From Marc Tuters:
Begin forwarded message:
> From: marc <[log in to unmask]>
> Date: 14 April 2004 14:12:46 BST
> Andreas Broeckmann wrote: "turn the 'locative media' movement into
> something of an avantgarde of the 'society of control'. i believe that
> people are aware of the ambivalence,"
> This seems a little obvious to me really, I've always felt that in a
> society that emphasize individualism, you can pretty much assume this
> will be the first thing in people's minds when you talk of a
> technology that involves location.
> It's always been my attitude that you start with the assumption that
> mobile technology not only will track you, but is tracking you, and
> work backwards from a frank acceptance of the _existing_ society of
> control to develop useful hacks.
> Andreas Broeckmann wrote: "Drew has written about this, but i am
> wondering at which level this critical aspect is brought into an arts
> project. (as the marginalised 'yes, but'?)"
> I think that an interesting critical-theoretical discussion of the
> aesthetics of this new medium would explore how it really begs to be
> framed through a new metaphor, that of the city and the vehicle rather
> than the screen...
> In a text Jordan Crandall posted to Nettime in '97
> <www.nettime.org/Lists-Archives/nettime-l-9710/msg00027.html> he
> argued that we need a new metaphor to replace that of the cinematic
> theater - "a methaphor that begins to de-emphasize the visual field
> and instead emphasize procedures of mobilization... The visual field
> is either disappearing or becoming something of a decoy, depending how
> you look at it. It is disappearing by imploding (miniaturizing) on
> the way toward direct INSERTION INTO THE BODY; or it is disappearing
> by expanding outward to take over the whole of reality itself - which
> is the condition of immersion. The culture industry - that vast
> preparatory field for the forces of globalization - has stepped in to
> supply the distance-denying ideology that immersion requires. It
> celebrates the narrowing of distances between users and computers;
> between geographical locations; and between representations and
> places. The distance between urban structures and images has narrowed:
> urban environments seem to arise spontaneously out of representations
> as representations construct urbanity. The impulse to conflate
> representation and place is none other than that of VR. But perhaps
> above all the culture industry celebrates the evacuation of the
> distances required for reflective thought itself. Who needs critical
> reflection when we have the epistemology of Technology? There is no
> time for reflection -- there is NO LONGER TIME FOR THE IMAGE: as
> Arthur Kroker has pointed out, the media are "too slow."
> Of course Virilio anticipated the whole discussion in "Art of the
> Motor" (although he's never gone much further with it): "If the world
> is closing in on itself and becoming a finite world, according to
> Merleau- Ponty, the necessity of overtaking it becomes patently
> obvious. Where the far horizon of our planet's antipodes has finally
> become an apparent, or more precisely, "trans- apparent" horizon,
> through the special effects of audiovisual techniques, the urgent
> necessity of another limit, a new frontier, suddenly makes itself
> felt--one that would no longer be geographic but infographic; the
> mental image of far distances hidden by the curve of the globe
> yielding to the instrumental imagery of a computer that can generate a
> virtual otherworld, thanks to the computing speed of its integrated
> circuits. Scott Fisher claims apropos, "As the processing power and
> graphic frame rate on microcomputers quickly increase, portable,
> personal virtual- environment systems will also become available. The
> possibilities of virtual realities, it appears, are as limitless as
> the possibilities of reality. They can provide a human interface that
> disappears--a doorway to other worlds."
> Virilio ends his argument like this: "One last remark: if rapid
> globalization of trade implies, as we have seen, the virtualization of
> diverse strategic, economic, and scientific representations, a
> formidable problem arises: that of the precise physical location of
> the virtual object. With confusion setting in between the real space
> of action and the virtual space of retroaction, all positioning is, in
> fact, beginning to find itself in an impasse, causing a crisis in all
> position forecasting. This "delocalization" also leads to uncertainty
> about the place of effective action, so that pre- positioning becomes
> impossible, which then undermines the whole principle of forecasting.
> When WHERE loses its priority to WHEN and HOW, a doubt remains--not
> about the effective plausibility of "virtual reality" so much as about
> the nature of its location and thereby about the very possibility of
> controlling the virtual environment. Here is an anecdote that
> illustrates the inventory of a world that will from now on be lived in
> real time. A new type of watch has been on the market for a while now
> in the United States. The watch does not tell the time; it tells you
> where you are. Called the GPS--an abbreviation for Global Positioning
> System--this little everyday object probably constitutes the event of
> the decade as far as globalization of location goes."
> (Inspired by this though I wrote a text in about this which posited
> locative media as a kind of paradoxical extension of military control,
> as well as a potential means towards a liberatory "spatial practice":
> My point, I guess, is that while surveillance is in some crucial way
> at the core of this new medium, we should perhaps look to develop a
> more sophisticated critique than just dragging out Foucault
> foucault.disciplineAndPunish.panOpticism.html> or even Deleuze
> <www.california.com/~rathbone/deleuze.htm>, _yet again_
> The art that uses this technology has become a lot more sophisticated
> over these past couple years, so should the theory.
> consider the story below. in short, the runners of the london
> marathon will be carrying chips that will trigger SMS/text messages
> sent to their friends and relatives to report their progress in the
> race. any guesses for applications of this technology outside of the
> sports domain?!
> this is not to say that artistic work in this field is impossible. i
> believe that, for instance the Milk project by Polak/Auzina might be
> a clever way of approaching the issues by simulating the tracking of
> trade routes.
> so much for the moment.
> greetings from sunny berlin,
> IT sets the pace at London marathon
> By Emma Nash [31-03-2004]
> Runners' times and positions will be logged by electronic tags
> This year's Flora London Marathon will be the most IT-enabled race in
> the history of the event.
> More than 33,000 runners competing in the marathon on 18 April will
> have their positions tracked and recorded by electronic tags
> attached their shoes.
> Friends and family of competitors will also be able to follow their
> progress by signing up to an SMS text message service that will send
> athletes' positions as they make their way around the 26 mile, 385
> yard course.
> Supplier Datashare has been appointed to design, co-ordinate and
> manage the IT infrastructure for the event.
> Paul Hepburn, technology consultant at the London Marathon, says
> eight Oracle databases will communicate with 40 PCs positioned
> around the course to keep track of athletes, relaying information to
> commentators, the BBC, press and race organisers.
> 'The whole design of everything is based around keeping it small,' he
> 'We do not try to use the latest technology, because the more
> complicated we make it, the more difficult it is on race day. We
> only get one go at this.'
> When athletes register before the race, they will be given an
> electronic tag, supplied by Champion Chips, which will be attached
> to their shoe.
> Special mats will be positioned every 5km along the marathon course.
> When an athlete runs over the mat, their time and position is sent
> to an Oracle database.
> 'At locations throughout the course when people run across some of
> the mats it will trigger an SMS message,' said Hepburn.
> Mobile network Orange will provide the text service, which athletes
> have to sign up to before the race.
> Because the marathon is a one-off event, the systems must as robust
> as possible and thoroughly tested, says Hepburn.
> 'This is a big project, but what is more crucial is the not the
> technology, but the timescales we have to deploy,' he said.
> 'What we've been doing is building all the PCs and taking all the
> databases to simulate everything on race day