Category: Key People

Norbert Wiener

Norbert Wiener (November 26, 1894 – March 18, 1964) was an American mathematician and philosopher. Wiener is considered the originator of cybernetics. Wiener wrote many books and articles. His book called “Cybernetics: Or Control and Communication in the Animal and the Machine” is the first public usage of the term “cybernetics” to refer to self-regulating mechanisms.

Why Media Archeology matters?

“Things matter in terms of their politics and how they participate in the construction of our world.” (Parrika, Jussi. What is Media Archeology. Polity Press, 2012.)

Media devices are a proof of the concept of a discrete spatiotemporal dimension which has shaken the claim that man cannot be in two different places at the same time. Holding discreet interaction levels independent from the conventional notion of time-space and carrying hybridity unlike any other place before; the complexity of euclidian space was presented to the perception of ordinary people by the mediation of electrically charged devices. These devices are the invention of the people interested in the field of physics or electronics. Edison’s experiments in recording audio (tinfoil phonograph) and visual data (kinescope) from the early 20th century might be shown as an example and the milestone although the experiments of creating visuals with music or experiments on moving image much more earlier. Presented to the market in ways that transcended the direct intention of their inventors, these devices captured a key human phenomena: need to satisfy the desire of “the other”s world/story/reality. Media archaeology excavates the media right from its materiality with the question of “what is used and what is at hand”. (Parrika, 2012) This new dimension conveys the hybridity of many realms, being a combination of organic and synthetic materials, it embraces scientific and artistic fields together too. Such that digital space is not only scientifically defined. Like all other spheres; it is also a result of practices and interaction. While chemistry presents synthetic materials, engineering provides practical solution to scientific problems by new transmission protocols. While engineers have been working on different transmission models since the twentieth century, not surprisingly, with a parallel line, in the art scene, there has been a questioning of the traditional forms. In terms of interaction, placement of art, and artists and audience boundaries. It may not be wrong to claim that the early roots of bidirectional artistic interaction in the contemporary world by the means of participation can be found in Brecht theatre. Artists as precursors of the upcoming imagery of the connected world, stressing creativity and freedom as fundamental values, have acted in a marginal way to shake the strict forms. While Beuys was seeking a mean a new society in which “every man is an artist”, Hugo Ball read out the dada manifesto on the stage, to declare the will for a new society and 2 a new art. Influenced art fields from dance to music, it was about the limitless potential. This can be considered as revealing its limitless potential going beyond the defined bodies. At the time Merce Cunningham (1964) as a choreographer believed in the limitless possibility for body movement, and John Cage (1960) for music. The essence of the tendency were the same across many. In 1959, when George Maciounus as one the pioneers of the Fluxus presented the motto art by anyway, anyhow, anyone, fluxus artists, poets, and musicians likewise challenged viewers by presenting the most mundane events brushing teeth, making a salad, and exiting the theater as forms of art. With a well-known example of “Cut Piece”, (1965) Yoko Ono invited the audience to cut a pice of her clothes to encourage them to participate. Later, in the same movement Fluxus, by emphasising impact of computer and internet technologies Nam June Paik introduced the term that will later be the name of the exhibition “Electronic super highway”(1995). With the help of mediation devices, performance, interaction and participation have gone beyond previous experienced limits regarding time and space. As a results, new interactivity set its rules as bidirectional interaction, eliminating the problem of distance in convenient (coded) space, which is electronically and digitally engaged. Within the digital realm new art forms were introduced. Scholars like Roy Ascott, pioneer of telematic art also made the clear connection between the pre and post digital art when claimed that “The merging of cybernetics and art must be understood in the context of ongoing aesthetic experiments with duration, movement, and process, although the roots of this tendency go back further” (Telematic Embrace, 2003) Afterwards, he continued exemplifying historical and conceptual connections with French impressionist tendency of exploration of durational and spatial limits. He added some credible artists from early twenty century who experimented with putting the visual form into actual motion, such as Marcel Duchamp’s Bicycle Wheel (1913) and Precision Optics (1920), Naum Gabo’s Kinetic Construction (1920), and László Moholy-Nagy’s Light-Space Modulator (1923–30). Telematic art example is not totally independent from the Raoul Hausmann’s poster or 3d printed objects, considering the changing understanding by the minimalism of the sculpture from static to temporal and mundane (Rosalind Krauss) When the art object leaves the function of the mere art object and takes place in the ordinary objects, the audience were lead to go beyond the distinctive aura of the art 3 platforms and lead to now and here. According to Hal Foster, Minimalism brings place into a layered situation by the changeability of perception. For him, art is a loop of future’s hunch and reconstructed past. Perhaps, Aleksander Rodçenko’s (1921) divided panels of painting is a similar example of the first multi-channel video art, using several monitors or screens, Wipe Cycle by Ira Schneider and Frank Gillette is. However, devices are not only capable of producing cultural artefacts, they are also capable of recording cultural actions. What is more interesting with the media devices is not their capacity for performance, interaction and participation by people faculty but their capacity to perform the algorithmic applications, their immense ability to store, calculate and interpret the data in different ways. By this features of devices, a performance that is about being present, not like in the way of repeated act in the theatre, lost its pure temporality. The archival function of the media has drastically changed the way of writing history by changing the way of keeping the records. By Ernst Wolfgang’s words who deals with material ontologies of the media and their potential impacts, including how these new materials change the storage of the data, dissemination of knowledge and processing of interaction “the old opponents past and present archive and immediate event become submerged in time shifting, which is the temporal essence of electronic digital operations.” (Ernst, pg 99) Today, with our perception and extended memory, a phone in the middle of the room can be seen relational with the Richard Serra’s sculpture called House of Cards (1969). In a way, claiming that changing archiving techniques means changing memory, freeing the knowledge from the symbolic by audiovisual representation, is proof of going beyond the limited interaction by means of audience, participation and accessibility. At this point, video comes to the front by including the motion and sonic transference from moment to another moment. Video is able to “replicate human thinking in its manner of operation” in Ina Bloom’s words (in her review of Radical Software that was published between 1970 and 1974. )In her emphasis, “One conclusion that may be drawn from the pages of Radical Software is that video challenges not just the standard conception of (representational) images, but, even more pertinently, the representation of the social that informs standard sociology from Durkheim to Bourdieu. The notion of the social link often hinges on the related notion of social or collective memory – usually defined in terms of the very stability of institutions, customs, languages and 4 behavioural patterns that are observed as if from the outside. In contrast, video – a force that, like human memory, records or preserves the past only through a constantly differing “signaletic” present.” Again in another scholar’s words, Andreas Treske, video, especially combining with the network system, frees narration from monopoly. It challenges the strategies, institutions and legislations with its high potential on collective memory. According to Treske, media technologies require us to navigate through the world of meaning into images make our memories. these timeless and time thickened images change the atmosphere, take us to the ground zero feeling. “We are immersing in the video atmospheres,” says Treske. Video as a form of realness gives us a new space under the new light in time. Inevitably video become atmospheric. A collectively produced sphere consist of many shares that mirrors the subjectivity of the user and determines the user’s interaction with society. Video spreads meaningful acts around the network inhabited spaces and environments. Today, Virtual reality combines the ideas of tangible corporeality and intangible representation. By synthetic reality, the intangible representation also becomes kind of sensible. Considering the upcoming technologies about the video (such as VR, 360 degree, tangible media) are exceedingly stimulating as well as extremely fast, updating the existing archives and adding them creative narrations with the new technologies might be worthwhile. Not to loose historical and conceptual connections and caring the authorial view in those narratives is also crucial as much as their novelty.

History of Automations

“A study of the history of automata clearly revelas that several of the basic inventions produced for these attempts to imitate life by mechanical means led to significant developments culminating in modern automation and cybernetics.” (Bedini 1964:41) Automaton is a self moving machine simulates the actions of a living being.

“I suppose the body to be just a statue or a machine made of earth… We see clocks, artificial fountains, mills, and other similar machines which, even though they are only made by men, have the power to move of their own accord in various ways.” (Descartes (1662) 1998:99)

  • Da Vinci’s Knight
  • The Draughtsman
  • The Musician
  • The Flute Player
  • The Digesting Duck (Jacques de Vaucanson, 1738)

The food is digested as in real animals…; the matter digested in the stomach is led off by pipes to the anus, where there is a sphincter allowing it to pass out. The inventor does not set this up as a perfect digestive system capable of manufacturing blood…to support the animal…(but) only to imitate the mechanics of the digestive process in three things, firstly, the swallowing of the food, secondly the maceration, cooking or dissolving of it, and thirdly the action causing it to leave the body in a markedly changed form. (Diderot, cited in Chapuis and Droz 1958:241)

  • The Silver Swan

  • The Mechanical Monk

  • The Turk
  • Hellbrunn mechanical theatre (1750)

Nam June Paik (1932–2006)

Our life is half natural and half technological. Half-and-half is good. You cannot deny that high-tech is progress. We need it for jobs. Yet if you make only high-tech, you make war. So we must have a strong human element to keep modesty and natural life.  Nam June Paik

Korean-born American artist Paik influence the art of video and television intensely.

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TV Garden (1974)

 

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V-yramid (1982)
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Computerised One Hundred Flowers, 1998

 

 

Electronic super highway –

“Skin has become inadequate in interfacing with reality. Technology has become the body’s new membrane of existence.” —Nam June Paik

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Contemporary Media Studies

Contemporary media can be used interchangeably in various context with different authors.  What this research mostly referring to  Lev Manovich who describes the technology as an inseparable component of the digital media and work on the data mining in digital environments, Andreas Treske who presents video, as an immersive atmosphere, which resists the narrative dictatorship and lastly Ernst Wolfgang who wrote an archive-oriented media theory and assert the dynamic nature of the digital video archive.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee

He regarded as inventor of the World Wide Web in 1989 while he was working in the Cern.

There are three the key innovations that formed the Web;  HTTP (hypertext transfer protocol); allows you to click on a link and be brought to that document or Web page,  URLs (universal resource locators, which Tim originally referred to as URIs, for universal resource indicators); URLs serve as an address for finding that document or page, and HTML (hypertext markup language); gives you the ability to put links in documents and pages so they connect.

Tim Berners Lee has a analogy between web and  market economy:

“anyone can trade with anyone else without having to go to a physical market square to do it. The traders just need to know the rules. The hardest thing for people to grasp about the Web is that it has no center; any computer (or node, in mathematical terms) can link to any other computer directly, without having to go through a central connection point. They just need to know the rules for communicating.”

Video

According to the Video theory, which is written by Andreas Treske, media technologies require us to navigate through the world of meaning, into images that make our memories. These timeless or time thickened images change the atmosphere, take us to the ground zero feeling. “We are immersing in video atmospheres”, says Treske. Videos as forms of realness give us a new space under the different light in time. Inevitably, video becomes atmospheric. Collectively produced sphere consist of many space that mirrors the subjectivity of the user and determines the user’s interaction with society. Video spreads meaningful acts around the network, inhabited spaces, and environments. According to Treske, our imagination helps us to avoid to become dizzy and create a whole video out of the fragmented clips. Therefore, our imagination will determine our future more than ever in the history.

The beauty of video, says Treske comes from the uncontrolled and unstructured nature of it; it does not underlie a system of narrative dictatorship.


Digital Compassion with online video


Compression

Multimedia is not solely for human eyes. Undetachable loss for human eye might be detect by machines easily and might cause a salient error.