Friday, March 14, 2008

Recycle your equipment!

The power of digital technology fundamentally transforms our lives. Materiality is being technically extended. The digital offers another variety of artifacts that impact remembrance. While expanding our experience, some things also get lost along the path to de-materialization.

For the contextual area of my general exams I research on the attachments to physical, digital and virtual objects. I explore the psychological trade-off between what we call virtual and tangible “attachments”: I focus on people’s attachments to things, and through things, their relations to people (virtual and digital).

I investigate the journey of the physical and digital object being appropriated, collected, hacked, transformed, possessed and shared on virtual environments and communities. I review the hacker’ skills in appropriating objects by transforming it: the Nintendo Wii becomes an umbrella with a map to provide real time directions while on the walk. The Roomba becomes a robotic dog, Guitar Heroe becomes Guitaraoke Revolution a learning system!

A hacked Roomba by Hacking Roomba dot com

With the industrial revolution we lost our ability to intervene on the design of our objects. Even if the old paradigm of mass production has been thrown away, dixit Pine, I believe that Mass Customization only allows few parameters in a product to be customized. There is no appropriation of the object as in the artisan-customer relationship. That is what came to mind while I was repairing my old mac, I had so much fun opening the machine, looking for tutorial and guides, ordering missing parts just to give a life to this machine.

A bit of nostalgia maybe, but recycling and reusing laptop parts, computer parts, and any objects in general would not only be good for the environment but also recreate this sense of ownership through creative use and appropriation. That is why I am so fascinated by hackers, custom car designers and also collectors. Everything could be recycled, reused, repaired, reinvented and investigated!

Posted by Cati Vaucelle @ Architectradure
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1 comment:

Teratologist said...

A kind of preview...

J'etais sur que c'etait un bon theme mais je le suis encore plus apres avoir lu ce post.