Laptopograms

Laptopograms

Seen in this full screen laptopogram are After the Bath by William Bouguereau, Poppy in Klotski, terminal running dmesg, and the Phoenix fractal from Xaos.

Laptopograms are images made by pressing photosensitive paper onto a laptop screen and flashing an image in a manner not unlike contact printing or photograms.

‘Laptopogram’ is a misnomer - I reckon they can be made with pretty much any monitor. Perhaps ‘Luminous Screen Emulsion Transfers’ is a better.

Here, however, the negative is a digital image - and is flashed for a little time onto the paper before developing the image in a darkroom.

( via bruces)

Brings to mind Van Eck phreaking.

A Mind Forever Voyaging

A Mind Forever Voyaging

You play as a ‘normal’ guy in a ‘normal’ South Dakota town. However, you find out that you are actually a computer - a computer simulation of a ‘normal’ guy in a ‘normal’ town, designed by the government. You’ve been sent ten years into the future to see how a new government program affects the town and its residents. You’re to monitor the town and return with recommendations on how to alter the program. As you’re a computer, you can remove yourself from the simulation at any time and read up on news and information in communications mode as well as take control of the other computers in the complex.

A bit of Z-machine trivia:

AMFV is the first Infocom game with the “oops” command—in which a typographical error in a previous command could be re-written without re-typing the entire command.

In Still Life 2001-2010

In Still Life 2001-2010

John Baldessari’s In Still Life 2001-2010 is a continuation of his 2001 piece In Still Life, which invited LACMA visitors to digitally rearrange 38 objects within Abraham van Beyeren’s Banquet Still Life (1667), creating a new still life of their own.

The newly launched site expands the project’s audience and participants to anyone with a flash-enabled browser, allowing you to rearrange the banquet and share your work via Twitter, Flickr, and Facebook. Here’s the Flickr stream of still lifes. But it doesn’t stop there, there’s also an iPhone app to (re-)create on the go.

In Still Life 2001-2010 was launched in tandem with the Baldessari retrospective Pure Beauty at LACMA.

( via kp)

A Tangle of Octopuses

A Tangle of Octopuses

All Sorts had a competition for users to illustrate collective nouns from their database. The winning illustrations are now available as two color prints.

Craters of the Moon

Craters of the Moon

Props to the National Park Service for keeping it Müller-Brockmann 4 Life, but damn do these things stand out on a rack of brochures in a Visitors’ Center. Every other one is like “HAHA GET IT THE LETTERS ARE MADE OF ROPE BECAUSE THIS IS IDAHO AND THERE IS SAGEBRUSH HERE LIKE A COWBOY”, then this chill customer is all “I don’t even care if you see the craters of the moon. They should make a park just for me, the brochure.”

I like these so much that I am starting to feel bad for shitting Massimo Vignelli’s stupid subway map so much. Psyche.

%s1 / %s2

On the Subject of Labyrinths

On the Subject of Labyrinths

The 2nd floor of Holmes Castle.

The ground floor of the Castle contained Holmes’ own relocated drugstore and various shops, while the upper two floors contained his personal office and a maze of over one hundred windowless rooms with doorways opening to brick walls, oddly angled hallways, stairways to nowhere, doors openable only from the outside, and a host of other strange and labyrinthine constructions. Holmes repeatedly changed builders during the construction of the Castle so only he fully understood the design of the house he had created, thus decreasing the chance of being reported to the police.

RAM 2/9

RAM 2/9

Edward Zajec, RAM 2/9, 1969

( via translab)

Zajec/ComPlot

Zajec/ComPlot

Edward Zajec, RAM 13, 1969
Computer: IBM 7044
Printer: CalComp Plotter 563

Zajec writes of the evolution of his work in Artist and the Computer:

At first I designed programs in which, given a basic repertoire of signs and a set of combinatory rules, the qualitative value of each possible combination depended on a predetermined balance between probability and chance. Later, I tried to extend the autonomy of the programs by developing systems which could produce a number of different combinatory strategies. This was achieved by introducing a determinant tendency which kept referring to a few basic criteria for guidance and qualitative feedback.

Self Correcting Labyrinths and Virtual Journeys

Self Correcting Labyrinths and Virtual Journeys

Been awhile since BLDGBLOG showed up here, and this has been on my mind for the last month or so.

McElhinney went on to build his own full-scale “switching labyrinth” near London’s Euston Station. Participants in this experiment “animated” McElhinney’s switching labyrinth by way of “a stepper motor and slide mechanism” that, together, were “able to periodically shift, ‘switching’ openings to offer alternative entrance and exit paths.”

After watching all this unfold, McElhinney suggested that further research along these lines could help to reveal architectural moments at which there is an “emergence of labyrinthine, or familiar, spatialities within an unknown or changing maze framework.”

The labyrinthine caverns of Zork and the non-visual structure of Infocom games are mentioned, and I would love to see a visualization comparing human traversals of real-world maze-like spaces and navigations of those same spaces using virtual interfaces– both text-based and those rendered with state of the art first-person-shooter engines.

( via bldgblog)

Al’s List

In early 1966, the Diggers were promoting a new type of philosophy and life concept in the Haight Ashbury. With media coverage of the district increasing, local resident Al Rinker visualized the need for a service providing news and information about the Hippie movement. He rented an apartment at 1830 Fell Street in early 1967, adjacent to the Panhandle of Golden Gate Park, to act as both his home and headquarters of his conceptual “Switchboard”.

Even before the internet, San Franciscans were building websites. I wonder how this worked? Basically you call somebody up, tell them what you’re looking for, and then you listen to the choices? Like craigslist-over-voice?

Social networking took a back seat to the more critical services required by the population explosion. In summary, the Switchboard was created, then made useful by events not originally considered and grew to fill those needs as well as those in its original plan.

They even had the business model figured out already.

( via Wikipedia)

There ought to be – and perhaps there is – a piece of software, or an option in Photoshop, that will turn a photograph of a person into an image of the full-size bronze classically executed statue (with choice of pedestal) that it might but never will be. Of course with a graphics program it could be immediately be made three dimensional and able to be seen from all sides. Is this an app that should be created? I want a nice green patina with just the minimum of birdshit stains to give the grandeur of permanence. I would use it as my Author Photo.

John Crowley

However all this was understood in 1943, when I came upon it, the idea that a single reality underlies music and mathematics, art and science, expressible only in a nonverbal language of very cool hieroglyphs, was irresistible, attracting the serious psychedelic vanguard and the daily dope smokers alike. It was easy to feel that our late-night speculations in aromatic Hoboken lofts or Topanga cottages were games of the same kind, and we were players (though doubtless we more closely resembled the vain and fatuous spielers of the Feuilletonist Age). But we were drawn also by a game “played” more as music is played than as a sport is played, a game that players spend a lifetime learning and yearning to excel in, but in which they can excel only by cooperating, not competing: you triumph at the Glass Bead Game only insofar as other players do too. No one is defeated. That’s what got to me, and what I talked about with others, when I first read the book.

John Crowley reconsiders The Glass Bead Game for Lapham’s

A Cosmic Scale

A Cosmic Scale

But just as an artful organist, when he has previously gone through and tried each of the stops separately, finally draws all the stops of the whole organ together in order to hear the general consonance of all the pipes, so also the the eternal Archmusician, after the separate preludes of the six days’ work, finally lets the entire great world-organ play, because he has created the human being as the microcosmos, the most perfect creature.

– Athanasius Kircher, Musurgia Universalis (1650)

( via here)

A Most Certain, Strange, and True Discovery

A Most Certain, Strange, and True Discovery

The pamphlet, written during the Civil War, describes how the witch was fired at by soldiers of the army of the Earl of Essex, “but with a deriding and loud laughter … she caught their bullets in her hands and chew’d them”. Eventually however one of the soldiers succeeded in shooting her.

Rocket from the Tombs was always doomed. Everything from Cleveland was doomed. Rocket from the Tombs is totally inconsequential and irrelevant. Pere Ubu is totally inconsequential and irrelevant. That is the power of Cleveland. Embrace, my brothers, the utter futility of ambition and desire. Your only reward is a genuine shot at being the best. The caveat is that no one but your brothers will ever know it. That’s the deal we agreed to.

David Thomas

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