. This one seems pre-occupied with rooves and debts, there is no spiritual content yet 9:39 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
It is evening now. I am regretting my earlier decision about the Marmite sandwich. Emptiness closes around me. A whole day wasted again. 9:34 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Withold genuine confidences or restrict them to a surface colour, I try this from minute to minute because 'confidence' implies a real man. 6:38 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
This is for amateurs! sell subjective heuristics and spread administrative overheads over a bigger operation, eschew diseconomies of scale. 6:21 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
50 pounds for a T-shirt that cost 50 pence to make.. 6:17 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
The aggregate of the cost of raw materials, the cost of manufacture, plus the cost of distribution, blah blah blah. This not the answer! 6:12 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
MOP - 'Modes of possibility' in the meta-tactical culture. Buy my DVDs! Wear T Shirts embroidered with the words: THOSE WHO DâR WIN! 6:11 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Reject logical valuations! The aggregate of the cost of raw materials, the cost of manufacture, plus the cost of distribution, embrace MOP 6:09 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
I refer of course to my 'meta-tactical culture': in which consumers see the 'product' as being worth the amount that I want it to be 6:05 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Such fnely crafted branding can be highly successful in convincing consumers to pay remarkably high prices for products that cost nothing 6:01 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Oh this is good, I can feel a power point coming on! 5:58 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
'Strategic Community Displacement' is an experiential aspect that consists of the sum of all points of symbolic 'contact' with the brand, 5:58 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
'Strategic Community Displacement', just think about it, a phrse so dilute as to allow ∞ as near nothing as makes no odds.. 5:55 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
This afternoon I threw some words together quite randomly and came up with a brand new marketing strategy for my philosophical opines - 5:51 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
We should always be prepared to learn something new 5:48 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Flexibility dwindles decade on decade, I can hardly do my own shoe laces up, let alone compress a lifetime's methodology into a letter box.. 5:47 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
What can anyone say in 140,000 words let alone 140 characters? These lexical contortions are unpleasant for a man my age, flexibility dwind- 5:45 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
A howling blizzard of dandruff engulfs me mid-afternoon 4:56 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
A quick congruency check is in order, I reccomend you do the same 4:55 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
It's too late for a marmite sandwhich now, the window of opportunity with marmite is very slender indeed 4:52 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
I have always suffered from too many followers, it is a slipper kind of curse that is difficult to convey to the unpopular 4:51 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
I have no followers as yet, but no doubt this thing will snow ball out of control very rapidly 4:50 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
I try to be trendistic by joining in with these twitts 4:50 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
nothing else is happening 4:48 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
Its clouding over rapidly 4:47 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
I think I might have a marmite sandwhich for lunch 4:40 AM Dec 2nd, 2009 via web
////////////////////////////
Another Cigraettte

Perhaps it will shock you to hear me
talking of smoking as a form of religious
practice - or rather the configuration of
smoking-subject and cigarette as an
opportunity for putting into practice Buddhist
technologies.
Another Cigarette is another sediment of me,
whatever a ‘me’ really is, this habit makes a
concrete statue out of ‘me’. I’m all habit, I’m all
fixed, that’s all there is – this addiction, nothing
else. When I took away the cigarettes there was
nothing left. As if my molecules burst their skins,
that’s how thousands of people disappear every
year, they quit smoking and slip their chains. Off
they go, into the clouds, free at last. Unless they
replace one habit with another, as we are want to do –
perhaps, for example, the habit of judging smokers.
sedimenting habits of self-construction. Is ‘I’m not a
smoker’ as much of a trap as being a smoker?

I am not talking here of orthodox health matters, and, of course, not recommending smoking. The ill health I am alluding too is metaphysical. There
Are worse habits then smoking. Hubris itself is a from of unhelpful addiction – I was once enslaved by it, as my regular readers will know. Hubris, like smoking, can teach us how vulnerable we are to fantasies of permanent self-hood, and thus to a reduction that has ensnared entire cultures and continents to chains of reasoning and representation.


Wednesday, 16 June 2010

http://www.dareinteractive.com/VAINS/Vains_girls/index.html

idea for satirical demographics

Vains 'Girls site'

Yesterday Lee and I presented our work to the art PhD group. All the questions were really useful = these were my notes, which I dont want to forget:

Who is our audience?

Do we need to target ‘an’ audience?

Is navigation and filtering a proper focus – someone suggested it wasn’t as interesting as a political focus. Or is it a political focus but we didn’t articulate that clearly enough? Somone mentioned ‘hypothesis testing’. I also thought we were doing this. What do you take from that question?

My methodology emphasises including and acknowledging the subjectivity of users (and curators, designers and programmers) as a politically and theoretically informed choice. I thought my Haraway quotes had emphasised that, but perhaps I need to rearticulate this point?

Do we really need to claim we are offering something new, or are we offering another art work in the tradition of other artworks? Should we therefore de-emphasise the ‘intra-active’ etc,
or is it that they don’t understand the significance of our computational structures?

If we do this where does it leave you as a curator?

What about the distributed, mutable and collective evolution of much ‘internet art’, including shareware – how does VAINS fit in with that? Should it stay only on the internet – can we put it in washing machines? Nintendo Wiis, TVs , rolllerskates, soft toys, furniture, supermarkets, trees, carpets etc???? What did this question mean to us – I think it was one of the most relevant and interesting. I’d like to think about this a lot more!!

Useful Cory Arcangel quote:

"Imagine me buying some video equipment off of eBay, turning it on, pressing some random buttons, and then calling whatever comes out my ‘work.’ This mind-set is the spirit of Adult Contemporary. In contrast to some of my older work, which exercised a somewhat subversive use of modern digital tools, the pieces in this show are inspired by the idea of using technology exactly as it was designed, although in a manner best described as ‘non-expert.’ What if the possibility of using a system poorly in an uneducated manner were celebrated? What if I, as an artist, attached my name to the aesthetics of different eras of technology without really bothering to do my homework or even reading the manual (so to speak)?” - Cory Arcangel [10]

Could we distribute some open software – a phone app, an autonomous art criticism machine, auto-art curation engine, etc?? Pod Casts to help people curate their own work, their lives, their stuff, things they think of as art?? Something like that?

Is the current use of emotions etc relevant? Or is it a trap or a pointless game for users, constraining them to pre-defined and not very accurate emotions as one person observed? Should we let them define their own moods or other associations, including dialogues, philosophical observations, political reactions, diatribe, code response etc, etc photos, deconstructions etc?

Should we allow ‘open curation’?


Should we try harder to seduce reluctant users?

We should refine the text free-area….it seems to really irritate people at the moment, partly because I didn’t spend much time on the icons..or layout.


Should we develop a very clear mission statement that we always outline in papers and talks – such as we are non-neutral, exploratory, a site for testing ideas, some of which we know may fail, that we do not envisage a point of closure with any of this but an ongoing set of experiments? That we don’t think we are data mining universal truths or even local truths!! But offering a wide range of investigations? (is that the right word)

Should we show more of the underlying computational structures so people understand the inherent limitations in any system and can see a human hand in the database design etc

What was the most importnat point ?

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Monday, 14 June 2010

video

South software film

Story number one. Gephyrophobia

At the top of the trunk there’s a small brown leather notebook, like most of Ivan’s notebooks, bursting at the seams. Scratched stained battered as if it has spent a lifetime at war with itself. Loosened pages fall out of the book as I open it. The pages contain what seem like random jottings, mathematical formulas, flow charts and maps. I pick up one of these chaotic pages and read Ivan’s hurriedly scribbled words. Everything he writes appears to have been executed in a maddening rush – time is always chasing Ivan.

"Uncomfortable memories merge with my sense of the present. I’m minded of the dank riverside house of my youth. The rancid riverside fat and urea stink of the ancient pariah industries leaks into every room, through the paws of my slaughterer ancestors my once rancid zygote in the centre of my mother’s equally rancid riverside womb.

I roll these ancient thoughts into a small damp ball and fire them way over the dull sad Morley street houses or drown them in a glass of water. As if a house could ever heal, make happy or pacify a noon-day demon. My secret imaginative background - this street righted through a simple shell script I thought might filter and sort all the stinking noise for me, here with this command:

"sort <>> sort.txt"

Such a command I once thought might sort and recombine the chaotic stench here into palatable new meanings. Arthur C. Clarke knew this too in The Nine Billion Names of God, which features a Tibetan monastery with an automatic sequence computer, “compiling a list which shall contain all the possible names of God."

Somewhere there is a bridge to a sorted world. But unfortunately I have lived my whole life long with a fear of bridges. Gephyrophobia. Though I have tried to recreate bridge like structures in my code, Dra/Dar is a bridge I fear I cannot Cross,


http://lucis.net/stuff/clarke/9billion_clarke.html

Sunday, 13 June 2010


Loading Yippy Cloud ...

I am knocked out reading this Cixous:
I too believe that we should only read those books that “wound” us and “stab” us, “wake us up with a blow on the head” or strike us like terrible events, that do and don’t do us good, a book “like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves,” or that is “like being banished into forests far from everyone,” or books that are “like a suicide.” Or, as he says at the end, a book “must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us.”

That is what I believe but it also saddens me because very few books are axes, very few books hurt us, very few books break the frozen sea. Those books that do break the frozen sea and kill us are the books that give us joy. Why are such books so rare? Because those who write the books that hurt us also suffer, also undergo a sort of suicide, also get lost in forests–-and this is frightening. (17-18)

Friday, 11 June 2010

main VAINS links



Link to current VAINS software:e
http://www.dareinteractive.com/VAINS/Vains_Test/vainsLinks.html
Annpying that links dont often work on this site







starts here



Starts here:

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Select your mood

Works properly at last!

http://www.dareinteractive.com/VAINS/Vains_Test/mood.html
Link text


Its official I am the world's slowest human being


/*
Eleanor Dare May 2010
Get data from database
get highest values
and make into
links for art sites



*/


$url1= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/abrahams/happymoving/";
$url2="http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/ahn/inbetween/";
$url3= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/amerika/htc1.0/";
$url4= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/andrews/";
$url5= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/biggs/echelon";
$url6= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/bravo/playingwtime/";
$url7= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/breeze/SOM/";
$url8= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/brucker_cohen/";
$url9= "http://irational.org/cgi-bin/photo/photo.pl";
$url10= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/burton/fields/";
$url1= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/cahen/louvre_01_15_05/";
$url12= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/campbell/annesykes/";
$url13= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/chatonsky/revolution_new_york/#";
$url14= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/cloninger/bubblegum/";
$url15= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/coyarzun/wIPhOME/";
$url16= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/daggett/referprint/";
$url17= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/deck/MEMORY.MIL/";
$url18= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/decologne/predator/";
$url19= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/dekok/zabnulvier/";
$url20= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/doctorhugo/dreamz/";
$url21= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/drouhin/ici/";
$url22= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/easylife.org/xxx/lo.html";
$url23= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/garrett/email_art/";
$url24= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/geuzen/brains/";
$url25= "http://www.computerfinearts.com/collection/leegte/scrollbars/main.htm";


$match = "match";
$username="secret";
$password="secret";
$database="secret";
$view = array();

mysql_connect("mysql02.iomart.com",$username,$password);


$dbuser="sec";
$dbpass="sec";
$dbname="sec"; //the name of the database
$chandle = mysql_connect("mysql02.iomart.com", $dbuser, $dbpass)
or die("Connection Failure to Database");
mysql_select_db($dbname, $chandle) or die ($dbname . " Database not found. " . $dbuser);

$mainsection="links"; //The name of the table where web links are stored

$query1="SELECT MAX(`item`), MAX(`item1`), MAX(`item2`), MAX(`item3`),MAX(`item4`), MAX(`item5`), MAX(`item6`),MAX(`item7`) ,MAX(`item7`) FROM Vains_test1 WHERE mood = 'sad'"; //select all approved links that belong to the current category
$result = mysql_db_query($dbname, $query1) or die("Failed Query of " . $query1); //do the query


$item1 = $result[3];

while($thisrow=mysql_fetch_row($result))
{
$i=0;
while ($i < mysql_num_fields($result))
{
$field_name=mysql_fetch_field($result, $i);
//echo $thisrow[$i] . "
"; //Display all the fields on one line

$item = $thisrow[0];
$item1 = $thisrow[1];
$item2 = $thisrow[2];
$item3 = $thisrow[3];
$item4 = $thisrow[4];
$item5 = $thisrow[5];
$item6 = $thisrow[6];
$item7 = $thisrow[7];
$item8 = $thisrow[8];
$i++;
}
/*
echo "
"; //put a break after each database entry

echo($item." item
");
echo($item1." item1
");
echo($item2." item2
");
echo($item3." item3
");
echo($item4." item4
");
echo($item5." item5
");
echo($item6." item6
");
echo($item7." item7
");
echo($item8." item8
");


echo("FF
");
*/
$maxo = max($item, $item1, $item2, $item3, $item4, $item5, $item6, $item7, $item8);
echo "Top Matches
";
echo "
";
echo "
";
//echo "MAXO:".$maxo."
";
if($item == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item
";
$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );

}

if($item1 == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item1
";
$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );
}

if($item2 == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item2
";
$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );

}

if($item3 == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item3
";

$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );
}

if($item4 == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item4
";

$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );
}

if($item5 == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item5
";
$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );

}

if($item6 == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item6
";

$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );

}

if($item7 == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item7
";

$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );
}

if($item8 == $maxo){//echo "MAXO item8
";

$banner = " ";
$banner.= "$banner.= "width=\"100\" height=\"100\" >";
$banner.="
";
echo( $banner );


}


}

?>

mySQL long query

Dont want to keep writing these mySQL Queries over and over so park here:

SELECT FLOOR(MAX('item')), FLOOR(MAX(item1)), FLOOR(MAX(item2)), FLOOR(MAX(item3)), FLOOR(MAX(item4)) ,FLOOR(MAX(item5)),FLOOR(MAX(item6)),FLOOR(MAX(item7)),FLOOR(MAX(item8)), FLOOR(MAX(item9)), FLOOR(MAX(item10)),FLOOR(MAX(item11)),FLOOR(MAX(item12)),FLOOR(MAX(item13)), FLOOR(MAX(item14)), FLOOR(MAX(item15)), FLOOR(MAX(item16)), FLOOR(MAX(item17)), FLOOR(MAX(item18)) ,FLOOR(MAX(item19)),FLOOR(MAX(item20)),FLOOR(MAX(item20)),FLOOR(MAX(item21)), FLOOR(MAX(item22)), FLOOR(MAX(item23)),FLOOR(MAX(item24)) FROM Vains_test1 WHERE mood = 'happy' AND gender = 'female' AND age = '16' AND country = 'Israel' AND weather = 'sunny' AND artEd = 'yes'




with an alias:
SELECT FLOOR(AVG('item')), FLOOR(AVG(item1)), FLOOR(AVG(item2)), FLOOR(AVG(item3)), FLOOR(AVG(item4)) ,FLOOR(AVG(item5)),FLOOR(AVG(item6)),FLOOR(AVG(item7)),FLOOR(AVG(item8)), FLOOR(AVG(item9)), FLOOR(AVG(item10)),FLOOR(AVG(item11)),FLOOR(AVG(item12)),FLOOR(AVG(item13)), FLOOR(AVG(item14)), FLOOR(AVG(item15)), FLOOR(AVG(item16)), FLOOR(AVG(item17)), FLOOR(AVG(item18)) ,FLOOR(AVG(item19)),FLOOR(AVG(item20)),FLOOR(AVG(item20)),FLOOR(AVG(item21)), FLOOR(AVG(item22)), FLOOR(AVG(item23)),FLOOR(AVG(item24))as r FROM Vains_test1 WHERE mood = 'happy' AND gender = 'female' ORDER BY r ASC


SELECT FLOOR(AVG('item')), FLOOR(AVG(item1)), FLOOR(AVG(item2)), FLOOR(AVG(item3)), FLOOR(AVG(item4)) ,FLOOR(AVG(item5)),FLOOR(AVG(item6)),FLOOR(AVG(item7)),FLOOR(AVG(item8)), FLOOR(AVG(item9)), FLOOR(AVG(item10)),FLOOR(AVG(item11)),FLOOR(AVG(item12)),FLOOR(AVG(item13)), FLOOR(AVG(item14)), FLOOR(AVG(item15)), FLOOR(AVG(item16)), FLOOR(AVG(item17)), FLOOR(AVG(item18)) ,FLOOR(AVG(item19)),FLOOR(AVG(item20)),FLOOR(AVG(item20)),FLOOR(AVG(item21)), FLOOR(AVG(item22)), FLOOR(AVG(item23)),FLOOR(AVG(item24)) FROM Vains_test1 WHERE mood = 'happy' AND gender = 'female' AND age = '16' AND country = 'Israel' AND weather = 'sunny'
AND artEd = 'yes'
VAINS Notes for Tuesday (so I dont lose)




If I may introduce myself, my name is Eleanor Dare, I am a final year Doctoral student in the department of Computing, Goldsmiths, doing a PhD in Arts and Computational Technology. My PhD interrogates the meaning of interactivity and new constructions of agency within Human-Computer Interactions.


My final practice is represented by South: A Psychometric Text Adventure, this is an artist’s book and a set of software programs. The South project re-conceptualises the artists’ book, fostering a creative sensitivity to the temporally and socially entangled agencies that are always at play, but often subsumed, in complex systems of human-computer communication. The project presents a multi-linear and relational form of intra-activity as an alternative to more linear forms of interaction. The formation of temporally specific, contextualised, relationships between readers and texts has been one of the central goals of my practice; as such a large amount of research has focused upon ideas relating to subjectivity and by extension to issues of epistemology and agency. As a result the South project is built around a series of software agents that perform analytical and interpretive tasks in order to support situated responses. These agents are framed as both structural tools and unorthodox protagonists within this work, supporting environmentally and sensorily situated programming that responds, for example, to both individual subjects and to wider elements, such as the height of the river Thames and CCTV images of London’s roads.
I bring this methodology to my collaboration with Lee on VAINS, the Visual Art Interrogation and Navigation System, which we began to work on a few months ago.

The software and structures we are developing represent a practice-based hypothesis that subjectively and environmentally situated intra-active software can enliven digital arts curation while significantly developing previous notions of ‘the interactive’. The software also presents the case for bespoke works while acknowledging and nurturing collective meanings and shared experiences. Such works challenge linear, humanist, conceptions of agency that might characterise the ‘bespoke’ as a solipsistic and individualist construction. To clear up my earlier reference to the intra-active, intra-activity posits a situated and dynamic form of inter (or intra) action that unfolds between or rather within the moment of connection between a range of actors, or agents, both human and non-human. This, I hope will become clearer as we present our work today.

Now I’d like to address these three main questions:
What are we trying to do?
Why are we doing it?
And so what?

There are also many important sub-questions that Lee and I are constantly asking ourselves, such as:


1) Does the VAINS environment and its navigation systems compete unhealthily with the content?
2) Is it a fake freedom - to offer a collaborative filter and new means of navigation?
3) What does a non-verbal interface offer that a verbal one doesn’t?
4) Does revealing the underlying computational structures of VAINS represent a significant and valid departure from orthodox online curation?
Before we can answer these questions or explore them more deeply I’ll outline some of the initial ideas for what the VAINS project signifies and how it will be realised.
My priority is to generate a complex and nuanced understanding of human-computer relationships, one that does not presuppose a discontinuity in the conceptual foundations of programming and computers from other cultural and philosophical artefacts. In this context computational constructions are framed within a historical continuum, in which both the subject and the subject’s generation of knowledge are linked to enlightenment and positivist philosophical positions, and therefore to wider cultural and historical movements. At the same time I have sought to confront or re-frame the separation between computers and humans, or indeed the ready made separations that we project between subjects and objects (including visitors and online galleries). An important aspect of my work has been to identify significant features of computational knowledge generation, while acknowledging that computers are not clearly separable from ourselves, but, like all human artefacts, are of us. This methodological position is supported by writers such as Donna Haraway (1991), Henri Bergson (1896, 1907), Rosi Braidotti (2006) Karen Barad (2007) and Lucy Suchman (1987, 2005, 2006). These writers shore up the proposition that human beings are entangled with their technologies and with complex, relational and temporally bound systems of agency.
In the hybrid zone between arts and computational technology there are meaningful differences between arts based and scientific research. Recognising and accommodating these differences, as well as the significant points of convergence is one of the central challenges for a research project such as VAINS. As Graeme Sullivan states (2005), there is a need for artist researchers to generate ‘different paradigms of theorizing’ (Sullivan, 2005: xix).

The writer Donna Haraway identifies the seemingly contradictory requirements of a so-called successor science, a science defined by Sandra Harding (1993) as a project that will address the systemic short comings identified in particular by feminist epistemologists and scientists, failings which Haraway defines as the ‘hierarchical positivist orderings of what can count as knowledge’. (Haraway, 1991: 188). Haraway frames this successor science as owning a ‘radical multiplicity of local knowledges’ (187). Such a multiplicity enables a new form of objectivity that can accommodate post-modern insights into knowledge production, particularly post-modernism’s emphasis upon power relations, and its attack upon the implicitly universalising, overarching and grand narratives of humanism.

A successor science proposes a new form of objectivity that Haraway describes as turning ‘out to be about particular and specific embodiment, and definitely not about the false vision promising transcendence of all limits and responsibility’ (190).
The building of multiple and multi-linear systems of individual and situated interactions within my own practice is corroborated in the idea of a successor science. The core insights of Donna Haraway (1991), Sandra Harding (1986; 1991), Lorrraine Code (1993, Lucy Suchman (1987; 2007) Karen Barad (2007) and Elizabeth Grosz (1994) are in many ways congruent with my own practical interest in creating transparent and openly partial structures. Donna Haraway writes:

The moral is simple: only partial perspective promises objective vision, this is an objective vision that invites rather than closes off, the problem of responsibility for the generativity of all visual practices (198)

Using visual practices as an example Haraway emphasises the corporeality of this sensory system, it is undeniably embodied and not as she puts it ‘a gaze from nowhere’ (188). Despite this, vision has been used within Western scientism to somehow signify a transcendental and neutral observer, it has been allowed in other words to ‘represent while escaping representation’ (188). But Haraway is keen to point out that her notion of embodiment and particularity also serves as a metaphor for non-human forms of vision, including vision in its varied technological forms:
I would like to suggest how our insisting metaphorically on the particularity and embodiment of all vision (though not necessarily organic embodiment and including technological mediation) are not giving in to the tempting myths of vision as a route to disembodiment and second-birthing, allows us to construct a usable, but not an innocent, doctrine of objectivity (189)

Within the VAINS software we are attempting to embed mechanisms for representing our own and our visitors’ partial perspectives. Locating oneself and the particularity of one’s own vision represents an ethics of knowledge production, but also a more complex bringing together of subjects and objects, which, may open up new possibilities for interactive processes within our work.

In this context an outline of the goals for this work could read as follows:


The VAINS site will respond to the expected changes in content consumption as part of the movement towards a more complex web 3.0 generation, offering a customizable and personalized art viewing experience.

VAINS aims in places to be a text free environment where visual experiences are interpreted through their contextual categorization and through the use of other sensual means, such as icons and sound. The VAINS environment will also deploy the embodied and situated nature of human users as core resources in its underlying computational structures.

The project is committed to a form of process orientation and an emphasis upon mind-body, and society-individual integration that is also supported by, for example, Csíkszentmihályi [Chick-sent-me-High] (1990, 1996), Pope (2005) and Maturana and Varela (1992). These authors propose epistemologies not of knowing an absolute world of facts, but rather an active process which itself creates the world of human experiences.
This may loosely answer the ‘what’ part of the first three questions I outlined earlier.

Why – has been partly indicated by my methodological commitment to exploring the meaning of interactivity, particularly in regard to the notion of participation and by Lee’s commitment to investigating the relevance of analogue curatorial practices to digital curation. The VAINS project aims to challenge the presumed neutrality and trans-historical nature of code, seeking instead to throw light on the co-constitution of humans and computers as well as the asymmetries present in their relationships and aesthetic strategies.


My research takes a critical approach to the linear characterisation of many ‘interactive’ systems or linear models of cause and effect, hence my interest in researching alternatives such as intra-active, multi-linear systems of meaning-making. Having stated that, however, our rationale in constructing the VAINS system has been based on identifying causal factors in the failings of previous sites and in predicting the value of creating alternative, intra-active and situated systems.

The current Computer Fine Arts Collection website looks like this:

Power Point SLIDE

Lee has identified the core assumptions and underpinnings of conventional art curation and asks how relevant those ethical tenants are to online dissemination. Certainly we can argue that the current form of many art sites is at odds with those tenants, without even needing to mention how dull such an ‘interface’ is.

In identifying the blankest possible means of curating digital art online we have also brainstormed alternatives, including forms of visceral navigation that may deploy

• Reaction times/Reflexive responses
Visual perception
Hand to eye co-ordination
Abjection/containment - which may also be characterised as abjection for provocation.
‘Affective’ feedback
and Superstition

Such forms of navigation and filtering are very much part of my interest in alternative computational epistemologies, these epistemologies challenge the propositional logic at the heart of what is called Good Old Fashioned Artificial Intelligence – a narrow conception of human intelligence that denies the body and certainly denies the political and cultural significance of its own logic. A prototype system I have developed collects reaction times and links them to user preferences so that it may make aesthetic or navigational predictions based on embodied reactions, such as the reflexes of visitors.

IMAGE [my reflexive software]

To answer the SO WHAT part of our questions:

As you will see, Lee and I are collecting a range of data that we hope will facilitate novel and significant new forms of art navigation, as well as deploying systems that are familiar from more commercial sites such as Amazon.com, this is done in the service of investigating the limits of what we may do as an alternative to a site such as the current Computer Fine Arts Collection. At the same time we are wary of uncritically adopting the rhetoric or ideology of user choice.


VAINS data gathering and analysis for interpretation and navigation.

We will gather an online test data-set in order to create a user-based collaborative filtering system, using the languages php and mysql.

Collaborative filtering may also be called Opinion mining, or sentiment analysis.
The algorithms work by searching a large group of users or items and finding a smaller list from it with tastes that match either users or art-works. We will establish multi-dimensional similarity metrics for VAINS visitors based on the data-set and probable interests of new visitors. These will be dynamic and offer a constantly evolving picture of the content and how users react to and engage with it.

Recommendation algorithms:

The algorithms we are constructing will find closest matches, for mood, weather, gender, age, location etc. They will find what the closest co-users in the system liked as well as negative correlations - such as what they might not like.


We could also think about using genetic algorithms - providing a good balance between determinism and a completely random system for suggesting an ideal path through the VAINS content...

2000 words

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

http://www.dareinteractive.com/VAINS/reflex_interface/index.html

/**
* Eleanor Dare
* Reflex based arts navigation 2010.
* Depending on the speed of user responses
* users are directed to the favourite sites of
* other users who have responded at similar speeds
*/

Prototype for VAINS

http://www.dareinteractive.com/VAINS/3dinterface/interface.html