Urban Screens 09 reports online

Posted: December 10, 2009 at 5:04 pm  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: , , ,

On December 4, the INC organized the Urban Screens conference, in Trouw Amsterdam. Thanks to all the speakers and participants for their great contributions to this event! The videos will be online soon, and the conference bloggers Liliana Bounegru and Chris Castiglione have already put up all their reports, see all links below.

Urban Screens 09: The City as Interface

Reports Session 1: Urban Screens as Architecture
Matthijs ten Berge, Illuminate (NL)
Mettina Veenstra, Novay Research (NL)
Paul Klotz, Led-art (NL)

Reports Session 2: The Mobile Screen

Martijn de Waal, The Mobile City (NL)
Nanna Verhoeff, Utrecht University (NL)
Annet Dekker, Goldsmiths and Virtueel Platform (NL)

Auke Touwslager (NL) & Ursula Lavrencic (Slovenia), Cell Phone Disco

Reports Session 3: The Mediatized City
Theodore Watson (UK/NL) – Graffiti Research Lab
Juha Van ‘t Zelfde, VURB.eu (NL)
Gijs Gootjes, MediaLAB Amsterdam (NL)
Nanette Hoogslag, Visual Foreign Correspondents (NL)

Report Book launch: Urban Screens Reader

Introduction to the Reader by Sabine Niederer

US09 Report: Paul Klotz on light as artistic medium

Posted: December 4, 2009 at 1:25 pm  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: , , ,

Urban Screens 09: The City as InterfacePaul Klotz is an applied art engineer and light designer who focuses on interactive light installations for public spaces. By means of light and sound installations which react to and integrate the movements of the passersby or of the people which interact with them, he attempts influence the movements and behavior of people in public spaces.

Although some of his projects have a more obviously political dimension, such as the thermometer project, which aims to create awareness of environmental pollution, the primary function of his creative lighting installations is aesthetic and stems from his passion and fascination with light as medium. The content of his light installations is generated as a response to the data gathered by sensors at the location of the installation. In the thermometer installation for example, the light bar of the thermometer fluctuates according to the people or vehicles that are passing by, indicating the level of danger for the environment.

It would have been interesting to further find out from the artist: Why light? Besides the artist’s passion for it, how does light as medium in particular influence interaction with the installation and between individuals? How does the creative use of light in public space shape that space?

More information about Paul Klotz’s projects can be found on the artist’s website.

For more urban screens reports please go to: www.networkcultures.org/urbanscreens.

US09 Report: Mettina Veenstra on Public Screens and Social Capital

Posted: December 4, 2009 at 12:25 pm  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: , , ,

Urban Screens 09: The City as Interface Mettina Veenstra is the principal researcher and coordinator of the theme public spaces at Novay Research. Novay is a research institute for ICT driven innovation. Her presentation today at the Urban Screens conference focused on what public displays can do for public space in terms of stimulating encounters and interactions between people in public spaces. They aim to explore the role as public displays as external stimulus to create contact between people, a process called triangulation, with art being an important form of it. The speaker identified eight applications of public displays: information, entertainment, art and culture, advertising, communication, better services, e-participation (the stimulation of discussion on environment and other local issues) and influencing (colors or imagines that can improve the mood of people).

But why is it important to foster social interactions? According to Mettina Veenstra social interactions lead to social capital which is important for our well being and our economy. Some important issue which the research institute takes into account when creating installations for public space are: create local content, and allow people to interact with the screens by means of games for example. A list of their projects can be found on their website.

Another issue that is being researched by Novay is the integration of sensors and facial recognition technology in order to create context aware applications which can offer personalized information. The presentation was rather uncritical of the role of surveillance technology in public space.

Urban Screens 09: The City as Interface

Posted: December 4, 2009 at 10:37 am  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: , , ,

On the fourth of December, Trouw Amsterdam hosts the Urban Screens 09 seminar, about the City as Interface, or: from urban screens to media architecture in the city. At 1 pm, the Urban Screens Reader will arrive at the venue, which will be launched at 3.45 pm.

Follow us on Twitter: #urbanscreens, and Flickr (tag: urbanscreens). A report will be available on this blog soon.
See you at Trouw!

More information is online at www.networkcultures.org/urbanscreens/09/

Video Vortex V – Day 1

Posted: November 23, 2009 at 4:06 pm  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: , , , ,

System Flaws and Tactics

Screen shot 2009-11-21 at 15.54.53 Video Vortex V
After the opening speech by Bram Crevits (Cimatics) and Geert Lovink (Institute of Network Cultures), the 5th edition of Video Vortex kicked off at the amazing Atomium in Brussels.

The first session addressed System Flaws and Tactics. This session was inspired by the inherent errors, disabilities and restrictions of online video technology that often conduct our behaviour but can also provide inspiring new insights. Liesbeth Huybrechts and Rudy Knoops gave the first presentation of the day, titled 'Playing that video'. They work at the School of Communication and Multimedia Design (C-MD) in Genk, Belgium, where they lead the research group Social Spaces, on the topic of social, societal and spatial issues, using the internet as a tool and interface.
Video Vortex V Video Vortex V

After pointing at the rules of play and playground, and building on theory of tactics and strategy as defined by De Certeau, the presenters explored the diffuse difference between work and play in the age of new media. Knoops pointed out that Google employees get to spend 20% of their time 'playing', i.e. working on their own projects. In his recent work, Julian Kuecklich refers to this conflation of play and labour as 'Playbour'. Knoops and Huybrechts showed impressive work by the C-MD students in Genk, and called for play as a critical tool, and encouraged a practice of tactical play.

Video Vortex V
Next up was Brian Willems, who lectures in media culture as well as British and Irish Literature at the University of Split, Croatia. In his talk, titled 'Blindness: the inability of YouTube to read itself', he argued that online video often demonstrates blindness,as theorized by Paul de Man, Agamben, and Proust, and rather than being readable. He presented two cases of online video: The Rodney King Story, and Natalie Bookchin's installation 'Mass Ornament', which was presented by the artist herself at the Video Vortex conference in Split (2009).

According to Willems, the Rodney King story demonstrates how difficult it is to read video. In the video, King, lying on the ground, tried to get up when the police attacked him again. The police later stated that they considered his standing up as aggressive behaviour. The video does not clarify whether this was indeed the case. Therefore, Willems argues the video demonstrates its blindness. In this respect, the work by Natalie Bookchin is equally hard to read. Inspired by the chorus lines of the Tiller Girls, she selected and sorted YouTube dance videos so they form a chorus line, through montage, soundtrack and composition. Willems pointed out that the amount of screens, layers and motifs makes this video hard to read, and therefore confronts you with its illegibility or blindness.

Video Vortex V Video Vortex V
Rosa Menkman, artist, VJ and PhD candidate at KHM presented her Glitch Studies Manifesto, in which she called for a more drain approach of technology studies, which includes the study of its flaws and failures:
1. The dominant, continuing search for a noiseless channel has been, and will always be no more than a regrettable, ill-fated dogma.
2. Dispute the operating templates of creative practice by fighting genres and expectations!
3. Get away from the established action scripts and join the avant-garde of the unknown. Become a nomad of noise artifacts!
4. Use the glitch as an exoskeleton of progress.
5. The gospel of glitch art sings about new models implemented by corruption.
6. The ambiguous contingency of the glitch depends on its constantly mutating materiality.
7. Glitch artifacts are critical trans-media aesthetics.
8. Translate acousmatic noise and soundscapes into acousmatic video and videoscapes to create conceptual synesthesia.
9. Speak the totalitarian language of disintegration.
10. Study what is outside of knowledge, start with Glitch studies. Theory is just what you can get away with!

The session ended with a presentation by the artist Johan Grimonprez, who guided the audience through his You-tube-o-teque. And while the sphere of the Atomium was shaking because of an autumn storm, grimonprez created his own whirlwind, going from the history of the remote control and the invention of zap-proof commercials, to hitchcock pastiches and the swine flu vaccine scandal from 1976. (www.zapomatik.com)
Video Vortex V Video Vortex V

Accelerated Living – Conference Report

Posted: October 25, 2009 at 5:42 am  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: , , , ,

By Elena Tiis

Sitting in the plush, red chairs at Filmtheater ‘t Hoogt in Utrecht on the 15th of October, I listened in to the lectures of the “Accelerated Living” conference dealing with the ecologies of time & speed, and media technologies’ capacity to impact contemporary time experience.

The kick off was with John Tomlinson’s (UK; Professor of Cultural Sociology and Director of the Institute for Cultural Analysis, Nottingham) lecture on the culture of speed. Taking a broadly historical approach to what speed is, Tomlinson describes it as a condition of immediacy, a most spectacular transaction between time and space, that Marx describes as the “annihilation of space with time” (Grundrisse). Speed in general is under-researched; it fades from view in considerations of modernity, except for Virilio to an extent. Marinetti in “The Futurist Manifesto” talks about omnipresent speed, about capturing in art countercultural appropriations of speed. Interestingly, Tomlinson characterises Le Corbusier as a mainstream version of speed appropriation because the Swiss talked how a “city made for speed is a city made for success”, imagining how the speedways of the Voisin plan would serve businessnessmen as they swished to and from work. This type of speed was the mechanical, physical speed that could putatively transform the whole world.
Contemporary “fast capitalism” is facilitated by ICTs. The integration of media is a key dynamic for understanding of how this type of fast speed works, how it leads to the general increase of intensity and mobility. High speed speculative activity has the capacity to induce crisis.

To characterise this condition of fast capitalism, Thomlinson introduces the concept of “immediacy”, which is instant/has no lapse and proximate/close. It is a quality of cultural experience, containing a new sense of compulsion in life – that of communicational imperative or demand. To this effect, he treats a Blackberry ad as Derrida’s pharmacon – both a poison and a cure – because it is useful for both work and leisure. It also signals the bleeding of work-related emails outside of work hours, in a Marxist sense this is exploitative because these emails come to constitute unpaid labour, but on the other hand it has the advantage of being flexible. Consumers often start facing the burden of service, for instance they are required to buy their own plain tickets, to check in, to selecting seats etc. all of which demands their time.

The second major concept that Tomlinson introduces is “legerdemain” or lightness of hand. In the first sense, it is the body-work of touchpads and keyboards that seems effortless, something like gesturing as opposed to real work. This lightness has the capacity of bringing with it associations of immediate accessibility. In the second sense, it is a world of illusion and delusion, like a type of magic that conceals and deceives; the interface is hiding the complexity of the whole.

The baseline promise of immediacy is that “stuff arrives”, and in the manner of a cargo cult consumer use attains a casualness and even thoughtlessness. Finally, there are political and environmental costs to all of this because these media do not penetrate everywhere and are not accessible by anyone. There is also a sense that there is no broader narrative for current features of speed, unlike during the machine age when a strong narrative of speed operated on the assumption that there are disjunctions between home/abroad, now/later and desire/fulfilment. Now there is no gap to close so there is narrative of closure. To conclude, Tomlinson argues for the importance of ensuring that distinctions do not collapse and that one must keep in view the sight that there are broad, cultural-political reasons for us doing what we do.

Mike Crang’s (UK; Lecturer in Cultural Geography at Durham University) more geographically inflected take on spatial and temporal reach examines how to combine the fragmentary pattern of speeds and scales on different places. One must not forget extension, or the spatial distanciation of multiple temporalities. New technical possibilities shape world spaces where “bits [are] over borders”, where patterns of flows are connecting across physical boundaries. Crang showcases various examples of mapping these new realms, e.g. NYTE who map global conversation space from the perspective of New York. (http://senseable.mit.edu/nyte/)

He also emphasises the usefulness of drawing out Virilio’s dromo-chrono-politics, which is a way of collapsing distinctions that puts forward the question: what type of governance for ICTs?
GAWC’s world city index maps the propinquity of cities based on the shape of their communications and flight connections, showing that even these new forms build on old connectivities, especially those of colonial origins. One can also talk of the production of centrality, for instance when hub airports become gateways like in the case of the Helsinki – of itself it is not a big airport, but by virtue of its good Far East connectivity it can characterise itself as a major gate. Sekula also notes that we must not forget the sea as transport space: most global steamer routes haven’t changed much in fact, and these are mostly how as Tomlinson would put it “stuff arrives” as if by magic.
Crang devotes some time to the space of chronopolitics. This is to mean the way in which cities “shut down” at different times; time, in fact, is populated by different chronopolitical topographies. Crang proposes a typology of spatial and temporal fixings, which also involve social coercion. Flexible space involves trading on the real spaces of poor countries, for instance when New York time is transposed to Hyderabad where employees must use various locational masking techniques –
as well as working at inconvenient times of day – in order to service their employer.

Next, Carmen Leccardi (IT; Professor of Cultural Sociology at the University of Milan-Bicocca) takes a broadly philosophical approach to the restructuring of time. Her key terms are detemporalisation and acceleration society, which she compliments by a consideration of the ways in which “young people” bring into being new notions of time by engaging in anti-globalisation movements and new ways of constructing biographies. Taking her cue from Rosa, Leccardi defines acceleration society according to its three motors – economic (profit driven, neoliberal), cultural (need for experiences) and structural (rhythms of social change). Aside from this, it encompasses three levels: technological, political meaning and the role of social change, what she conceives of as the different meanings of institutions (which could constitute a point of contention because one might want to keep an analytical distance from the meaning of social change and institutional realities). Rosa’s “acceleration society” traces how technological acceleration means that time is growing in scarcity which manifests as a contradiction shaping our lives. Thus, how can we build civic space?

Leccardi spends time on the reconsideration of the idea of the future. Lübbe’s monster term of “Gegenwartsschrumpfung” – the contraction of the present – means that the present is not available for use and one must rely on the future for conceptual package. The building of identities in this interface is challenging, as it is the situation in question and not the over-all life-plan that matters in the end. Again, there might be some rigidity in Leccardi’s notion of these two; she seems to think of them in terms of their reflection in institutions and as their own separate spheres which tend not to interact.

Her guiding term “detemporalisation” means that time loses the character of being a dimension of experience, that the sense of duration is reshaped and operates in relation to the future. The unpredictability of the future is making life-plans irrelevant, therefore the “young people” of today are rather learning to act flexibly and contingently. She enlists two examples of this. First, antiglobalisation movements are resisting the violence of time/space commodification, think in terms of values and re-establish the connection between cause and effect in what is happening. The second feature are biographical constructions, which are concerned with mediating unpredictability and developing responses that neutralise fears of the future. I think that there might be more flexible ways of considering how notions of time are changing than simply from institutionalised to a non-life-plan. Be that as it may, Leccardi rounds up the first session of general introductions to the notions of speed from the perspectives of different academic disciplines.

After lunch, there is a change of moderation as well as an inexplicable change in the order of the talks. Stamatia Portanova speaks before Steve Goodman, who, due to the moderator’s confusion about the timeframes had his lecture cut tantalisingly short. This session begins to showcase talks of more specific inflection – as concerns choreography, music and visual perception.

Stamatia Portanova’s (IT; PhD in Digital Cultures at East London University) talk proposes a redefinition of the digital age as a neo-Baroque age. Her dense, dextrous presentation dealt with Bifo’s manifesto for a postfuturist age (http://eipcp.net/n/1234779255?lid=1234779848). Using futurist notions of time and movement as points of departure, she investigates more corporate conceptions of rhythm and topography. Movement is a sensation not a perception. Sensation is a vibratory wave crossing through bodies. As the body becomes a framer of spatial information in media interface, the liberation of the body is a biophilosophy that turns towards the affect, or embodied aesthetics. Intensity is understood as Deleuzian desire; an energy that is in itself and not for something. Aesthetic style with its technological present is controlling the body possible and creating a different ontology: Deleuzian desire and ICTs interfacing in the creation of energy as information. The digital is an idea, a concept before becoming reality. In this it is attuned to the Baroque in its striving for dissection, for a microscopic notion particles and the technological idea of the cut. Portanova’s contention is that we can find an openness in technology that is not only dependent on the imitation of life. Chronological and metric notions of time can allow us to imagine an infinite succession of time that is alive.

Steve Goodman’s (UK; teaches Sonic Cultures at East London University) talk was badly interrupted, so the promised exposition of the concept of speed tribes and the development of music cultures did not manifest. Even so, his brief talk was beautifully evocative of the forthcoming book “Sonic Warfare” (2009). Like Portanova, he begins by departing from Bifo’s provocation; how is it possible that futurism could become passé? He proposes a consideration sonic ecology, the competing corporate and grassroots initiatives in contemporary sonic culture. By contrasting futurism with afrofuturism, he is tracing the things that could be retained of futurism. Afrofuturism presents more complex ideas of speed than futurism’s god of speed. The sonic warfare concept is evoking the art of war in the art of noise. Afrofuturism is a colonised culture’s way of striking back through sound. As expounded by Kodwo Eshun in his “More Brilliant Than The Sun” (1997), it is a nexus of black musical expression, the city and the cybernetic in electronic music. Eshun’s concept of the future rhythm machine evokes the sensual mathematics of music as non-conscious counting. Afrofuturism is rewiring alienated experience through urban machine musics, presenting a landscape that extends into possibility space. Simon Reynolds’ description of the dystopic metropolis of warrior clans and robber corporations creating a city as a warzone and ecologies of dread in the 90s wanted to examine the intersection of underdevelopment, technology and race in the city, thus attains a different type of futurity. In contrast to Marinetti’s and Russolo’s unilinear notion of history with its white metallicist Übermensch, Eshun’s afrofuturism is polyrhythmnic, bred from cyclical discontinuity, aligning the future paradoxically. In the intersection of roots and futurism, memories are those of the future – the future scifi alien abduction actually happened in the past when black people were subjected to slavery! According to this, the sonic avant-garde of high modernism were actually afraid of rhythm. At this point, Goodman is forces to “skip about 20 pages” and concludes that in view of corporate co-option of musics, afrofuturism is not necessarily scifi but has proliferated as something that – aside from selling record – has the capability of affectively mobilise people.

Dirk de Bruyn’s (NL/AU; Senior Lecturer in Animation and Digital Culture at Deakin University, Melbourne) lecture dealt with the “after-image as a traumatic event” by using Prensky’s distinction between digital natives and digital immigrants as a way of tracing out inherencies in the way that people tend to interact with the medium and Brewin’s notions of VAM (verbally accessible memory) which deals with the context and SAM (situationally accessible memory) which deals with perception. These always intermix; the categories are not useful so rigidly. Flusser’s notion that “we all are immigrants now” repositions the migrant experience as that of globalisation itself. This has impact on our relation to technical literacy: we remain illiterate if not engaging in criticism of technical images. The issue is about how to critique technologically mediated images on their own terms, by the realignment of senses as in the case of the perceptual apparatus adjusting and sometimes fooling the viewer.

The final session could be said to attain to a type of microspecificity, first in relation to maps in video games such as Civilisation and Charlie Gere’s talk which managed not to consider nothing related to digital media, or the 21st century for that matter. This was followed by a presentation of two artworks by two British artists operating in the ambiguous interface between visual art and online media.

Sybille Lammes (NL; Assistant Professor of Media and Culture Studies at Utrecht University) spoke of gameplay and digital ludic cartographies. In particular, she explored the changeable status of minimaps in gameplay with recourse to De Certeau’s and Latour’s concepts. Is there something at stake in what games do to analogue maps? De Certeau’s notion of spatial stories – of touring – contrasts with the rigidity of mapping especially after the Renaissance period. In the middle age, the two senses were fuse: a map would show a place as well as an “experience” or a perception of it. Such touring traces are performative iterations. In games, minimaps are looked at and altered by the player as a way of exploring vast spaces. Further, Latour’s “immutable mobiles” concept provides a way of describing the image as technology: it can be moved around but still depends on inscription. The player is a mediator, mutating the map by tactically interacting with space but also constantly erasing earlier versions, or inscriptions.

Charlier Gere (UK; teaches New Media Research at the Institute for Cultural Research, Lancaster University), for the whole of his lecture on ecology and messianic time, did not address much of anything to do with new media. In stead, his concern was to trace out Ruskin’s complex relationship with environmental issues to the point of the latter’s positive theophany of nature. In his soi-disant “vicar mode”, Gere was continuously on the verge of getting utterly distracted by long quotes from Ruskin peppered by autobiographical jabs at the author’s many odditities and failings. This domain-bridging presentation dealt with an eschatological mode of experiencing nature, through Ruskin’s description of the “messianic/apocalyptic” storm cloud of the 19th century. Via references to Derrida’s spectrality, or the reproducible virtuality of technology, to Agamben’s political ecology of messianic time in reference to Pauline notions of it, he ends up with images of the mushroom cloud over Hiroshima (the flash of the bomb took “photos”) to Tsernobyl’s radioactive fallout, arguing that invisible radiation is the storm cloud of the 20th century; its messianic narrative. At the end of this complex, flighty and quoty exposition I was left wondering where it is that we are then at the beginning of the 21st century – there are still about 90 years to think up/bring about the apocalyptic storm cloud of digital media and environmental depletion.

To conclude the day, artists Jon Thomson and Alison Craighead (UK) showcased two pieces of their work which deal with data by attempting to represent its two facets: the procuring information and the contrast between live and dead data. The exploration of the materiality of their material is at the crux of their endeavours.

* Beacon takes a live stream from search engines, functioning as a “useless clock”, portrait and a landscape whilst also managing to reveal a particular type of intimacy in people dealing with a search engine.

* A Short Film About War (part of Desktop Documentaries) is a collation of Flickr images and log texts accompanied by blog pieces spoken out loud. The film scrutinises the browsing experience and mediatic war through the net (web 2.0), especially by the use of Collective Commons images. The act of editorial becomes a sort of surrogate browsing experience for this collation of multiple strands of images and stories of war.

Video Vortex V in Brussels 20-21 Nov, program online

Posted: October 11, 2009 at 11:58 am  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: , , ,

Video Vortex V: The Moving Image Online
Location: Atomium, Brussels
20-21 November 2009

Video Vortex V is organized by Cimatics festival 2009 in cooperation with the Institute of Network Cultures in Amsterdam and supported by KASK (Faculty of Fine Arts, University College Ghent) and the Center Leo Apostel (CLEA).

On November 20-21 2009, Cimatics festival is hosting the 5th Video Vortex conference. Two years after its first edition, Video Vortex returns to Brussels, this time hosted in one of the great icons of mid 20th century modern architecture: the Atomium.

The past two years, the conference series - which focuses on the status and potential of the moving image on the Internet - has visited Amsterdam, Ankara and Split, growing out into an organised network of organisations and individuals. Time for an interim report, perhaps. We asked some participants of the first Video Vortex editions and publication, as well as new ones, to reflect on recent developments in online video culture.

Over the past years the place of the moving image on the Internet has become increasingly prominent. With a wide range of technologies and web applications within anyone’s reach, the potential of video as a personal means of expression has reached a totally new dimension. How is this potential being used? How do artists and other political and social actors react to the popularity of YouTube and other ‘user-generated-content’ websites? What does YouTube tell us about the state of contemporary visual culture? And how can the participation culture of video-sharing and vlogging reach some degree of autonomy and diversity, escaping the laws of the mass media and the strong grip of media conglomerates?

More info:
Conference Programme
Practical information (Location, tickets)
About (about VV, about Cimatics)

Video Vortex Split Program is Online

Posted: April 14, 2009 at 3:44 pm  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: , ,

On 22-23 May, 2009 the fourth edition of Video Vortex will take place in Split, Croatia. The Department of Film and Video at the Academy of Arts University of Split and Platforma 9.81 will organize the event, in collaboration with the Institute of Network Cultures in Amsterdam. After previous events on online video and responses to YouTube in Brussels, Amsterdam and Ankara, this event will focus on the moving image on the Web.

The program is available here. The event opens on Thursday evening, with a lecture, screenings, the opening of the Video Vortex exhibition and a performance by artisty Emile Zile. The conference takes place on Friday and Saturday, and the closing party is on Saturday night.


HvA Education Conference 2009

Posted: April 8, 2009 at 5:44 pm  |  By: margreet  |  Tags: , , ,

By Urte Jurgaityte

On the 2nd of April, 2009, The Amsterdam University of Applied Science (HvA) organized the 5th HvA Education Conference at the Beurs van Berlage, Amsterdam. The conference, with the theme of 'The Learning Community,' started with an informal lunch with about 800 participants. Most of the attendees were HvA employees, (lecturers, staff and management), as well as the research depts. ('lectoraten') such as the Institute of Network Cultures, and labs like MediaLAB Amsterdam. The opening speech by Dymph van den Boom, rector magnificus of the HvA, was followed by the two interesting keynote speakers Trude Maas and René Jansen, who addressed the importance of community building and networking.

In the afternoon, everybody split into small groups to have roundtable discussions about a variety of important topics related to education and research. The roundtables were arranged according to 8 main themes: Learning Community, ICT and Education, Learning the Big City, Young Teachers / Professionalizing, Excellency / Masters, Divergent Perspectives, Study Success, and Environment Awareness.
The Institute of Network Cultures led a discussion about the use and possible value of social networks within higher education, with the title 'Is your EduHyves LinkedIn yet?.' At this roundtable, moderated by Geert Lovink and Paul den Hertog, social networks were discussed from an educational and policy perspective. What could a HvA fabecook be? And should it be accessible for both students and teaching staff? Who is it for? And what are the pitfalls of yet another social networking platform? The outcomes were of great value for the further developments of the HvA social networking tool that Paul den Hertog is designing.
Another roundtable in the 'Learning Community' theme was initiated by three students from the MediaLAB Amsterdam. Daphne Gautier, Rochus Meijer and me were responsible for a discussion about Open Courseware. We did a short introduction about Open Course Ware at MIT and TU Delft and introduced IAM Open Courseware project. We debated whether the HvA is ready for an open culture in which knowledge sharing could facilitate education, and examined the possibilities of Open Course Ware at HvA.

For more information about the project IAM Open Courseware, see:

Reminder: Video Vortex call closes on 5 Feb 09

Posted: February 3, 2009 at 4:35 pm  |  By: sabine  |  Tags: ,

This is a quick reminder that the call for contributions for Video Vortex Split closes on February 5, 2009. The call is pasted below and available online at www.networkcultures.org/videovortex.

On 22-23 May, 2009 the fourth edition of Video Vortex will take place in Split, Croatia. The Department of Film and Video at the Academy of Arts University of Split and Platforma 9.81 will organize the event, in collaboration with the Institute of Network Cultures in Amsterdam. After previous events on online video and responses to YouTube in Brussels, Amsterdam and Ankara, this event will focus on the moving image on the Web.

We invite contributions for the following themes:
Telepresence and Web Aesthetics
Video meets Web aesthetics: how is the phenomenon of ‘telepresence’ incorporated in various art forms, such as music, theater, visual arts, literature and cinema? What are underlying aesthetics and what are the specific interface contexts?

Social Cinema
Has cinema found its way onto the Web? Did it change the essential features of cinema? What are the new possibilities of collaborative production? Does the future of film museums and cinematheques lie in online cinematic databases?

Architecture and Moving Image
Online video offers an immense database of moving images, which could be displayed in urban public space. What are the existing cinematographic visions of the future of the moving image in public space? (In films such as Blade Runner, Minority Report, Children of Men, etc.) Which visions can be directly implemented, and which will remain film scenography?

Video Sharing
What are the standards and alternatives for sharing, licensing and hosting moving images on the Web? This theme explores issues around the distribution, licensing, collaborative production, and video hosting.

Technology and politics of the moving image
What is the future of visual browsers? How does moving image production relate to cultural, technological and political dominance? Open standards and codex politics. Surveillance issues.

Literature and video online narrative
Narrative strategies on the Web. From screenplay writing with hypertext, the broadcasted self and narrative avatars to collective narrative processes leading to Web literature, tag based video narrativity, public journalism and performative real-time literature.

Please send in a 500-word abstract and a short bio to Dan Oki (danoki [at] xs4all.nl) before February 5, 2009.

Besides the conference, Video Vortex Split includes five cinema events:
1) upload cinema 2) mobile phone cinema 3) social cinema 4) cinematic data base 5) performative cinema

Stay informed and discuss topics around online video! Subscribe to the video vortex discussion list.