Monday, January 31, 2011

Intellectual Property and Medical Diagnosis

Looking up articles about the history of intellectual property, mixed with the terrible cold I came down with this past week, got me thinking about how the internet can help the creation of ideas.  Many websites such as webmd offer free medical advice, but more often than not I feel that people (myself included) are reading too much into cold and flu symptoms.  People can put themselves into a panic over something that, if properly diagnosed, could be nothing more than a nasty case of the sniffles.  While the internet can be a great tool for looking up cold remedies, finding opinions on what kind of tea works best to soothe a sore throat, and other non-panic-inducing ideas, I feel it can also put ideas into people's minds that do more harm than good.

Sunday, January 30, 2011


Originally, I was going to work with language because I thought that the barrier that was/is set up between people who can't understand each other was a huge problem.  I think I might have found something that I am more passionate about means more.  It all revolves around "love".
What can change how someone perceives things. What can change how someone feels. What can change the world. LOVE. Love can do all of that. With love, I believe, we can do great things.
Think about those that aren't loved. People who have been stepped on, forgotten about, and hated. What do they know that others don't. What do those others know that the hated don't.
Now everyone has felt love and everyone has felt hate, but what can be found with this?
This of those in prisons. They need love. I think that is where my mission lies at the moment. Love to the unfortunate. What do they know and what can they teach me.
That is all for now

Friday, January 28, 2011


This issue raises a lot of important issues and becomes something that individuals are grappling with as I am posting this. Initially, this question makes me consider Steve Jobs- he is a believe that anything that goes up online should be within the public sphere. I think their are many issues with this ideology- due to personal security, labor associated with artistic works, etc.

The issue is that we have developed a culture that operates off of instant gratification- a culture that is conditioned to get it's entertainment for free. Individuals are constantly downloading music, textbooks, films-- when they could very well be bought. If we want to create boundaries and confirm that people's ideas do matter (or that they are of worth and can be legally protected) then I think the psychology of people need to change. In this regard, I think it is happening to some extent. Vinyl Culture is an example of this-- where people will go out and buy records, supporting their artists-- because it is refuting the downloaders and establishing a sense of materiality.

This question of Intellectual Property reminds me of the artist Jeff Koons. Kate Taylor of the NY Times writes, "Over his three-decade career that approach, while helping to make him famous, has also brought accusations of exploiting other people’s copyrighted images. He has been sued for copyright violation four times, losing three of the cases." Here is the whole article:

Jeff Koons, reminds us that issues with Intellectual Property are nothing new- nothing specific to digital culture- but rather that this issue has been embedded in art history for a long time. Duchamp is a main source of discussion with his piece entitled "Fountain". Duchamp changed the face of art- through incorporating a found object into the gallery space-- a urinal. Art becomes more than it's material or formal structure- Duchamp establishes that art can be conceptual, an idea. But, again-- the question of who owns that idea is something that I'd like to discuss further in class.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Just wanted to share....

An example of a fun/pretty derivative work! This was in a gelateria in Rome.

Are copyright laws good or bad?

On the one hand, I'd argue that they're least to some extent. Not everyone shares a respect for art, a desire to build something new from existing work. Some people just want to make a killing off bootleg DVDs.

But this is the 21st century, and copyright laws are dragging their feet. All around us, the world is buzzing with new and old technology--books, TV and movies, youtube videos, tweets and facebook posts, blogs, newscasts, old paintings, new paintings, fashion, graffiti, parodies, remixes of remixes--

It's a little overwhelming. It's also rich with untapped potential.

In our remix culture, new technologies create the potential for new artistic mediums. But as long as art is sold as commodity, copyright laws will play an essential role. So how can we find the balance between protecting an artist's work and locking it away?

P.S. I made a separate blog to document my ideas, because I'm thinking my final project will involve the progression of these thoughts, and it really helps me to see it all in one place...though maybe that's the organized writer in me, getting in the way. :) Obviously I'll make the same posts here, since the interplay between all our ideas is crucial to what we're working towards. I hope that's okay!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Media (Mediums): Media Practicum

Media research:
I'm trying to dig into the words media and medium, to root out their histories and some of the various meanings they've been meant to convey over the years. Where better to turn for the history of an English word than the trusty Oxford English Dictionary?

media 1 mi.dia. Pl. (in sense 1) mediæ mi.dii. [L., fem. of medius middle, used elliptically. ]

2. Biol. Short for L. tunica or membrana media. The middle tunic or membrane of an artery or vessel.
  • 1889 Leidy Anat. (ed. 2) 580 The media is composed of transverse muscle-fibres with some elastic fibres.

media2 mi/enticons/macr.gif.dia/enticons/breve.gif, sb. pl. [Pl. of medium sb.5, prob. after mass media. ] Newspapers, radio, television, etc., collectively, as vehicles of mass communication. Freq. attrib. or as adj.Also erron. as sing. in same sense.

mi/enticons/macr.gif.di/enticons/ipa313.gif/enticons/breve.gifm, sb. and a. Pl. media, -iums. [a. L. medium, neuter of medius middle, cogn. with mid a. ]

a. Any intervening substance through which a force acts on objects at a distance or through which impressions are conveyed to the senses: applied, e.g., to the air, the ether, or any substance considered with regard to its properties as a vehicle of light or sound. Often fig.

  • 1794 G. Adams Nat. & Exp. Philos; II. xv. 136 By a meant any pellucid or transparent body, which suffers light to pass through it.
  • 1875 Encycl. Brit. I. 100/1 The air around us forms the most important medium of sound to our organs of hearing.

b. The application of the word in sense 4 to the air, ether, etc. has given rise to the new sense: Pervading or enveloping substance; the substance or `element' in which an organism lives; hence fig. one's environment, conditions of life.

a. An intermediate agency, means, instrument or channel. Also, intermediation, instrumentality: in phrase

b. Spiritualism, etc. A person who is supposed to be the organ of communications from departed spirits. Hence also applied to a clairvoyant or a person under hypnotic control.

  • 1888 Bryce Amer. Commonw. III. 639 Attempts to pry by the help of `mediums' into the book of Fate.

a. nonce-use. A person of the middle class

  • 1837 T. Hook Jack Brag ii, The tip-toppers are livelier than the mediums.

What do you think of when you hear the word “Media”?
CNN, FOXNews, MSNBC, New York Times, Reuters, Associated Press, Clear Channel The Huffington Post, Al Jazeera etc...

Media is the plural of “Medium” – an intermediate, a go-between--
A medium is a person capable of communicating with another realm, with the dead, with ancestors, the spirit world, or the Gods-
A medium, a shaman, a seer, a witchdoctor, a wiseman – these people, in many different cultures were charged with healing, with communicating with deities and ancestors, rituals and rites, the obvious analogy for our own time and place might be the clergy, but I reject this, the outsized and disfigured face of modern religion bares little relation to this idea of shamanism; more a combination of communicator, intercessor, advisor, doctor, pharmacist, psychologist, caring for the mind as well as the body, the soul as well as the mind, mapping the spaces between and overlapping, the realities of this world and of others, actualities and eventualities--This is beginning to be digressive but the fact of that matter is, today's MEDIA is no replacement for the MEDIUMS (and their cultural ancestors) of years gone by.

So what can the OED teach us about the multiform media we are forced to deal with today?
Media (medium) is a scientific word, used to describe a substance through with force acts, and through which light and sound are conveyed. A medium is an intercessor, a go-between, a halfway of sorts; a medium is an organ of communication, within one other, with those things outside of what we can perceive.

Now the many media we experience seem to be digital bridges, intersections of our own experience and another's, and in many senses this is true –but more and more we are no longer connecting with the vision or idea or gesture or comments or creations of other individuals, but with material that has been engineered, committee-ed, designed, and approved to induce a specified reaction or manipulate an inherent human sentiment with a stipulated end (
the bottom line)—to induce a reaction: buy this thing, watch this thing, hear this thing, think this thought, think this thought, think this thought, think this thought, repetition is a key to their strategies, think this thought, buy this product, don’t question the authority of it, believe this, believe this, believe this, trust the rising Id-level intensity, let it blind you, forget what you know, now you know what we know to be true: consumption is the Real American Dream.

To realize fully what we are lead to believe is “media” in this country, we have
to step away from the word, and wrangle with the edifice
what is your reaction to these phrases? Repulsion? (me too) I think we need to take MEDIA as well as medium back from those who seek to turn these words against us.


we are playing telephone
with technology can you play
telephone without it?
Mr. Graham Bell doubts it

We had a plan: to take that childhood game called telephone--where one child begins by creating a phrase which is whispered from child to child around a circle until it gets back to the person who first uttered it and the phrase is uttered again, checked for validity with the person who initiated it, and normally quite different from the beginning words--and play that over a multi-media web, rather than whispering, to see how each technology shapes the idea over time.

One of us began by passing the initial few lines of this post to another in a note. The first person considered the pen the note was written with and the paper it was written on technology, though some might argue they are only the product of it. But this is where our project slowed. The recipient of the note wanted to mail the words to the next person. They never found the address and four days later decided simply to call instead. After that it took two more days for the final product of the project (the picture in the upper right-hand corner of this post) to be sent on.

Unlike on social media where comments on comments happen minutes after something is posted, we couldn't even pass an idea around our circle of three more than once in a week. One technology seemed so separate from the next. Even though we each posted on our facebooks and called our friends many times over the course of the week, this classroom assignment seemed distant from all that. Our phones at our hips and our profiles a few clicks away, we found it easy to have a conversation in the ways facebook and text-messaging set up for us, but failed to rise fully to the challenge of interacting all these different medias with an idea.

Since this is about communication, the last piece of our conversation couldn't help but focus on social media--using the placeholder images from facebook--the current pinnacle of media platforms by sheer traffic. They are symbols of generic-ness and anonymity as well as the fastest form of interaction technology has given us. They remind us of the compromise of personality for popularity, a small network of strongly connected friends for a large network of sparsely contacted acquaintances. New social media unifies all forms of human discourse, and fosters new and challenging forms of discussion, but might this cause our interpersonal dialogs to take on a homogenous form? When we tried to interact with each other, as well as various forms of technology in a dynamic way, the process seemed too slow and tedious.

The first step is admitting that we have a problem. While we might not be there yet, we have started to realize our potential failings in our increasingly technology-dependent world. We've failed to leverage the benefits of the diverse, multi-media tools at our fingertips, in doing so we came to terms with our over-use of single media communication. We check our Facebooks like Pavlov's dogs -- when a telephone ringtone is like the bell that they run to for nourishment. We feed ourselves with our Feeds.

Is a feed better than a conversation?
It is certainly faster.

How can we facilitate the use of multiple forms of technology to create an easily accessible, but diverse, mode of conversation? We need a platform that supports conversing almost as quickly as Facebook but challenges its posters to try new forms to communicate their ideas.
We aren't there yet.

The First Technology

So the question was, as best as I recall, how much technology do we use and/or think about in a day, an hour, or a minute. As my group partner and I sat down and began to meditate upon our assignment we were naturally, first, drawn to the key word of the sentence: Technology. I grabbed my notebook and my pen: there: a fresh new lined page with powder blue lines and page ends that somebody must have designed and decided. It is funny how some of us will look at this piece of paper, already printed on – already imprinted, and connect it to themes of blank slates and empty rooms, white pure and untouched. But that is for another post, another recording of thought.

We attempt to fit technology into the ‘three adjective game’ as if it is a freshman in their first discussion. We come up with phrases (because a single word is too constricting – the space between words is sometimes necessary (you may find things to seep between the white pixels into meaning) to incur compactness) such as “advanced system”, “advancing existing systems“, “expedites”, “efficiency”, “repeatable efficiency”, “repetitive efficiency?”, “accessibility”. They are all descriptive.

We seize upon “accessibility”; perhaps it is due to the mobile devices we have, always hovering around our persons. Is it, AT&T?, who has the slogan (or at least, advertising tag line) “every second counts”? We discussed the dimensions of “accessibility” and came up with Time. High speed internet is the standard speed at which we expect the cyber databases to spew out the answers to our queries. Whether something is “accessible” or not means, at least in this generation, the speed at which our thought, our will, can be translated into action. I want to know what the weather will be like today. Well, the accessibility of that information is significantly increased by my having an app like on my phone, on my bedside table. Technology is a tool which we expect will more speedily, and thus more directly, translate our directed consciousness into a physical actualization.

We also came up with the concept of “Space”. Mobile devices are made so as to retain optimum portability. Cellphones and music devices, ideally – at least according to myself – fit pockets, laptops fit backpacks. I want to know the temperature outside: technology presents a more immediate solution by offering the option to check my phone rather than to step outside. The space that a mobile device occupies is credit to its “accessibility”. It allows for a more direct realization of a thought.

We discoursed at length about the aspects of Space and Time in “accessibility” and then began to retrace our steps back to the original keyword: technology. We found the word “tool” at some point back along this path and latched onto it.

In order to dissect the purpose of a tool beyond its specific context let us invoke a rather rudimentary image. A stone used to crack open a nut, say a coconut. This is a tool. It is helping the crude image of a man to simply bash the sharp edge of the rock against the tough coconut shell. Why? It is because he desires the fruit of the coconut. The sharp rock, then, is the physical vessel he uses to translate his wish, his idea, into a reality. Fast forward many thousands of years into this instant where you may or may not be scrolling down with your cursor searching for the right bottom corner hand side of the page (or you may be tapping the down button on the keyboard) in order to continue your experience of reading. Is not the cursor ultimately following your mental decision?

It seems then that technology is a tool which, in turn, is a vessel for a conscious purpose. Well, the question was answered sufficiently for us then. How much do we think about technology? We cannot help but defy that question. We instead come to the conclusion that our minds, the receptacle for yet unmanifested ideas and intentions, must be the forefather and therefore the essence of technology itself. We hone and develop this tool for optimum speed, fill it with revised points of reference so that the information is ‘close at hand’. What, if not our very beings are the most capable of providing the most appropriate “accessibility” to any and all of our musings and meditations? We cannot discontinue ourselves from the progeny of our imaginations because our imaginings also must be a definition of ourselves. The first technology, is the skill of thinking. I hope you all have had a technological experience.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Structuring Individual Choices


College. An institution structuring our individual choices. Nature. The 'natural' way of doing things, ironically, things aren't organic, they're just 'in our nature.'

We transform the college system. Bifurcation theory at its best.

Above is the link to an excerpt from this book. It's a super easy read and quite humorous at times. Definitely recommended.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


What are we missing everyday? What are those things that fall between the tines that could be of use to us? I am in awe of what i don't know and i want to know what i already don't. Where can we even begin to find what's missing if we don't know what it is that we are looking for?
My search goes on with languages, trying to find what is missed in the translation, trying to find what is lost.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Idea for semester project

I've been working on an media performance piece dealing with issues of communication in the 21st century. I realized that this piece contains ideas that embody critical fork theory. As we develop an understanding of of this theory (through classroom/personal experiments)-- I wonder what how limited fork theory relates to systematic issues of experience. This issue arose today as I realized my performance piece incorporates many forms of experience- live sound as well as silence, video projection. But it is through these various forces of experience that the narrative of my piece begins to become inaccessible or rather complicated. This complication or inaccessibility parallels the definition of limited fork theory...

"that not only includes, but also appreciates: imagination,
the fruitfulness of dead ends, the possibilities of error,
the usefulness of failure, the beauty of the many configurations
of the box the limited fork comes out of and goes into, forking,
reconfiguring, shaping, foldimg, unfolding, and bifurcating all the way."

This is why I think this media performance might serve as a fruitful long term project within the context of this class. I hope to discuss or refine these thoughts soon.

The self-title album by Twine is a source of inspiration for thinking about this long term project and (i feel) is relevant to limited fork theory. Check it out:

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


We attempted an experiment to showcase the way systems can change one another. We left a voice mail message on google phone and the message was transcribed to email. The image showcases the translation. Through this translation the original message was altered. This was done in a group with Chanel, Sarah O. and Sarah C.


So Betsy and I begin, lacking iPhones and smartphones and really any effectively “cool” technology. Oddly enough we both have thick iPods, old ones, and dumbphones, with full keyboards and crummy cameras. Fortunately I’ve been keeping statistics on my music listening habits through a website called

Also rather fortunate, has a really cool "chart builder" for posting your most listened artist or tracks, so without further ado, Sam Henke's top ten most listened to artists of the last week:

Speech isn't just Words

This video is related to the concept (vis-a-vis our conversation now 7:42pm) that culture is not just understood through language, text, image-but smell, etc. David Byrne discusses the possibility of considering a culture through their food.

What Is?

We use language to create and describe the reality that we find ourselves in. How do we do this? How does language describe what we hear, see, smell, and feel? Language as a system of metaphors and signs. How do images become words and the other way around?

Distillation Needed?

When I think of the internet as a place where voices from all over can put themselves out there, I'm reminded of this poem:

Radio Thin Air
by Nick Flynn
Keep the radio on softly
so it sounds like two people in the next
room, maybe
your parents, speaking calmly about something
important--a lock
of cash, the broken
cellar pump. Marconi believed
we are wrapped in voices, that waves
never die, merely space themselves
farther & farther apart,
passing through the ether he imagined
floating the planets. But wander
into the kitchen & no one
will be there, the tiny red eye of the radio, songs
that crawl through walls,
voices pulled from air. Marconi
wanted to locate the last song
the band on the deck of the Titanic played,
what Jesus said
on the cross, he kept dialing
the frequency, staring across the Atlantic,
his ear to the water,
there, can you hear it?

But even though the Marconi in the poem believed all sound waves never die, he still searched specifically for the last song played on the Titanic and the voice of Jesus Christ. He felt compelled to distill the sounds "floating through the ether." How in the network of the internet do people go about distilling voices?
Sites like Wikipedia rely on their user base to keep the information in check, editing one another to stop misinformation from getting through, but I have yet to have a teacher since I began writing formal papers allow me to cite Wikipedia. Academia does not see the people who devote large chunks of their lives to editing the site as reliable. Still, I often begin on Wikipedia, using the sites sources as my sources to begin a paper, and I have been credited for having strong evidence to support my points on papers by teachers who won't credit the website that led me to those sources. How in a world where everyone can put their voice out into the ether with the click of a button does a voice become known as reliable? As the way we communicate changes so drastically, people must recognize that sources beyond those listed by academia as credible in the past are worthwhile in our present. But how can new voices work their way into the conversation?

Where does the time go?

The first thing that came to my mind when I started thinking about the internet is what a time-sucker it is. Sometimes when I want to finish homework or make some serious progress on a project, I have to turn my computer off just so I can concentrate. What is it that makes people feel the need to endlessly troll the internet for hours at a time? Are we searching for something in particular to fulfill us? Is there a limit to the random things we find entertaining? (I'm thinking the answer is no) There's one blog in particular I follow on tumblr called "The Daily What." (Here's the link! Check it out: Every day, some person (or group) searches the internet for.... anything. Everything. And they find some extremely odd and somehow interesting things. I found myself wondering what it would be like to have a job like that: just searching for things on the internet. It's like a scavenger hunt, but we don't know what we're looking for, or why.

Drivel into Civil

Ask anyone why he doesn't care much for Twitter and he'll claim that it's nothing but a bunch of bite-sized yippty-yap. I use Twitter because I can see its huge potential. On Twitter, I'm one with the masses where I can be just as important or at the same level to am A-list celebrity. A while back, I asked Demi Moore (@mrskutcher) a question and she responded.  Only on Twitter would this be possible, practical, and convenient compared to alternative methods of contacting her, like through e-mail, snail mail, or calling her phone.

Not only can I directly contact famous persons, but major companies as well.  Comcast has taken steps to improve its image where its customers congregate.  They created a Twitter account (@comcastcares), scoured for tweets with negative reviews or complaints about Comcast service, and responded with condolences or solutions.  The list of interesting ways to use Twitter goes on and on from playing games to avoiding speed traps.

Yet, what can be done about the undeniably large amount of babble that does exist on Twitter?  I stumbled upon "the longest poem in the world."  This site automatically matches tweets up so that it creates an extremely lengthy poem with a couplet rhyming scheme.  The outcome is something quite wonderful: seemingly insipid and pointless chatter is transformed into charming literary art.

Fork Theory and Publishing

As of right now, I am planning on thinking about the ways in which fork theory affects the publishing world. As someone who is interested in book publishing as a future career, I am extremely curious about how new media is affecting readers' experiences and the pros and cons of reading print vs. new media. I want to investigate the ways in which readers' experiences can be improved through the use of new media. I also question how the emergence of ebooks and other formats of publishing affect the experience of the author and the publishers as well. It seems to me that editing will remain important, yet with opportunities to use formats such as blogging as writing, will authors still wish to invest in an editor? These issues aren't only affecting book publishing, but other print formats as well, such as newspapers, magazines, etc. I'd also be interested in looking at the direction of those print formats and the ways which they are affected. Basically, I wish to focus my project on the consequences of the integration of the publishing industry with remix culture.

Is the issue really about free speech?

Our discussion on free speech especially with the Tuscan shooting is incredibly limited. I beg to differ here, but hear me out. Why are we talking about the rhetoric like it drove this man to shoot and kill, why are we pleading insanity for him based on political lines, and why has the media made this tragedy into the next hate fueled battle pinning the right and left?

Let us come to terms with the facts. Loughner is a terrorist. I said it, you read it right. He is a bloody terrorist with the cold and evil intention of causing bloodshed at a simple supermarket town meeting. If he were Muslim, the discussion would not be about the rhetoric and his fuel of hatred. It would be another media fiesta about the Muslim World which might include discussions on the Arab World or Afghanistan/Pakistan/India. Simply I see it like this: there shouldn't be a discussion about free speech circulating this man's motives, the discussion should be about the rise of violence and disunity due to politics. I enjoy bashing on Palin as much as the next, but "taking back America" shouldn't be taken literally and everyone including Loughner knew this.

This reminds me of the case of the man who walks into the school board meeting and aims to kill and/or harass the members for his financial decline. When the media got a hold of this, we were not discussing poverty and the effects of the economy on the middle to low class and their mental health, the airwaves instead were up in arms about gun control and the hero (security guard) who saved the day.

So, no I don't want to discuss free speech. I don't care about gun control. I want to get down to the facts, the nitty gritty intentions about those civilians behind the bullets and sometimes their delusional minds. I wonder if instead of raising our own battles in response to such actions, we need instead to unite and see the larger tragedy at hand, whether it is about a man like many others who is unable to support his family or about a crazed gunman instead of the supposed rhetoric around him.

Check these out: What is your take?

Some Thoughts (not entirely mine, product of a number of partnerships) on: A Collaborative Nature & Notions of Ownership

Even the environment of which we are part
is among our collaborators.

Even nature of which we are part
is among our collaborators.

So far, I've produced nothing in isolation. Not even a thought

when that thought has been about something, that subject (and all systems responsible for that subject existing so that it was available for me to think about it) collaborating in a thought system I call mine for the convenience, my mind an obvious host of the guest subject, but as a good host, I have certain obligations to my guest, among them, gratitude to the guest for bringing, for arriving as a subject for my thought system. I don't own the thought; it is not mine exclusively.

My relationship with information (and on some level, most things may be configured or expressed as information) is not owner of information. I assemble information, shuffle it, collect it temporarily, transform it as I am being transformed by it. It is through connecting and assembling information, through transformative processes that idea systems may be configured and understood as remixes. A more complex relationship with information configuration can lead to more complex policy regarding collaborators which include the environment, nature, (all of) space —none of which I own. And what many consider ownership is not permanent (ultimately, there's some form of ownership of chauvinistic illusion; a bit of palliative function since perhaps humans can't be cured of what may be configured as human nature systems); if anything, that ownership system is owned by time more so than anyone claiming ownership, though time is complex and not a single thing; as a system experiences co-ownership, or co-hosting of what it interacts with; belonging to time meaning having been hosted by a time system, having occurred. (Start Talking handbook from University of Alaska Anchorage)

But the idea system is talking to me in this moment that also becomes, as you experience this, a system talking to you.

You Don't Own Me comes to mind (interacts with/collaborates with a thought system in progress) as performed in The First Wives Club by Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn, and Diane Keaton; the you of the title and lyrics right now configured as idea itself, a migratory, a generic proxy for anything with which I collaborate, with which I interact without owning it; I like sharing the products I configure with contributors and collaborators who become collaborators by accepting an invitation to experience the poam (product of acts of making, acts that are systems of activity among collaborators), experience necessarily collaborative. (First Wives Club image from wikipedia):

Perhaps if I produced something while in complete isolation from any interaction or any other configuration of opportunity for influence, that something produced might be mine in a way that so far nothing else seems to be, my physiology itself proceeding as a collaboration of genetic contributions from two complex sources, two genetic systems. This is, however, a scenario I will not pursue, having no interest in establishing a pure ownership, a free and clear claim to being sole source of something. I mean, it is as if I stumbled upon a fork, as if, while falling, I reached out and was rescued by a tine that happened to be there, that was activated by my falling through it/as I fell through it —maybe.

It's all speculative. I find an absence of certainty refreshing, in many ways, for in that absence is something else, systems of transience, ebbing and flowing, waxing and waning, the exuberance of the hive, stunning, sometimes dizzying, sometimes subtle movement, so subtle that on some scales the movement bears well a label of motionless, but that range of movement suggest to me, that range collaborates with me into an idea that most things dance, somewhere in their atomic structure, most things dance —some of the dance hoped into fulfillment:

Monday, January 17, 2011

Decoding Dress Codes

Everyday we are faced with tons of advertisements through numerous streams of multimedia. I want to decode dress codes and what exactly are is presented on a socio-cultural aspect. As many people look at the way we interpret text, codes and signs. I want to look at why that outfit was chosen? Why is she/he wearing it? I hope to only use online resources that I frequent already such as fashion blogs, magazines and videos. These forms of expressing fashion is a new emergence that allows for people of all different backgrounds and socio-economic levels to participate.

What drives you to dress the way you do?

These two photos, I choose show two very different forms of dress. The first is an example of a man who doesn't have an interest in fashion. But why is he found on a popular fashion blog? The next is a personal sketch or characterization of a French fashion blogger. What made her choose the items she put in the sketch? For example, the bag in the photo is immediately recognizable for any fashion connoisseur and puts the artist on an entire different level of wealth and status. Does she embody the bag? Or does the bag add to her cultural identity?

Photo credit: 1.

The Beginning

So I've been sitting around contemplating which path to take in this class.  I think after some thought I've got it (at least for now). Here we go.
The States have it wrong. As a country we seem to believe that our excrement don't smell. Some sort of arrogance has filled this country and it is making me sick. Ignorance shouldn't be tolerated. What kind of image are we portraying to the world and where is this country going?
Now, I understand that there was a time when the US said that it would not deal with other countries and would just build itself up.  In my eyes, we have built ourselves up and have started interacting with other countries. What i do see happening is that we don't accept other countries as equals. It is a real shame that we have to hold our noses so high even though we are no better.
Here is my plan for this class. This ignorance must be stopped. Too much important information is falling between the tines of our forks. We need to catch more. Language is one of the important things that i see not making it on our forks. In the US we need to get people knowledgeable about the world. A way to do that is with language. If kids were all taught different languages while young, we could move forward in the eyes of the world. My goal is to work with a language. I will try to improve myself and then work to help others.

First Post!

I enjoy the irony of this picture because it represents how things have negative feedback loops in our society that keep catapulting our culture into danger. Where does it stop? We create our own limits by engaging in this vicious cycle. I hope to incorporate this ideology into a piece focused on the environment.

Qualifying Speech

The question proposed by Moss in DL1 about whether free speech should be limited in light of the events in Tucson has been on the lips of reporters and politicians across mainstream media, but as Richard Stengel, Time magazine's managing editor, put it in the most recent issue "that discussion has quickly fallen into predictable patterns: the left blaming the right for inflammatory rhetoric, the right blaming the left for unfairly singling it out" (Stengel). Even in a discussion about how divisive speech may in part have led to the violence of the Arizona shootings, politicians are dividing along party lines--demonizing the other side--creating an "us" and a "them." Each side has its own motivations for limiting the speech of the other, and if either managed to push their agenda forward I doubt it would be in the interest of all people. In October of 2010, John Stewart led the "Rally to Restore Sanity" where he called for simple changes to the media's rhetoric. Instead of totally demonizing the other side, Stewart suggested people try things like: "I disagree with you but I am pretty sure you're not Hitler" (Adams). Rather than searching for ways to limit free speech, we should look for ways to better speak to each other.

In a recent paper on the concept of good development, I wrote this:
//A development project in Cote d'Iviore, a country that has faced a rise in gender based violence in the aftermath of war, simply provided women in three different villages cameras and asked them to "make a record of their daily lives" (Jones) as a way to "give them time... to discuss what they would like to change" (Jones). Women in all three of the villages—who at the beginning of the project “feared they couldn’t do what they would be asked to do” (Jones)— stood up in front of their villages, displayed their photos, and spoke for change (Jones). In one village—upon seeing a photo of a battered woman’s leg— the old chief called for violence of any kind to stop (Jones). In the second village, a woman who had been badly beaten by her husband showed her photos to the village and that night, “for the very first time, he gave her money to buy food for the children” (Jones). In the third village, where six different languages were spoken, the men were not so receptive—yelling over the women—but the women still spoke. Men, under the lens of a camera, learned to see themselves and to see their wives. Women holding a camera found their voices. While this approach might not work in the United States where photographs are often retouched and used to sell rather than to communicate, in Côte d'Ivoire a camera bridged some of the distance between men and women. Simply speaking in public “left the women exuberant” (Jones).// (Stokes)
We must pioneer ways for people to communicate and thus remind ourselves of our similarities rather than our differences: not to reduce speech, but to create more productive dialogue. By seeing each other as people instead of competition, by defining ourselves through similarities rather than differences, we can better our and one another's lives. I hope to use this class to produce space online that allows for this kind of productive interaction: a space where "people are reminded of their collective humanity and responsibility to that humanity" (Stokes).

Works Cited

Adams, Richard, and David Batty. "Jon Stewart Rally- As It Happened." The Guardian. 30 Oct. 2010. Web. 17 Jan. 2011

Jones, Ann. War Is Not Over When It's Over: Women Speak out from the Ruins of War. New York: Metropolitan, 2010. Print. 15-55.

Stengel, Richard. "After Tuscon." Time [New York]. 16 Jan 2011. 2. Print.

Stokes, Jessica S. "Good Development: Perception and Practice." International Grassroots Development. University of Michigan, 2012.

First Post

I plan to create a video projection poster. It will be a 3x5 ft poster. I walk through Nickels Arcade almost daily. I always enjoy the walk and I always enjoy looking around at the facades that are thrown up to the ceiling. I also always, almost always, think different thoughts every time I walk through the arcade. My poster will reflect this. I will film the walk through Nickel's Arcade at, what I feel are, different moments during time or experience. When I have a sufficient number, I am thinking around ten to thirteen reels of the walk, I will place all of the short clips stacked on each other. So the image should be something like ten fruit by the foots set flat on a white surface with the edge of each touching the one above and the one below. Or another image that should be helpful is the one of the time stamp where you can adjust the separate bands to the current date. There will be bottom and top white margins - like where the space for the headers and footers go on a word document. (It is important to note that each clip will not be playing at identical speeds)

Onto these clips I will graft a poem written while reflecting on that particular film and the feelings emanating from and around me at the time of filming. Words will be emphasized and lighted, slowed down and toned in concord with the content of the poem.

In such a manner I hope to demonstrate the interactivity of the literature with time and space. (With space set as, more or less, a constant). My finished product should present the reader with the urge to linger in front of the poster trying to read all of the various texts that, according to each film, move slowly or quickly, sporadically or smoothly. Since these clips will be on a loop, some poems will present themselves more often than others thus reflecting the influence of redundancy and repetition on the ever moving and ever changing poster.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

First Post - Rap News

Hey fellow Remixers,
Here is an interesting youtube video that has some remixed elements. I'm considering using some of the ideas presented in my blog/project/website. Let me know what you think of it!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Some Limited Fork History that is also Some current Limited Fork Theory

to a place where our ideas (already forked) converge, mingle, diverge, etc. (politely); that is: they interact in any way possible for them to interact (polite forms of the ways possible, please) while configuring and reconfiguring tines of a Limited Fork system

You'll be exposed to much of the history of Limited Fork Theory in Design Lab 1, but not all of it, in part because Limited Fork Theory deals with partialities of partialities, an inevitable handicap for an approach to making understandings and to applying understandings that relies on a flawed tool, whose flaws include being the only tool available within what would be a closed fork system if the fork did not have gaps between the tines it must have as a forking or bifurcating system. (image of tree of chaos and bifurcation theory by System.dat-User.dat at flickr, bifurcating lung system from zhezhang/project)

I also do not yet (and do not to ever) know the entirety of the history of Limited Fork Theory. I can share with you a moment in which I both became one of the tines, and became aware of he presence of a limited fork (something already in place, joined in progress) —please note that in my sharing a moment from a prior event system, a part of the past (that which adheres on some scale to any part of a tine forking up the past to reconstruct it for you here and now); a part of the past becomes (is forked into) part of the moment occurring, the moment occurring seamlessly that we fork into parts: minutes, years, etc. (incredible flexibility when you think about it).

The sharing of a moment in October 2004 when I became aware of a system of thinking and making already in progress via the video poam (product of act[s] of making made that weekend, on Saturday night after coming home from a movie at the Quality 16 Cinema on Jackson Road in Ann Arbor, the video poam shared with my classes and colleagues on the last Monday in October, transforming everything in the configuration of everything the fork provided/provides:

THE 1st LIMITED FORK THEORY VIDEO POAM (from forkergirl) from October 2004:
The Song of Iota

The Song of Iota contains the Saturday night system of understanding that arrived at that moment of awareness in the Quality 16 Cinema on Jackson Road (see map below); I opened iMovie for the first time when I got home and with that application made the Song of Iota.

View Larger Map

In 2005, I made DOD: the death of depth (you'll notice that the video starts with the death of death —oops! such configuration of intention is a possible outcome of interaction), a video book about the birth of Limited Fork Poetics, an ancestor system of Limited Fork Theory: