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February 14, 2007

Programmable Media:


Open Platforms for Creativity and Collaboration

Programmable Media: Open Platforms for Creativity and Collaboration :: A symposium organized and presented by New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc., hosted by Pace Digital Gallery :: Date: March 2, 2007 :: Time: 10 am to 3:30 pm :: Venue: Multipurpose Room, 1 Pace Plaza, Pace University :: Contact: Helen Thorington (newradio[at]turbulence.org); Jillian McDonald (jmcdonald2[at]pace.edu). Registration is encouraged: email turbulence at turbulence.org.

In July 2004 the not-for-profit media organization New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc. began the networked_performance blog to chronicle observations that internet based creative practice is expanding due to the ready availability of wireless, mobile, and GPS computational devices and the emergence of the programmable web. We observe that artists, designers and researchers working in digitally networked and programmable environments are increasingly making projects that are media platforms, tools and services which are open and contingent upon participation and the contribution of content to realize them.

Programmable Media: Open Platforms for Creativity and Collaboration, hosted by Pace University, will explore two forms of current practice. First, the creation of original software to create tools and services for creative and social use, such as a freely available 3-D drawing tool and musical instrument, or a public commons meta layer conceived as a continuous public space for collaboration. Second, the creation of original work using the tools available within open platforms such as Second Life and MySpace to build community and raise awareness.

PARTICIPANTS: John (Craig) Freeman, Tom Igoe, Cary Peppermint, Amit Pitaru, Michelle Riel, Helen Thorington, and Mushon Zer-Aviv and Dan Phiffer.


10:00 - 10:45 am: Introduction: Social Coding: Tools, Platforms, Systems

Helen Thorington: Turbulence.org's networked_performance blog
Michelle Riel: Siting this Symposium in current practice
Q&A (audience)

10:45 - 11:00 am: Transition

11:00 am - 12.20 pm: Roundtable 1

Mushon Zer-Aviv + Dan Phiffer: The Social Space of the Net: ShiftSpace
Amit Pitaru: Sonic Wire Sculptor
Tom Igoe: Networked Objects: Email Clock & Air Quality Meter & others
Discussion (with moderators)
Q&A (audience)

12.20 - 2:00 pm: lunch break

2:00 - 3:20 pm: Roundtable 2

Cary Peppermint: The Performative Space of the Net
John (Craig) Freeman: Particapatory Installation Art in Second Life
Michelle Riel: Responsive Soft-Biological System
Discussion (with moderators)
Q&A (audience)

Participant Biographies:

John (Craig) Freeman is an artist and educator who uses digital technologies to produce place-based virtual reality and site-specific public art. The virtual reality work is made up of projected interactive environments that lead the audience from global satellite images to immersive, user navigated scenes on the ground. As one explores these virtual spaces, the story of the place unfolds in a montage of nonlinear media. Freeman's work has been exhibited internationally. He has recently introduced it into the 3-D graphical world of Second Life. Freeman is currently an Associate Professor of New Media at Emerson College in Boston.

Tom Igoe teaches courses in physical computing and networking, exploring ways to allow digital technologies to sense and respond to a wider range of human physical expression. Coming from a background in theatre, his work has centered on physical interaction related to live performance and public space. His current research focuses on ecologically sustainable practices in technology development. Along with Dan O'Sullivan, he co-authored the book "Physical Computing: Sensing and Controlling the Physical World with Computers," which has been adopted by numerous digital art and design programs around the world. He is working on another book on networked objects, for O'Reilly Media, due out in 2007. Projects include a series of networked banquet table centerpieces and musical instruments; an email clock; and a series of interactive dioramas, created in collaboration with M.R. Petit. He has consulted for The American Museum of the Moving Image, EAR Studio, Diller + Scofidio Architects, Eos Orchestra, and others. He is a contributor to MAKE magazine and a collaborator on the Arduino open source microcontroller project. He hopes someday to work with monkeys, as well.

Cary Peppermint is a conceptual artist who works with digital technologies and performance art. He is assistant professor of art at Colgate University where he teaches courses in the theory and practice of digital art. Cary is known for his website "Restlessculture.net." which serves as a platform for his ongoing series of networked performances. His latest works engage the concepts of wilderness, space, the American frontier, and environmental ethics and explore how new media technologies both limit and expand our conceptions of nature and the environment, questioning how we live and make art with and in nature. Cary has curated international exhibitions of digitally infused eco-art including, “Technorganic” and “Wilderness Information Network” which both took place in the upper Catskills of New York state. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including a Franklin Furnace Performance Grant, Experimental Television Workshop Grant, and NYSCA's Decentralization Grant. His work is in the collections of the Walker Art Center, Rhizome.org at the New Museum for Contemporary Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, and Computer Fine Arts.

Dan Phiffer is a new media hacker from California, interested in exploring cultural dimensions of inexpensive communications networks such as voice telephony and the Internet. Drawing on his computer science background, Dan's software projects seek to provide meaningful creative opportunities through intuitive user interfaces. Dan now lives in Brooklyn, New York and is pursuing a Masters from NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program.

Amit Pitaru is an artist, designer and researcher of Human Machine Interaction (HCI). Amit cross-palliates his work between a wide range of fields; As an artist, he develops custom-made musical and animation instruments, and has recently exhibited/performed at the London Design Museum, Paris Pompidou Center, Sundance Film festival and ICC Museum in Tokyo. Amit is also a designer with particular interest in Assistive Technologies and Universal Design. He is currently commissioned by the MacArthur Foundation to write a chapter for an upcoming book on his recent work - creating toys and software that are inclusively accessible to people with various disabilities. As an educator, Amit develops curriculums that focus on the coupling of technology and the creative thought process. He regularly teaches at New York University's ITP and Cooper Union's Arts department.

Michelle Riel is associate professor of new media and chair of the Teledramatic Arts and Technology Department at California State University Monterey Bay. Riel collaborates with turbulence.org on the networked_performance blog, documenting and presenting on emerging work that is both networked and live. She is an award winning designer and NEA commissioned net artist. Her current work, antSongs, is a responsive music system collaborating with ants to explore issues of sustainability, community, and globalism.

Helen Thorington is an award winning writer, sound composer and media artist. Thorington is founder and co- director of the independent media organization, New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc., whose projects include the national weekly radio series, New American Radio, Turbulence.org (1996-present), and the networked_performance blog (2004-present). Thorington publishes and presents internationally on these projects. She is currently teaching in the Department of Arts and New Media at Emerson College.

Mushon Zer-Aviv was born in Israel in 1976. He has been involved in and initiated cross-media projects in art, design, comics, animation, online culture and media activism. Co-founder of Shual.com design studio. A teacher at Shekar College of Design & Engineering. An active contributor to Pixelsurgeon.com, Exego.net and Maarav.org.il online magazines. Curated BD4D Tel-Aviv and started Upgrade! Tel-Aviv events, both series aimed at creating and developing the Israeli new-media creative network. Mushon is currently studying at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunication Program.

Posted by jo at February 14, 2007 12:12 PM