All Star Data Mappers
was an exhibition I curated for dataterra, a dLux Media Arts event held at Artspace, Sydney December 2002
The All Star Data Mappers is an inter/national survey of artists and designers who are building information vsisualisation software to navigate the complex terrain of the electronic datasphere. The works range from tools for the analysis of genome data sets and website structures to works that explores the side effects of our increasingly inter-dependent relationship with our computers... sharing fragments of the users personal data gleaned from their hard drive with other users to form a collective data unconscious. All Star Data Mappers will highlight artists/works that gather, process and redistribute.
::Benjamin Fry:: Valence acg.media.mit.edu/people/fry/valence/
In Valence, individual pieces of information are represented visually according to their interactions with each other. Valence can be used for visualizing almost anything, from the contents of a book to website traffic, or for comparing different texts or data sources. The resulting visualization changes over time as it responds to new data. Instead of providing statistical information, Valence furnishes a qualitative feel for the perturbations in the data and builds a self-evolving map driven by patterns. Valence uses the properties of organic systems (things like growth, atrophy, adoption and metabolism) as methods for building representations that are based on the interaction of many simple rules in an attempt to achieve a more telling representation.
This version of Valence is used for comparing the genomes of the human, fruit fly, and mouse. Several 'genome' projects are now nearing states of completion, and for biologists, a primary use of the data is to search for a gene sequence and see if it is found in the genome of another organism. If the sequence is found, it is then possible--based on what is known about the sequence as it is found in the other organism--to arrive at conclusions about the function of that particular sequence.
Tendril is a web crawler that creates dynamic 3D typographic structures from the content of web sites. Branches are formed from the text of a web page, each link on the page begins another branch for the linked page. Over time, the result is an enormous branching structure, built purely out of the text that is contained in a set of connected web pages, and guided by the hand of the user as they choose the direction of links that are followed. It is part of a series of research in information visualization that seeks to bring form and structure to very large sets of raw data that are continually undergoing change.
::Schoenerwissen (Anne Pascual and Marcus Hauer)::Minitasking www.minitasking.com/
Minitasking is a graphical browser for surfing the Gnutella network. Reliying on the peer-to-peer standard Gnutella, this application provides a visual manifestation of the properties of dynamic and temporarily created networks and introduces transparency to the exchange of data and network instability.
The design process of Minitasking served as an analysis of the gnutella network, a very popular shared virtual space. Distributed systems are a good example to study how digital strategies of the living world were installed by different technical and human factors, who were merged in such a temporally space. A discussion about the limits and the potential of these systems has to refer to the flow and exchange of data, the rhythm of behavior, as well as the rules of a distributed network. These topics should be linked to other experimental cultures marked by a-, di- and polysynchronous rhythms and their (im)materiality.
After connecting to the network, Minitasking represents other Gnutella servents it encounters as bubbles that vary in size and color depending on the amount of content they are hosting. When you enter a query for a file, the query is color-coded, and Minitasking then graphically "zaps" other servents, visualizing how many matches that servent has with another bubble that matches the color of the query. At the same time, queries received from other servents float around the screen.
:: Mary Flanagan :: [collection] www.maryflanagan.com/collection.htm
[collection] is a networked computer application that collects bits and pieces of data--sentences from email or letters, graphics, images cached by a web browser, sound files etc.- harvested from the hard drives of users who have downloaded the [collection] software. This data is shared over the network to form a dynamic three-dimensional collage that maps the collective data unconscious.
[collection] is a networked computer application that gathers up found material from various users' hard drives and collects them on a centralized server. Going from computer to computer, [collection] scours drives and collects bits and pieces of user's data - sentences from emails, graphics, web browser cached images, business letters, sound files-and creates a mobile mix of user experiences, operating system files, and normally hidden materials. The program explores a workstation's architecture and a user's personal history with the machine, creating this material into a moving, three dimensional, continuously shifting map which has been compared to a visible, virtual, networked collective unconscious. It also questions notions of authenticity and authorship in the digital age, breaking the conceptual line separating, for example, and emotional letter from html or a help file.
Firmament is Java application / PD patch that was built to interface with data coming from a radio telescope. It was initially developed during the acoustic.space.lab project at Ventspils Starptautiskais Radioastronomijas Centrs, the VIRAC radiotelescopes, Irbene, Latvia, in August 2oo1. The project was organised by RIX-C and involved more than 30 artists from all over the world.
Firmament reads in data coming in to the dish which is interpreted by a computer at the facility. Each line of data includes a UTC timestamp, the azimuth (the angle around the horizon) and the elevation of the dish (the angle up from the horizon towards the zenith, the point overhead) and the dish temperature or the strength of the signal received at that point in space. The 32m dish we were using was 'listening' at a frequency of 11GHz.
Firmament continues Kaye and Snow's investigations into the low tech poetics of space. Firmament is an applet that was built to interface with data coming from a radio telescope. It was developed during the acoustic.space.lab project at Ventspils Starptautiskais Radioastronomijas Centrs, the VIRAC radiotelescopes, Irbene, Latvia, in August 2001, a project involved more than 30 artists from all over the world.
The Secret Lives of Numbers (2002) is an interactive data visualization and online artwork, commissioned by Turbulence.org. An exhaustive empirical study was conducted to determine the relative popularity of every integer between zero and one million. The resulting information exhibits an extraordinary variety of patterns which reflect our culture, our minds, and our bodies-forming a numeric snaphot of the collective consciousness. In The Secret Lives of Numbers, these analyses are returned to the public in the form of an interactive visualization, whose aim is to provoke awareness of one's own numeric manifestations.
The authors conducted an exhaustive empirical study, with the aid of custom software, public search engines and powerful statistical techniques, in order to determine the relative popularity of every integer between 0 and one million. The resulting information exhibits an extraordinary variety of patterns which reflect and refract our culture, our minds, and our bodies.
We surmise that our dataset is a numeric snaphot of the collective consciousness. Herein we return our analyses to the public in the form of an interactive visualization, whose aim is to provoke awareness of one's own numeric manifestations.
"An Axis can't have more than three countries," explained Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. "This is not my rule, it's tradition. In World War II you had Germany, Italy, and Japan in the evil Axis. So you can only have three. And a secret handshake. Ours is wicked cool." (SatireWire, 2/2002)
President Bush's recent assertion that North Korea, Iraq and Iran form an "Axis of Evil" was more than a calculated political act -- it was also an imaginatively formal, geometric one, which had the effect of erecting a monumental, virtual, globe-spanning triangle.
Axis is an online tool intended to broaden opportunities for similar kinds of Axis creation. It allows its participant to connect any three points in space [countries] into a new Axis of his or her own design. With the help of multidimensional statistical metrics culled from international public databases, the commonalities amongst the user's choices are revealed. In this manner, Axis presents an inversion of Bush's praxis, obtaining lexico-political meaning from the formal act of spatial selection.