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<nettime> Making Sense of ISEA2008 (Without Any Decent Statistics).
marc garrett on Mon, 11 Aug 2008 13:53:37 +0200 (CEST)


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<nettime> Making Sense of ISEA2008 (Without Any Decent Statistics).


Making Sense of ISEA2008 (Without Any Decent Statistics).

Review of this year's ISEA2008 by Brogan Bunt. Held in Singapore from 25 
July - 3 August, hosted in Asia for the second time in its history. An 
international symposium on Electronic Art, for the critical discussion 
and showcase of creative productions applying new technologies in 
interactive and digital media.

"In his weirdly scheduled ISEA2008 lecture - delivered the day after the 
closing night party - Lev Manovich argued that we have shifted from a 
state of new media to one of 'more' media. There is simply so much media 
these days (the product of new technologies and social interactive 
forms) that it is humanly impossible to gain an overall perspective. Our 
only viable option is to draw upon the quantitative methods that have 
driven contemporary science and business. We must data-mine culture in 
order to develop new methods of visualization that have the potential to 
represent cultural patterns indiscernible to the naked critical eye and 
provide a necessary interface to the universe of specific cultural 
objects. Manovich dubs this new critical and expressive field, 'cultural 
analytics'. While I am suspicious that significant aspects of culture 
are so easily amenable to discrete quantitative representation, 
Manovich's lecture, delivered to a packed audience, resonated very much 
with my experience of ISEA2008. With its 800 delegates, five concurrent 
streams, juried exhibition and huge range of associated panels, 
seminars, workshops and exhibitions, ISEA2008 was anything but 
digestible. As Andreas Broeckmann suggested at the ISEA board meeting, 
every participant is likely to have had a substantially different 
experience of the event depending upon their particular path through it. 
A stronger and more clearly integrated keynote program may have helped, 
but there are clear issues of scale that no manner of organization can 
solve. Lacking the means to effectively data-mine the event, all I can 
offer here is a sample of issues that emerged for me."

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http://www.furtherfield.org/displayreview.php?review_id=310

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