Tag Archives: internet

The One With The Field Trip To Sonoport

Having the opportunity to go to Sonoport’s office is an eye opener! I am confuse whether to call it a studio or an office. It could be a studio as that is where they make their ‘sound’ happen, but it is also an office as it has a very formal arrangement.

Before the trip, I remember I was imagining how the office will look like. I picture a very modern and creative office as they are a creative company that works with sound. However, it turns out to be an disappointment. The office looks really boring and the walls are really plain. The table arrangement were pretty predictable and I just did sense any creative vibe at all when I was there the whole time actually. But its all good homie, as long as you guys do a good job and everyone’s happy, then that’s all that matters.


It was an insightful talk and introduction by the founder of Sonoport, Mr. Fredrik Brostrom.  It is not easy to set up a business and approaching people to believe in you actually. Furthermore it is harder if no one wants to try the services that you provided, in this case, sound on an interaction web application. However, getting the capital is not that hard in Singapore as it turns out. We all know that Singapore wants to attract foreign investors  to set up an office here. So spending millions on giving out grants to new established start ups is the only way. But anyway, Sonoport sounds and look interesting but sadly they don’t have a wide range of clients and portfolios, YET. So i am excited to see the future of web application since companies like Sonoport is trying to make that difference. Maybe Sonoport could be the next Facebook in terms of sound application in the near Future. IMG_7951

As Permagnus wants us to come up with questions, I have came up with 2 in my previous post. But right after I leave the office and on my way home, I have more questions about Sonoport that I wished I have asked them. The questions changed before and after the trip actually.

1. What is the future of sound in web application? Say about 10 years, will sound make an impact on the internet as much as visuals do.?

2. Is Sonoport a multiple design studio? They have another office in the UK as they mentioned.

3. Why does Sonoport restrict their business to just web base kind of audio? In my head, I was thinking there are brands out there that has a signature sound effect for example yahoo has that signature music that shouts ‘YAHOOOOOOO’. Why didn’t sonoport create sound for different companies and brands?

4. It makes me question if Sound really matters in an interaction? How percentage is the sound plays an important role than the main touch interaction itself?IMG_7953 copy

On our way back to the bus, I saw 2 black cats roaming the carpark, creating attention and craving a pat or two by the larger human being. It makes me wonder if Sonoport should adopt this 2 cats or not.

Life Sharing by Eva & Franco Mattes

Can you imagine sharing your own personal computer to a stranger? You will definitely be uncomfortable because there are sensitive information in your computer, plus all your secret is there in your history page!

But that was what exactly Eva and Franco Mattes did in Life Sharing. They open up their computer to the whole world. They made each and every file from their computer accessible to anyone at anytime! From emails, to bank statements, to photos, even softwares they used were all no longer private. I mention no longer private because one’s personal computer is like a private object because it sometimes contain your dirty laundry, but in Life Sharing, their private life becomes a public art. work-lifesharing-screenshot-01-700x600

Like the title suggests, this work focussing on the idea of sharing. Anybody can search and copy freely the files even the system as well. This work was dated 2000-2003, there wasn’t any social network, but in this way, Eva and Franco was able to share things to the world. The picture below is the screenshot of the email. Obviously, this was a very risky move as anybody could make one bad move and sabotage the emails and there could be a possibly a leak of secret information or virus to the email’s recipients. work-lifesharing-screenshot-03-700x600

In January 2001 we started sharing our personal computer through our website. Everything was visible: texts, photos, music, videos, software, operating system, bank statements and even our private email. People could take anything they wanted, including the system itself, since we were using only free software. It was not a normal website, you were entering the computer in our apartment, seeing everything live. It was a sort of endurance performance that lasted 3 years, 24/7.

-Eva & Franco Mattes

Being able to see everything from their screen live from my computer is an act of intrusion of privacy but that’s the whole point of this work. It pushes boundaries and question the meaning of open source and what it means to have boundaries between private and public. But more on that later.

Screenshots and software experiments:work-lifesharing-screenshot-08-700x583




work-lifesharing-screenshot-06-700x583 work-lifesharing-screenshot-05-1024x853 work-lifesharing-screenshot-04-700x583

While CCTV surveillance is commonly covert and broadly concerned with policing, the webcam is characterised by a generally opposite impulse toward openness, sharing, and freedom of expression.

-Webcams or the Virtual Performance of Real Life

While the readings is solely focus on the idea of the Webcam, I find it relevant as well in this work. As webcams shows a particular scene of a place or location, it has the same effect as looking at Eva & Franco Mattes’s computer screen. Both have the effect of voyuerism however the aspect of ‘performance’ in Life Sharing is not evident compare to webcams.

Another interesting aspect of Life Sharing is that they extend the idea of exposing themselves through the internet by sharing their location through a GPS transmitter, so everyone knows where they are at any given time. I think this idea of sharing their exact location is actually very interesting given the time this work was done. Sharing one’s location could be dangerous if you have an assassin on you but for parents, they are able to know where their children is, for safety concerns. But I guess for Eva & Franco, they want to emphasise the idea of full exposure and that they have nothing to hide.



This sharing of location reminds me of the current social network application such as Facebook and Foursquare where we can actually share our location to the masses. Even instagram, you can tag the location. So I guess the idea of sharing location wasn’t something new. Back then where all the social network website wasn’t there, Eva and Franco uses the website like a social network where they are able to share their location to the public.lifesharing-vopos-amsterdam

They also keep track of the traffic that come through their website. They were so obsessed with keeping track that they woke up in the middle of night to checking how many people were viewing Life Sharing. Having a viewer is important as it is proof that people are actually interested in looking at a stranger’s computer screen and maybe get a free file or two. It helps the work to be successful in terms of its purpose as well.

lifesharing-logs-ReqReferSiteHist-2000 lifesharing-logs-ReqFiletype-2000 lifesharing-logs-ReqDaily-2000 lifesharing-logs-ReqCountry-2000

In Summary, Life Sharing is a risk that the artist is willing to take to push the boundaries of the idea of internet privacy. By being vulnerable through sharing everything on the computer to the masses, Eva & Franco question the meaning of sharing. As Life is all about sharing and giving back to society, eva and franco have done probably a good job in that.

and Oh, should I add , that being vulnerable technologically is more dangerous than being vulnerable physically? Haha I feel so because there are many secrets one keep in the computer. This reminds me of Marina Abramovich’s Rhythm 0 where she leave the power to the hands of the people, similarly, in Life Sharing, Eva and Franco are leaving the responsibility to the mouse of the people. Okay, I am done.

Singing My Way Home

I was walking home after buying some food at a nearby food stall.
There were beautiful lights being put up along the trees, so I decided to broadcast it to the whole world! How cliche is that! But that’s what happened! And it reminds me of Coldplay’s song Fix You, where the lyrics goes like ‘lights will guide you home’. So watch the video to listen to me singing.


I was surprised that there were at least 3 people were watching me! I am not going to lie, I’ve been finding good videos to use for this assignment and each time I broadcast all my previous videos, it does not have any viewer. But today, there were at least 3! Total viewers was 6 according to the statistic! This actually tells something about the internet, that it is random. I mean there are definite ways/methods to get viewers but sometimes, luck plays a part. Maybe during the time I was broadcasting, there were people just scrolling through Asia and happen to see me.



IMG_4304 IMG_4305

Finding a good reason to broadcast to the world is actually harder than it seems. Finding a narrative and making people to keep watching your broadcast is not something easy. How do directors and actors make one keep still and watch the movie till the end is actually not rocket science but there are some science involve. With periscope, anybody can just start and stop watching other people’s broadcast easily, its like having a power to look at scenes from all over the world but not the power to control what scenes though.

IMG_4306 IMG_4308

The power and responsibility to broadcast something to the internet is huge. Similar to how the Videofreex broadcast their material to the television, it is such a powerful way to get things across to the masses.


Jodi derived from combining two of its members name,  Joan Heemskerk & Dirk Paesmans.

In a nutshell, jodi.org is a website. But in actuality, it’s more than just a website. Here, you guys got to check it out! Do not worry if you feel like your browser is getting out of control, it is art! Glitch Art!

Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 10.43.03 am

Jodi.org  starts on a black background with green gibberish computer language words written on the top. This certainly, invites people to click on it and to me, that is where the adventure of the unknown world of the world wide web begin. Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 10.43.41 am

 “We explore the computer from inside, and mirror this on the net. When a viewer looks at our work, we are inside his computer.


A little background about the artist. They started out by modifying old video games and deconstruct the whole world and putting it in a different layers and ways. They were creating glitch art before the genre even have a name yet. Their intent was to find the accidental disturbances of the machine and its language: to subvert the expectations. I like the statement they make I shared above. Sometimes, we are too engross on what’s happening on our computer screen that we forgot that the computer do have a brain and an inside. Like human being, our skin is what being shown above, but deep inside our organs, are intricate veins and vessels that is very important to make us live normal lives. Similarly, the computer share the same sentiment as us.Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 10.43.15 am

So by showing what is on the inside of the computer, as quoted as Jodi, and present it as a work of art on the net, this work explores the medium of the internet and question the audience whether are we aware on what is going on behind all the beautiful layout of Facebook and Twitter. Matter of fact, these ‘codes’ are actually beautiful. That is what Jodi.org wishes to show us.Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 10.43.28 am

By introducing glitch aesthetics onto the internet as a medium, they perceived the net as the theatrical space where performance and glitch can be appreciate and viewed on a large scale. If the net is Madison Square Garden, then the codes are the main event. Having these codes as visual experience rather than its functional qualities, this pushes the boundary of the medium when this was introduce to the world in 1995, which was still early age of the Internet. Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 10.43.54 am

Reading Rosa Menkman’s Glitch Moment(um) actually helps me to understand the definition of glitch art. She actually break down glitch into different parts and sets the tone of how glitch art can also be used as a message technically, socially and metaphorically.

“…theorists need to be more clear about the relationship between technical and metaphorical or cultural dimensions of glitch culture. Focusing on the glitch within this broader perspective makes it possible to think through some of the more interesting political and social uses of the glitch within the field of digital art.”

Menkman, R. (2011) “Glitch Moment(um),” Institute of Network CulturesScreen Shot 2015-09-14 at 11.41.53 am

As Rosa Menkman mention, Glitch Art can be used more than just aesthetically but also to send a message metaphorically. This reminds me of Jon Cates’s Bold3RRR, where he uses his desktop screen as glitch art to talk about the digital window on how we live our lives using the internet. The fact that Rosa Menkman was introduce to Glitch Art and inspired by Jodi.org was amazing and it shows that Jodi was an originator of this genre called Glitch Art. Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 11.42.03 am

Looking back at Jodi.org, it does not necessarily break the order of how one uses the internet and more specifically, how one surf a website. We can still press buttons and there are cursors that lead us to the next follow glitch pages. With each subsequent page, the glitch gets more daring and the results is really beautiful.  It does however, break the flow of information when one expect to gain information when surfing the net.Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 11.42.16 am

I took videos during my trip in Vancouver, edit it on my phone, uploaded on Instagram and now it’s on the net for everyone in the world to see. But back in the 70s, it was another different ball game.

Videofreex including Parry Teasdale and David Cort, fourth and fifth from left, Bart Friedman, third from right, and Skip Blumberg, second from right, gathered in their Catskills town in 1973. Courtesy of Videofreex

Videofreex including Parry Teasdale and David Cort, fourth and fifth from left, Bart Friedman, third from right, and Skip Blumberg, second from right, gathered in their Catskills town in 1973.
Courtesy of Videofreex

Reading up on Videofreex’s history online, I realise their story is worth mentioning and actually worth doing a documentary about. Actually, there’s already a documentary about the Videofreex! Here’s the link if you want to know more about it! And here’s a review for the documentary by The Hollywood Reporter.
Anyway, let’s start knowing who are the Videofreex by watching the documentary titled ‘Here Comes The Videofreex’ Trailer!

To understand Lanesville TV, I feel that we need to look back briefly at their history. After CBS hire them to do a show on counterculture, they went on to video demonstrations and even interviews Fred Hampton of the Black Panthers! They went the opposite direction of commercial television and were ahead of their time and thats what make CBS reject the Videofreex. That is where they decided to start afresh by moving upstate into Lanesville, NY. Lanesville TV was born.

From left, Videofreex David Cort, Bart Friedman and Parry Teasdale filmed kids' programs and daily goings-on in 1973 at their Maple Tree Farm in Lanesville, N.Y. John Dominis/Courtesy of Videofreex

From left, Videofreex David Cort, Bart Friedman and Parry Teasdale filmed kids’ programs and daily goings-on in 1973 at their Maple Tree Farm in Lanesville, N.Y.
John Dominis/Courtesy of Videofreex

In a nutshell, Lanesville TV is believed to be the country’s first pirate television station. Using a transmitter, they were able to show videos they make to the public. Videofreex’s Bart Friedman remembers it as basically public access TV. This is huge actually! They have the power and technology to actually show things to the public! With huge responsibility, they did not disappoint.

“We got the kids to participate in the kids’ programs, we covered stocking of the stream, the firehouse, local residents, car accidents, gun club dinners, things like that,”

Bart Friedman (Videofreex).

Here’s a 6 minute sampler of Lanesville TV.

I found a video on youtube, showing full clips of their tv show.

Press Watch On Youtube! I particularly want to point out that they even use basic effect to enhance the viewing pleasure for the kids show, which I thought was pretty amazing in the 70s!

screenshot of Lanesville TV episodes.

screenshot of Lanesville TV episodes.

It would be amazing if the Videofreex were still active today and they will definitely participate in the NetArtizens Project. Videofreex’s vision for the world to see their own show was very forward looking but unfortunately, the internet wasn’t born yet during their time. I feel that given their restricted access to share their work, they did a pretty good job in making Lanesville TV happen. Imagine what Videofreex can do now with the Internet!

Skip Blumberg, Mary Curtis Ratcliff, Parry Teasdale, David Cort, Carol Vontobel, Davidson Gigliotti, Ann Woodward and Bart Friedman We’re All Videofreex: Changing Media & Social Change from Portapak to Smartphone Friday, April 5 2013

Skip Blumberg, Mary Curtis Ratcliff, Parry Teasdale, David Cort, Carol Vontobel, Davidson Gigliotti, Ann Woodward and Bart Friedman
We’re All Videofreex: Changing Media & Social Change from Portapak to Smartphone Friday, April 5 2013

I agree that the power of video is very much powerful. It doesn’t matter if its a short film, video art, internet tv or even videos on youtubes. With the help of the internet, videos are actually more powerful as they are able to reach the masses. Looking at Videofreex’s history and their project using videos, I am able to see that life doesn’t always have to be about commercialise like the NBC, CBS or ABC. It’s about pushing boundaries of what technology can do for us artists.

We strongly feel that the media arts have not fully embraced this potentiality, despite the progressive nature of the field.

-Catlow, R., Garrett M., Packer R., “The NetArtizens Project,” (2015)

There are currently full time bloggers out there who uses videos to actually share their life with their viewers/subscribers. They practically walk around town with their hands holding their digital cameras and talking to themselves. They will then upload it onto youtube and this make take a while before it reaches to their fans.

This is where the NetArtizens.tv might help them or even us. By doing real time ‘vlogging’ (video blogging), the interaction between the audience and the blogger will be an instant and using the internet as an engine to power up people’s stalking mode. Imagine, me, Kamarul, wearing a google glass, with a camera facing in front, walking and doing my normal routine day, and anyone is able to see what I see just by going to a website. Now that’s technology.