The role of the editor — the filter, the gatekeeper — is not one of much value in a world which is as happy watching a cameraphone video as it is 3D IMAX.
Interaction designers develop our digital everyday life. They concept, sketch and create new possibilities of interaction, which are evaluated with functional and technical prototypes.
The book “Prototyping Interfaces – Interactive Sketches with VVVV” covers within 280 pages the applied handling of interactive sketches with the visual programming language VVVV. It is divided into two main chapters, a theoretical and a practical part. The theoretical part concerns the definition and the meaning of the term “prototype” in the designprocess. The practical part of the book branches the basics of the visual programming language VVVV and how to control different electronic components with Arduino and VVVV. Beginning from the use of different sensors and actuators to modern tracking technologies like the xBox Kinect, different examples are explained within a wide range of tutorials.
Additional to the book a website is launched within the user finds the patches for every single example described in the book. Also the website provides technical support and a playground which can be used to upload and share private projects.
“Prototyping Interfaces” is addressed to designstudents, interactiondesigners and media artists.
My main reason for coming to Berlin this time was to see Nobukazu Takemura’s piece Internalised Foreign Bodies (Verinnerlichte Fremdkorper) at the Inhuman Music festival at HKW last night.
Since the turn of the century, Takemura — a shy, careful man whose life seems to revolve around art…
A bunch of stuff I did last week is summarized nicely at the Hubbub weeknotes. This is going to happen more and more often, so these weeknotes may become at risk. We’ll see what happens.
Anyway, I tried to dial into a conference call while there was a massive demonstration happening over at Wienerstraße #Lausitzer8. Having the riot police and the anarchists play tag below your window creates something of a racket:
This corner of Kreuzberg is becoming more and more interesting and I’m running into people randomly in various lunch places. Last week I had the pleasure to meet both Chris Eidhof (who we should see more of in this part of town) and Jannis Leidel.
Niels posted the second Recess! which was as awesome as I’d expected it to be.
On Thursday I went to the TPB AFK screening in c-base which was organized by Michelle Thorne after a conversation in a cafe here. I look forward to meeting lots more interesting people around the area and conspiring to do awesome things with them.
I wrote up the watersnake app I wrote over here. Expect to see us meddle more into these kind of systems from a game design point of view.
via Alper.nl » English http://bit.ly/WYcfgm
I swore to myself never to go to the theater again which took a lot of the pressure off. But yesterday I did go to see V. in Ballhaus Ost. The posters hanging around town piqued my interest that a group in Berlin would stage a text by Thomas Pynchon. And if anyone should break my own rules, it should be me.
German reinterpretations of English works are often problematic because of the language and culture ravine that lies between. That’s no different here. I often had the feeling that the people treating it or doing it don’t really understand the text and they’re just doing something. Just reading a text by Pynchon is no mean feat, let alone creating an adaptation to the stage.
The dramatic performances are more convincing than what I’ve seen in the larger venues here in Berlin. There is also a camera that shows us parts of the stage that are occluded. The bar and party area, the living room quarters with the Killroy curtain hanging in front of it. A refreshing addition especially because videography is anathema in traditional German theater.
The piece takes its time. Probably stemming from the misconception that things that have a long duration are profound. This can be true, but three hours is just in between a bearable evening play and the dramatic marathon that imbibes special meaning to the ordeal. It is amazing however that such theatric effort can be bought for €13, a steal whichever way you look at it.
After the first hour of trying to follow what was happening in various parts of the stage I had the realization that made everything fall into place. Instead of trying to follow the story I just thought back to The Invisibles, the legendary psychedelic graphic novel of disparate threads bound together by a crazed vision. After that I could just let the subsequent hours wash over me. Which raises the question: has there been an The Invisibles play yet? King Mob on the stage would kick Molière’s ass.
If you want to see over three hours of risky disjunctive theater, you should definitely go.
via Alper.nl » English http://bit.ly/Z4VJcM
My small project during Swhack was to create a django version of a delegated voting system partially inspired by Liquid Feedback and the manyfold problems that system has. In particular that it is written on such an esoteric stack that it is near impossible to get running without root on a Linux machine and let’s not even discuss the maintenance. What is even worse is that it makes it nearly impossible for outsiders to join the project and contribute to it significantly.
In this interview about Liquid Democracy you can read quite clearly how the technical mandate drives the direction of the project. Something that may not be very desirable if you think of it as a democracy-centric issue and not a technology-centric one.
So to see how hard it would be to write something similar in vanilla django. It’s easy to hate on django but you can find tons of people who can work on this in just about every major city, the framework and the documentation are mature and many parts of the framework can be called excellent.
I thought putting something together that at its core implements a delegated voting engine should be doable in an afternoon and it was. What took the most time was playing around with the settings of the testrunner which I hadn’t really used before. So the watersnake app in this project does majority voting on single proposals with support for delegation. To see it work you have to run the tests, but building this out into a full fledged (web) app that can be deployed to heroku with a single command is technically trivial (and also time consuming).
This wasn’t a stretch to implement right now because I’m also doing some other projects which border on collaborative writing/decision making/filtering. As always, technology is neither the problem or the solution, but certain technical systems grant different socio-technical affordances than others. I will probably not work on this unless there is a clear demand, but I thought it would be useful to debunk the idea that building such a system needs to be difficult or complex.
via Alper.nl » English http://bit.ly/UngoKe
Besides the immense amount of things we did over at Hubbub last week, I also spent a lot of time doing various other things which sort of amazed me to be honest.
Tuesday I went to the Netzpolitische Abend here in c-base where Janneke Slöetjes of Bits of Freedom was one of the speakers. It was great fun catching up with what they’ve been busy with and the activist’s life.
And on Saturday Jan Lehnardt and I organized the first Swhack Berlin, a commemorative hackathon to do the things that we would normally only talk about. A round-up of the things we did is still forthcoming, but everybody is super-busy of course. It was a lot of fun and I was pleasantly surprised even by the 10+ people who showed up and got busy. We’ll do another one sometime in the near future.
via Alper.nl » English http://bit.ly/YbhzbR