I want to write this down
That above is literally a quote from myself. The point of writing “this” down is so that I’m actually writing. It’s not for anything or anyone, it’s for myself.
What a chapter to finish. Moving away from home at 18 never did I think I’d be sitting in a free roadside (brand new leather might I add) couch in a house decorated by me (including StarWars every second wall hanging). When you’re accepted into university you kinda assume you do it so that you can get yourself together, I’m here to say it’s not together at the end, but that’s half the adventure. Think of it as a duck swimming in water, everything looks smooth sailing. Your marks flow, your network grows, but for this to happen your feet need to work the whole time paddling really fast under the water.
I build drones in my bedroom, I fly them and I want to change the world using them. I’m a design thinker and believe you can only really know your practise by doing it literally right in front of you. This all sounds fantastic and you’re probably thinking, that is all well and good now that I’ve taken the risk and it paid off, but I want to advocate its possible.
I’m a small country town kid. I had no idea what it was I was going to do after school, but knew two things. Firstly, that I wanted to help people. I didn’t think doctor, because I wasn’t good at biology, chemistry, advanced maths in the HSC. However, helping people whether it made life easier, safer and generally happier. Secondly, that a fortune teller once told my mother that I would help people, take that as you will (believer or not). That was my only criteria to move to university. So I sat the HSC with no real nerves because I had so many people say it’s not the be all end all, and I believed it. Strangely enough, as my peers freaked out and told me completely different answers to my own in most of the exams I sat, I was okay throughout. I didn’t assume anything, I didn’t expect anything.
To keep context, I passed my HSC at around a credit equivalent average but thought I wanted to be involved in filmmaking, the arts, theatre, photography…storytelling. I wanted to tell my story. What a blessed period of time we live in that we can access devices that capture moments that tell our story. I was accepted into university off an audition process for a performance degree. This was wonderful. I was physically and emotionally pushed in classes and unlocked a confidence I wouldn’t have known without it. When asked why I left, I simply detail that what I tried, and am doing now, I love more. I still go and watch my close friends shows in Sydney and have a close connection to theatre.
What a change. I want to blog about the specifics of what it is I’ve done with drones, but this is sparked by a major decision I’ve made. Throughout my 3 years in Communications and Media Studies at UOW, I’ve finished. Done. Now on the hunt for what it is I get to give back to the world. It comes back to the point about helping people. I want to help people with technology and honour a value of hard work. I am hands on and I want to build things over and over until it’s right. Anyone can do this. Look up what it is that grabs the attention, and understand it. Watch hours of tutorials on YouTube, again and again. Even if you don’t have the financial means to purchase the product, watch unboxings, read reviews, look up the instruction manuals online and read it. This is exactly what I did before I built my drone. I knew the thing inside and out before I even thought about purchasing the parts to build it. When I finally got in touch with the people that I needed to about funding, I was ready for any of their questions. Done to the last colour combination of propellor. My “thing” just happened to be drones. But it could be anything.
I haven’t covered a lot of what I was going to reading back over this, but perhaps it’ll give me something to do while I’ve managed to gain crutches. I want to open up a space for those to gain an insight into a university life, opportunity, hardship and triumph. To take a look into my mind while also getting it in writing. It is therapeutic for such an over-active mind like mine.
“Software < Hardware”, Installation, 2017
A work that explores the nature of technology and perhaps reverses the idea that we are a disposable culture when it comes to the devices we interact with everyday. The work incorporates technology that was overtaken by another technology that physically made it dead. Scattered around are Walkmans that were made redundant by MP3 download,, TVs that were left when digital antennas meant the analogue channels were cut off, and iPhones that with regular iOS enhancements that meant working devices were become slow and inconsistent. So is what’s killing technology and any future development the software element? Forcing the consumer e to purchase a new one and discard the original. Would you part with your phone if it would still work in 10 years time?This is something that I feel if some people didn’t HAVE to change, they wouldn’t. So I believe this works on a digital level. The digital software is perhaps what’s halting a lot of technology. So I looked into a technology that uses an abundance of software to perform the newest forms of technology and I stumbled into 3D printing.
3D Printing utilises millions of lines of code that are then programmed into a piece of hardware that releases a physical form. So my question is, as a technology that uses so much software to operate, can it survive? or will it be the destruction of so many other things we’ve had to now rely on photos or memories to enjoy?
Sam Noakes 4759485
2x Kumi projectors: each playing a set of code on loop. The projection onto the 3D printed artefact is a code from one of the components that is then sent to a printer to be turned into the physical. The second projection then comes through from behind onto a tv with a iPhone glued to the screen. The projection is an apple update that was the last update I downloaded onto it that eventually caused it to run slowly and eventually not turn on. This was the last apple update i performed before switching to android.
The tv at the back right + strobe: strobe sits in the bottom right corner to showcase static unresponsiveness. That was the last TV I had that was affected by the switch to digital TV channels and could no longer run off the analogue channel providers. This was made unusable through digital upgrades.
Miscellaneous Tech: scattered at the back…ownership of each of the items have been replaced by another due to software or digital upgrades.
So a development in idea process. Instead of a mannequin-like set up that is showcasing technology dying into itself, I’m focusing on a particular technology that is new, but will end up dead. 3D Printing.
Everyone says how this is the next big thing, but track record of emerging technology suggests otherwise. I want to showcase this physically. Take out the mannequin hand that is looking for the next technology to sabotage, and use my 3D printed prosthesis. Then with the kumi, project onto the hand the STL code from the file I got it with. Essentially, the 3D printed hand is a piece of code taken a physical form. This will act as a catalyst for the humanisation of a device.
The dead technology will still sit behind it, however the idea is that the 3D printing phenomena is the “killer” in the momentum of futures. The STL code will loop over a period of time to show all components that go into the piece. The question I want to address is how can we stop this trend? Is a trend of the new futures going to be how quickly we can move onto the next emerging technology?
Iteration and installation will happen next week, this week I just sat within the space and literally looked at the devices. Questioned the motifs behind what it really is I want to understand and was really effective. I want to mind map this all out and basically just throw it up. The aesthetic nature comes last now.
FEFO as it’s commonly known.
Simple fact. It didn’t work. It didn’t showcase what I needed it to. It didn’t convey a sense of nostalgia. It didn’t ask questions of why we are attached to technology. It simply just didn’t resonate with people and again gave off the impression of a workshop/hoarding set up that was filled with Xmas lights and cheaply assembled LED lights.
Thats okay. I’ve got a backup idea to try. Same direction of how we dispose of the technology quickly, this time instead of asking what it is that makes us attached to things, this time i’m asking the question is it the technology within thats making these devices disposable. Is it the embedded marketing within websites and product launches that actually makes us subconsciously upgrade and dispose. Is the idea of AI not a being that can think walk and talk, but switch and make us switch devices at will.
I want to tangle with the idea of automation. Not in that we switch something on and leave it to wander for itself, but within the idea of automatic response. Automatic trajectory of devices, that things are built to break quickly and we just abide this because these machines tell us to.
Stay tuned. Broken tech still stays. LEDs go.
Could a current technology showcase a dead technology? Can we give the illusion or magic feeling combined with a dead technology and lights that presents it as alive.
What is about the revisiting of old technologies? Is it that its:
- nostalgia ? Simple human reflection?
- Is it trends? Will the idea of grasping onto old materials come and go?
- Human development/ progression/dependance on devices
- Reverse magical? What is that feeling we have when we see something from our childhood in fully functioning condition. Is this the same feeling as when we see magic performed live? I want to investigate this feeling of connection and disbelief that something “works”.
- in order to think about the “future” and more specifically technological determinism, do we have to understand and credit the past ideologies of progression.
- We have to acknowledge human interaction and relationships with devices to create helpful trajectories in the future.
- How do I create a setting with dead technology?
Human – technological being – always been apart of evolution
These are some more points of return that look at the way we have used certain technologies or aesthetics once before and are revisiting them more and more. I think for the week returning to class, I’d love to gather all the devices currently in my possession and assemble them around a space. I’ve also got some of the neon wiring that i was to ultimately weave in and around the devices, so that they give the illusion that they’re full of life. Using perhaps a new technology in LED lights and wires, into the old technology giving them a resurgence.
- utopian – when we think back to that era, we had no worries/ no responsibility / fantasy
- synth music
A REMIXERS MANIFESTO: RIP
Some of these examples I want to reflect on within the technological sense of futures. It works nicely with this idea of a loop of attention to certain devices from the past influencing the work of the future. This foregrounds that some of the research we see in trying to create a brand new product or the next gadget or device to change our lives, really needs to take notes from the past, and the human relationship with the particular job its going to create, help or save.
This idea links very closely with some further readings i’ve looked in theoretically, but when comparing all things media, music, art, movies and of course technology.
Introducing theory, practise, research, art, media and technology into one collective group I believe allows us to draw connections and trajectories between works of art, innovation modules and indeed continue an obligation to broaden the limits for the future.
Firstly, I participated in an activity to draw an draw out or map our thoughts within a Venn Diagram. We split the categories three ways: Research, Craft and Art. With these the base headings, we wanted to discuss how some technologies and works we’ve created in the past fit into some, one or all of these.
The three categories were filled with words or thought stimulators we could come up with. We ultimately decided that if dwelled on for long enough, each of the examples provided could actaully weave their way into all the categories. Which meant we had to be really specific with out choice of examples. For instance, if we say “technology” as a whole, it can definitely be talked about in a Research, Craft and Art bias but when naming a specific technology like VR/AR or 3D Printing, we then have to think about its position in these categories relevant to the time period.
This then lead into a mode of generalised thinking;
Research – Documentation, theory, PAST TENSE, things shaping ideas that have already happened and are revisted for further understanding
Craft – Practical, Skill based, materialistic, for me the act of “doing” could even be placed here. For example, the act of deciding to create or develop, that intrinsic thought applied to turning ideas into a reality.
Art – “the Grey area”, possible outcomes, aesthetic?, subjective, passion
For my own benefit and area of practise, I decided to take the controversial topic of Drone technology and try and outline their significance in each of these categories with an example of the above. I love the conversation this kind of thinking evokes, and how innovation can be seen as an artwork, or someones craft can pave the way for further research. This has happened with me. A lot of my projects have stimulated my own research into drone application for jobs to help people or solve outdated problems. Though indefinite, my research isn’t exactly “aesthetic” or probably wouldn’t be considered by most as an Art piece, doesn’t mean it couldn’t be. A device that provokes discussion for me means that it has potential. When the technology becomes a realistic everyday norm that’s when it gets succeeded.
Examples I want to share and build on the idea of specific pieces of work from drone technology, rather than the broad field they offer.
Next week, I’m excited to dive into the “futures” topic, and further develop this idea of connected links between craft and theory, and how some of the practises I’m involved with had elements of Research, Craft and Art mixed to create a prototyping idea through media art and communications applied to a new area of study in engineering.