:: Monday, December 20, 2004 ::

ORIGINAL POST: Wednesday, December 15, 2004
BY: Eduardo Navas

For those who may not already know, Google is out to create a virtual library. The search engine juggernaut is working with Harvard, University of Michigan, Stanford as well as the New York public library.

In the News Hour, yesterday, Jason Pontin explained that the process of digitizing all the books from these institutions would take a long time. Google has claimed they will be scanning 50,000 pages a day, but considering the millions of books that need to be digitized, this will be a rather slow process. Ray Suarez, the interviewer, speculated 7 to 10 years.

Copyright is crucial here, as it has been with all other new media developments. Neither of the interviewees could give Suarez a straight answer on the implications of legal infringements over intellectual property.

What is certain is that this move by Google and the other institutions involved will change the way people do research. Indeed Paul Le Clerc, from the New York public library was already pointing this out.

ORIGINAL POST: Saturday, December 11, 2004
BY: Garrett Lynch

The Peoples Portrait is "a global Networked Public Art Project by Media Artist Zhang Ga".

Commissioned by Reuters, the project consists of kiosks located at various locations around the world connected to the Internet, which allow users to photograph and add themselves to a database of portraits. These are then displayed as a continuous slide show on the Reuters Times Square massive video and data display screen as well as on The Peoples Portrait website. The objective is essentially "to create a global portrait of people, rendered in real time and displayed instantly and simultaneously". The locations of the sitter / user and the spectator of the portraits are separated in physical space yet barely in time emphasizing how networked new media can close distances and cultural divides.

Primarily only on the internet for the moment The Peoples Portrait has previously shown at the Multimedia Art Asia Pacific Festival from the 27/10/04 - 27/11/04 and at the Dutch Electronic Arts Festival from the 09/11/04 - 21/11/04. Using kiosks or nodes of portrait gathering for the database from art events or galleries in Times Square New York, the central business district of Singapore City, Rotterdam in the Netherlands, Brisbane in Australia and Linz in Austria the portrait creates an overall cultural portrait across countries and continents yet also of art event audiences in those countries and continents.

ORIGINAL POST: Saturday, November 27, 2004
BY: Lora McPhail

Behold the withholden.

According to Alan Sondheim’s 26-point prosetry, “The General Principle of Narrative (Violence) Under Capital,” the first precept is “_withholding._” This blunt, yet impenetrable, dissertation aims to expose the manipulation of the social diegesis through the systematic denial of information with the purpose of elongating the meta-narrative, or rather the creation of such.

Sondheim’s ideas thread together into an absorbing suggestion, yet fall shy of proposing a clear theoretical explication. This is, however, not likely his purpose. Rather, I imagine, this piece seeks to provide a non-inclusive starting point for the consideration of a type of soft-fascism, and to encourage the examination of individual complicity in the, however stilted, telling of our cultural anecdote.


Presented in the current issue of Kritikos, Volume 1 2004

The purpose of the “ INTERNATIONAL AND INTERDISCIPLINARY JOURNAL OF POSTMODERN CULTURAL SOUND, TEXT AND IMAGE,” Kritikos, is “to publish work that materializes theoretical and artistic renderings of, and practical approaches to culture.” In particular, Kritikos seeks to publish work that is focused upon the currency of the postmodern, period.