Hi List,

Thanks for your perspective with examples Johannes. I hope to attend one of
your future performances but can't make it on the 3rd of April. Thanks Jack
for your explanation of your works and a bit of history (glad this
discussion is getting you thinking/creating), and thanks Ami for piping in
and telling us about Banner Repeater and your exploration of transport and
language performativity through your own work as well as your curatorial
work at BR.  What a unique venue and audience for this kind of work.

GH - On your comments regarding *Toast - *Text-to-speech is so little used
because it still hasn't been perfected to work smoothly.  I like your
comment about the user altering his behavior to conform to how the
translation works, learning the tool and finding out what works and what
doesn't - the machine and the user would be creating their own language
that finds a middle ground of functionality/understanding. I would like to
try this with the device, though I realize that the language that is
created is going to be totally customized to the person using it.

Jack, you mention "enacting versus watching".  In some of my works,
including *Vacant Quarters*,
the visitor's face and act of looking are the interface that
starts/continues the interaction (which here results in a conflagration of
circus wagons).  In *Vacant Quarters* I am exploring looking itself as
a destructive act (which it can be when the act of staring into media
perpetuates further creation/display of media).

And GH - an exhibition of the 1400 list members would be epic, and based on
this discussion and others, q u i t e - b r o a d in subject matter and


On Wed, Mar 26, 2014 at 11:56 AM, gh hovagimyan <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Hi Victoria & List,
> On Mar 25, 2014, at 10:10 PM, Victoria Bradbury wrote:
>  spoke other languages as their native tongue.  Those living in Beijing
>> were
>> already accustomed to crossing cultures and language barriers, so the
>> concept of words being lost in translation resonated with them.  An
>> unexpected outcome was that those who were able to read and speak both
>> English and Mandarin seemed to gain the most satisfaction out of
>> interacting with *Toast* because the "success" or "failure" of the
>> translation was evident.
> I think you could call the software a co-performer. The software does have
> "performativity"
> based on it's classic definition. Interestingly, the creative parts are
> the mistakes the code makes.
> This hooks into the neural paths of language especially wordplay and puns.
>  The piece works because the code is imperfect.
> Why is it imperfect? Because the code can't laugh at it's own mistakes and
> learn from them.
> The deeper significance is that a person working with your piece would
> eventually learn what words have problems being
> translated and would alter the text of what they spoke into the machine so
> the translation would come out correctly and still preserve the
> intention of the speaker.  In that case the human alters their behavior or
> speaking patterns to conform to the machines needs.  It's like learning to
> use a tool properly.
> A larger discussion is how computer interfaces are altering human
> language. You know tweets, technical jargon, translation software.  Also
> how human behavior has become altered.
> If you walk down the street today in New York, i/2 the people are looking
> at their cellphones.  Their sense of being and place is split between the
> real world and the data-sphere.
> Is that good? Is that bad? Is it Plato's shadow world?

// Victoria Bradbury
Researcher @
New Media Caucus <> <CommComm>
Attaya Projects <> // Collaborator