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May 142012


From humble beginnings…

Mar 122012

Click here to view this post as a google doc with images etc.


The current features include edited videos of three famous people addressing the camera, as viewed through a video remixer. The Max/MSP patch cycles randomly through each monologue and also group speak, with all three monitors talking at once. There isn’t really a conversation, more a bombardment of information. It is unclear to the user what if anything would contribute to this conversation.

If the participant speaks, an “interruptometer” magnifies his/her voice and pauses all other video. There are also speed controls to warp the content, and a pace control that sets the speed of the cycler. There is limited voice recognition, certain phrases I have taught the system, but it is proving buggy at best during user testing. These features can be easily mapped, like if no one is using the microphone, the videos could slow down gradually to reflect the lack of input.

This is meant to start prototyping the vision­—an immersive conversation told through YouTube content exploring the relationship between:
• Human and video performance
• Celebrity and familiarity
• Experience prototyping and futuristic interactions
• Copyright and content appropriation.

I’m proposing a New York themed conversation with a working title of “Only Living Boy NY”, (does this make sense?) because I am drawn to the content—the oral history of this amazing city as told by its notable citizens. This conversation prototype is suited to the NY gallery audience in a couple of months.

I like the disconnected poetry from the current videos I am working with, but I do not think that chaos is the point I originally set out to make. I’d like to create something that is a little bit more thoughtful and clear, more to the point to prove my thesis statement, which is shaping up to look something like:

New dialogues emerge from a vast online archive. The installation represents a tool for lonely people, but can never capture the poetry of real human interaction. It attempts to leave the participant considering his/her dialogue and performance within the context.

I will need to change my marketing, mock-up, and look book to New York notables as the characters will now follow from the content. I want the New York theme to dictate the panel of experts, but based on a New York query rather than by searching for random celebrities and then choosing a topic. I think that is a more evolved search for a mashup project. I also want to include a line of people waiting to get in the room on my mock-up. The user scenario should be clear that someone may be exiting to talk about the experience with a friend who was in prior, but this is for one participant at a time.

• Edit three new videos with a common theme for a more cohesive conversation: NY theme and NY-appropriate characters.
• Instantiate characters as independent video objects. My equipment request is in to Sven Travis via Katherine Moriwaki for three Mac Minis and three monitors.
• Live listen: video loop of the characters pausing to ‘listen’ to the words coming from the participant.
•Since audio recognition is not working well, inputs need to come from a controller of some sort. The microphone cannot be used exclusively to control the action of the video. I plan to print the words coming from the participant so that there is a devoted display of everything the people have said. The accuracy will be imperfect, but this needs to be part of the upcoming prototype for testing.

Sign on the door: This piece is intended for one person at at time. Please wait your turn.

start at 1:42
The Wooster Group: On LSD


My Dinner with Andy is a video-narrative immersive experience told through publicly-available crowd-sourced videos from YouTube. It represents an intimate dinner party featuring the edited likeness of:

Hosted by ANDY COHEN

Participants are invited to book a 1-hour reservation for breakfast, lunch, or dinner over the 1-week installation on google docs. They can BYOB (B = bagged lunch) or order delivery (anything imaginable via from the project homepage. The installation is a dinner party, as told in three acts: appetizer, entree, and dessert. The table must be reserved by individuals.

The video accompaniment to the meal lasts approximately 40 minutes and starts 10 minutes past every hour, with time between participants to clean up or talk about the experience, leave feedback, join the discussion online, or in person in the gallery.

The audience: the meal takes place in a glass room gallery and participants become part of the narrative. Prompts leave gaps in the dialogue for the participant to weigh in on subjects like marriage equality in New York, war, and classicism. There will be a microphone in front of the participant’s meal. Although the video narrative is set, the participant can affect the performance through his/her participation or lack thereof. There are a few interactive surprises in store.

Participants are encouraged to eat, talk, and be entertained over the course of the meal, but their performance is up to them and spontaneously generated. The installation is a prototype for a completely interactive virtual reality. For this piece, participants are encouraged to suspend disbelief and interact with the screen characters as if they were the real people they represent.

This meal represents a tool for lonely people, entertainment that mimics reality and closeness with any famous person imaginable. “Just a movie” that encourages participation and performance. Dave Carroll told me that if I didn’t like the conversations that were occurring online, to create my own dialogue. I am hoping that by mashing up these different video shorts and blips and images and animations, I can attempt to create my own reality and dialogue.

“If you could have dinner with three people dead or alive, who would it be?” These are my three people, an artist, a deity, and a television producer. The options are limitless, and readily available on YouTube for future projects and iterations.

Although SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) would have you believe this digital content is sacred intellectual property, and I agree that citing sources is paramount, by manipulating and mashing up the YouTube videos I have created a totally unique experience. SOPA will cripple the internet and artistic license. Piracy is not theft, as there is no damage or loss to the original artifacts in this case. Everything I have created is with total respect and homage to the original people and events that I am attempting to represent in the installation. My piece is pro- innovation and free speech.

About the author and his bias. The characters represented in this production are filtered through YouTube first and then my editing of an imaginary dialogue. I am gay, Jewish, and a student studying Design & Technology. Fascinated by art stars, reality television, celebrities, contact, crowd-sourcing, video, design, and technology, so my version of Jesus, benevolent and philosophical, may be different from your version of Jesus (and that is okay.)

Nov 132011

Prototyping HeebHub.


Future projects include:
Hanky code exploration
Weekly Heeb guy profile
Jewday/Gaydar game
Blind personals exploration