I’m in Sydney this week for ISEA, first time for both. My paper:
OpenPaths: a new approach to aggregating personal geographic data
The collection of personal geographic data from mobile devices is a ubiquitous practice of service providers and application developers. These data are being stored, analyzed, and monetized primarily by corporate interests; there is limited agency for individuals over their own data. Awareness among the public regarding the value of their personal data is nascent. OpenPaths, created by the Research and Development Lab at the New York Times Company, is a platform and a model and a platform that demonstrates the collective value of personal data sovereignty. It was developed in response to widespread media coverage of the obfuscated but accessible location record generated by all Apple iOS devices. OpenPaths participants store their encrypted geographic data in a cloud infrastructure while maintaining ownership and programatic control. Projects of many kinds, from mobility research to expressive artwork, petition individuals for access to their data in exchange for a stake in the outcome of the project. Ultimately, we would like to activate the practice of “participatory sensing” on a large scale in a way that self-regulates the creation of ad-hoc geographic datasets. Furthermore, within a theoretical context, OpenPaths moves beyond locative media’s primary concerns with connectivity, the coupling of data to place, and spatial representation to address the components of an ethical implementation of crowd-sourced geographic systems in the age of “big data”. How can we seat the individual in a mode of control over personal geographic narratives in a society in which locative media has become banal?
Just wrapped up my third Eyeo Festival, fully inspirational. The vibe at Eyeo is such practitioners talk about the process behind the curtain, to their peers, which makes the hallway debates and beerside confessions all the more compelling. Coming this year as someone newly dedicated to pedagogy, chats with individuals engaging critically in that space that I’d yet to connect with such as Amit Pitaru (pictured) and Ali Momeni at the Code+Ed workshop were a hilight for me, as well as killer presentations by Daito Manabe and Rafael Lorenzo-Hammer. Also, James Patterson’s work was some of the first shit I saw on the web, and to have an unprintable conversation with him was rad. But having so many of my talented friends together repping NYTLabs, Eyebeam, Columbia SIDL, DIY, rules.
A reminder that it’s not so much about projects as it is cultivating presence of being and perceiving the world.
This weekend I have been participating at the Sensor Journalism Workshop at the Tow Center, a research initiative headed by Emily Bell at Columbia’s School of Journalism.
The discussion has been spirited and wide ranging, but personal questions I’ve come away with include: What are the politics of sampling? When does the ethical interpretation of data require an expert (or when shouldn’t it?), How is data a manifestation of values? What distinguishes participatory sensing from surveillance? How does publication change data? What would an air-to-air DIY citizen resistance drone look like?
Sometime last year when I was at the Times R&D lab, we stumbled upon the Boston Globe’s coverage of Massachusetts Lt. Governor Tim Murray and his spectacular car crash. The crash had occurred under somewhat questionable circumstances, and Murray had not been forthcoming with any real explanation of how exactly he came to completely total his vehicle in the middle of the night and emerge totally unscathed. That in itself — politicians involved in sketchy shit — was not particularly notable. But the release of the black box data from the government-issued Crown Victoria was remarkable, both for the data itself and the role the data came to have in the story of the incident. Data are supposed to be objective, and the thought was that the black box would shed light on what really happened that night — but of course it just led to more questions.
I am very interested in how we re-perform data, in various ways, restoring the liveliness to what is supposedly an objective distillation of just the facts. I had the opportunity to write a piece for members of the Quiet City new music ensemble. I figured this might be an interesting subject to take on — could I write a piece that pulled directly from the data? What would having virtuosic musicians perform the piece do to embody this story in a different way? You’ll Just Have to Take My Word for It is the result. I’m pleased with it, I hope people appreciate the humor in it. Have a watch and let me know.
Featuring Steven Leffue on saxophone, Steve Cohen and Luke Schwartz on guitars.
Megapolis Audio Festival! I have a brief talk Saturday on performing data and some of my recent research, and I am performing the following experiment with participants:
(an experiment in data, control, aural empathy, and time-shifted masses)
This is a webapp for iOS. Using your iPhone’s accelerometer, it will record the cadence of your footsteps as you walk from 6th Ave to Broadway on 12th street. While you walk, you will hear a click track of the footsteps made by someone else who walked before you. Try and match them. After you’re done, your walk will guide someone else. And so on and so forth.
Quiet City is premiering a new piece of mine, You’ll Just Have to Take My Word for It, this Friday at the Secret Theatre. It’s a data-driven, polytempic work about storytelling and car crashes. I am really psyched to have Luke Swartz and Steve Cohen on electric guitars and Steven Leffue on tenor sax.
Quiet City Presents NYC Composers
Friday April 5th
Featuring work by: Drake Anderson, Guy Barash, Adam Cuthbért, Joe Fee, Ryan Homsey, Matthew Hough, Brian House, Vasu Panicker, Luke Schwartz, Viola Yip, and Gabriel Zucker
Featuring ensembles: Elevator Rose, First Construction, InnoVox + Sam Chernoff, Steven Cohen and other members of the Quiet City network
Brian House, Gabriel Netto, Micah Shippa, Marcelo Jácome, Túlio Pinto, Camilla Emson, Pablo Ferretti, Marcone Moreira
Opening reception: 28th March 2013 at 18.00
Exhibition: 28th March – 11th May 2013
Largo Das Artes Art Center
Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
Gallery Nosco and Largo das Artes are pleased to welcome the public to the opening of Binary on March 28th 2013. The innovative exhibition, curated by Cyril Moumen, is showcasing artists from the US, UK, and Brasil and heralding their arrival on the international scene.
An eclectic amalgamation of artistic mediums, the exhibition is comprised of new media, painting, photography, drawing, sculpture and sound module. The multifaceted combination diverse means of artistic construction enhance the structure of the exhibition.
Camila Emson’s paintings, Gabriel Netto’s drawings and Túlio Pinto’s sculpture are all utilized as starting points to navigate the exhibition and are indicative of the tension encircling artistic endeavour and its porous relationship with reality.
Brian House’s new media and sound piece, Micah Schippa’s video and Pablo Ferretti’s paintings, on the other hand, use layering of memory, stories and images to construct their works. While Ferretti’s work is analogue, however, Schippa and House manipulate the works between analogue and digital; Schippa’s commences as an analogue piece before morphing into digital in contrast to House who takes digital and transforms it into an analogue platform.
Marcelo Jacome’s unseen new body of work and Marcone Moreira photographs, continue to explore further dialogue with space and culture.
an international, interdisciplinary collaboration located at Brown University and traveling through different international locations in Bangalore, Oslo and London. It is an inquiry into the networked conditions of our times, and how they produce ways, conditions and habits of life and living which need to be unpacked beyond mapping and analyzing networks as producing seamless globalizations. Through a series of workshops, art residences, and dialogues, Habits of Living seeks to change the focus of network analyses away from catastrophic events or their possibility towards generative habitual actions that negotiate and transform the constant stream of information to which we are exposed.
My current practice is concerned with interpreting and intervening in the rhythms of everyday life as they have been transformed through the permeation of data. With the rise of network culture, data has become a primary resource — the data exhaust of our every move is mined for value by corporate and state interests. My work endeavors toward an alternative means of relating to this information, primarily through physical and musical performances, that emphasize the contingent and subjective qualities of information rather than narratives of computation and control. Sound, as a physical property, and the dynamic and ephemeral nature of musical systems, allow an especially intuitive and embodied sense of data as it relates to our temporal behavior in the world. As such, I am interested in the ways we find to understand time, and how a musical analysis of our quotidian rhythms might be employed to evince sites of political and aesthetic contention.