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.
The direction for this installation has gotten me thinking about what it is I want to showcase in this work. Originally the idea I wanted to tangle with, was the notion that technology goes back and forth in iteration, in design, in trends and in functionality. I like the idea that the departure point for this last project was “futures”, and my immediate response was to showcase something that’s framed in the past. I think this is the basis of the work I want to display.
As non-human object, the technological devices we carry everyday constantly run at a pace determined by us. That, meaning they’re only function is determined by our use of them. Autonomy within them are seemingly not far away with the small increments being added to smartphones, however we can still choose most of their function. The thing that is seemingly out of our control though now is the way they’re manufactured to be replaced by the next evolution of the same thing. This leads most to expect another criticism of Apple, however I want to go perhaps a little more broad with examples like the Record – MixTape – CD – MP3 evolution. Or the Film – VHS – DVD – Streaming trajectory of technology that include perhaps require a whole new hardware component to access content. Without discouraging the thought of this, nowadays this seems to have come t a relatively smaller halt, but the upgrades coming WITHIN the device, as a software update.
Consumers now are faced with a device that is in perfectly fine working order, in that it turns on, runs and connects them to content at a leisure. However to gain more or perhaps the most recent available services, the individual must update the device. NOTE: I’m going to be using the smart phone/tablet for this example as it is the most relatable for me. Once the software is updated, the phone has basically been given a no returns sentence. The update is designed to target newer app downloads, but also “laggs” the phone, decreases its swift functionality and tells the story of the device ultimately needing an upgrade.
Something this week that I want to explore is perhaps the trail effect or reckless understanding we have of this. Using the devices from my past, as a reminder of how much this trend of keeping updated and connected, leads to a media archeology of functioning devices that are tossed aside. Perhaps we wish we could stick to the one mobile phone or the one DVD player, but industry doesn’t allow us to. There’s possibility for batteries in devices to last 3 weeks, however corporate bosses don’t allow this to happen. Is there humanity to these devices that ultimately leads to its era ending?
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.
ONE side: dead tech, accumulation of broken things rewired with neon glow
OTHER side: working, automated technology that is upgraded all the time
- think apple ads – one computer or screen playing AD on a loop
Perhaps something feedback suggested this week was that it was very hoarder like. The idea that everything was in a space that resembled a desk or office work space of someone frantically trying to build the next big invention. With this in mind, some of my tutors suggested messing it up, however when blocking more intimately, I found myself “tidying up” the space again. Here’s where my thinking and blocking has led me to…
- Trying to compete
- empathetic towards upgrading so fast
I’m going to try to encapsulate this for my next showcase using the building blocks i’ve already created.
Some questions for discussion and indeed reflection:
How does it make you feel? How do you feel about particular aspects of the work? What do you like/dislike? It makes me feel like I want to keep a conversation about all the old technology I used to collect. Ask others to start talking and observe where the conversation leads. Not necessarily ask them to showcase it or give me the devices physically, but I want this work to spark a conversation by the audience either to myself or each other and start reminiscing about devices they used to have. How can I ignite that with a space in the gallery. My trial this week is going to be with LED and NEON lights inside dead technology.
What is working? I think I touched on this towards the end of getting everything out on the table. People started to wander off into their own stories about what some of the devices I had on show. Perhaps what was working was the idea that the location of the
What possible paths could it develop along? The path I want it to navigate is the focus on how much value we place on these devices, and how it varies from person to person. Perhaps looking at how quickly we are to dispose of things, and being able to look at other peoples collections brings back memories. I really want to capture the idea that something isn’t functional anymore but can create a sense of joy when seeing it in a “life-like” state. This is where the neon/LED lights will come in handy, although the things they’ll be wired into are completely dead, they create the illusion of being “alive” with vibrant colours.
The Swaying light above will serve as a constant reminder of the constant switching between new working devices and the trends that bring back old technology.
This is something I want to play with.
“FUTURES” – symbolic representation with a swaying light, bringing a physicality to technological resurgence. Then it fading away as quickly as it came. VICE-VERSA to new technology and how quickly it is replaced or upgraded. i.e. Apple iPhones.
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.
MEDA302 (MEDIA ARTS PROJECT) is a capstone subject for the Media Arts study stream and one the central focus’ is the transition between university studies and the world of professional practice.
PROFESSIONAL PROFILE LINK: