Friday, October 19, 2007

It's so easy...

if you listen to John Maeda's Laws of Simplicity.

Law 1: Reduce
The simplest way to achieve simplicity is through thoughtful reduction.
Law 2: Organize
Organization makes a system of many appear fewer.
Law 3: Time
Savings in Time feel like simplicity.
Law 4: Learn
Knowledge makes everything simpler.
Law 5: Differences
Simplicity and Complexity need each other.
Law 6: Context
What lies in the periphery if not the peripheral.
Law 7: Emotion
More emotions are better than words.
Law 8: Trust
In simplicity we trust.
Law 9: Failure
Some things can never be made simple.
Law 10: THE ONE
Simplicity is about subtracting the obvious and adding the meaningful.

John Maeda is one of my heros. Also, Benjamin Bratton might slip in to that category. I sat in on his object as media class tonight and will be attending the rest. In the class, he said one of the most poignant statements of advice I have heard in a while.

Max the Unlikely and Max the Inevitable.

how poetic.

I would love to add this to my rules to live and work by, which I need to publish on this blog any way.

lade os arbejde sammen!

Bjork Christensen and myself have teamed up to tackle the Just Jerusalem Competition. We have started a new blog as part of tracking the process and possibly becoming part of the design propaganda on its own. Please check it out!


Why Bjork and I decided to work together:
We both look pretty in photo booths, though he out pretties me.
But for better and actual reasons, we were both converging at a transparent virtual wall. My transparent virtual wall was the glory holes. For him, it is the connection for the digital and physical spaces connected opening up a transparent wall.

I will probably posting more to that than this blog. I will still be injecting this one with the topics and projects that are involved with it.

Keep reading!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

kingdom come!

"From the beginning of our republic," Elggren said, "we had it in our minds that everyone who is dead is automatically a citizen of Elgaland-Vargaland. And if any of them didn't want to be, they could file a complaint, and we would remove them from the list."

Welcome to Elgaland-Vargaland!

Never heard of it before?It's been around since 14th of March 199. Where is it? It's the area of all the borders between countries. The founders Leif Elggren and CM von Hausswolff are not by any means a Louis and Clark. They are two Swedish Artist's collecting the empty space, the contested space if you will. Not only do they hold claim to the No Man's Land or Border Crossings, they occupy digital and civic space. They define civic space as psychic, self contained and appear in every citizen's mind by will or chance.

The Hypnagogue State, the border area between waking and sleeping, is dreamspace where the citizen’s consciousness is still in operation and where the physical sensation of limitlessness occurs. One enters this area when they declare its existence as part of the kingdom.

The Escapistic Territory functions in the same way as the Hypnagogue State, but the citizen is awake. I would say this is almost like a waiting room, its where one dwells when wanting to go some where else. It's a daydreamscape of personal projection, the space you inhabit while you are there in a room but not there mentally. Other mental and civil territories could also be annexed such as the borderline zones of mental diseases, near death experiences, hypnosis and mesmerism, telekinetics, telepathy, suggestions, strokes, delirium, various influences of drugs (such as peyote, LSD, ecstasy, cannabis, thinner, ether, alcohol etc), speaking in tongues, religious ecstasy, artistic inspiration and expiration, possession by spirit, good or evil, dusk and dawn, terror, love, orgasm, interference, the state of contradiction or hesitation, hard disc crashes, computer viruses, frequencies, fission or the fusion of particles.

The Digital Room is a digitally programmed territory that is a borderless space; an existing
global meeting place.

So does the wall in Jerusalem count? Are we just adding more real estate to this new kingdom?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

the GOOD life

In the most recent issue of GOOD magazine, there was an article by Sam Slovick on Skid Row.

One poignant quote is :

“I been in the cut down here since I was strung-out kid,” says Menjivar. “These people, I know most of them by name by now. Down here are people doing things I still can’t believe, even though I see it every day. They’re living like animals, right by all the million-dollar lofts and all the yuppies practically running them over in their Beemers and Benzes. It’s America. That’s how we do it. At lease they’re not dumping people here as much anymore...You know, there’s a lot less people down here than there used to be. That’s a fact. What I would like to know is … exactly where the fuck did they all go? Where’d they bury the bodies?””—William Menjivar

Good question. Are "they" already making plastic out of homeless plasma? or are people just getting off the streets?

The article proceeds in saying how the homeless of Skid Row are migrating. In talking to Jeanette Rowe, who runs the Emergency Response Team for Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, the location of the homelessness shift is revealed.

“The first call we got was from Little Tokyo, saying there were homeless encampments starting there,” she says. “It’s heading out to the South L.A. area and east towards Boyle Heights. We’ve also been finding families living in cars."
People are living in and out of welfare hotels next to sex offenders to move to temporary housing and then to a concoction called permanent affordable housing.

What is the problem? Housing! Homes! Is that what is missing just daily storage for the body?

Friday, October 12, 2007

In process...

On a side note of combinations...

Check out Stelarc, he's a zombi and cyborg in one. His ideas lead to a WHOLE NEW BALL GAME. What if you could make a wall out of ears? or Biologic parts still living?

I am really excited.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Where to go from here?

Here are the diagrams that I presented Oct 5th for a pin up that we had. Each of these four express the individual elements' typology: Homeless: This profiling system is the one from Homeless In Los Angeles:

Glory Holes: Looking at the possibilities for points of connection. Also the hole itself:

Bread Tabs- Looking at the body and the shape of each type, here, the most commonly found:

Fruit: Connecting through shared nutrients, the fruits can then be located in neighborhoods near the observer. The hopes for this is ultimately a website incorporating/collaborating with Fallen Fruit:

And how do these four systems/profiles converge?

element//disconnected from ///reabsorbed though

persons//society///plasma====>can be turned in to plastic for human transplant parts
Glory Holes=
organ//body///the device is now a point of connection, the wall is no longer a point of alienation
breadtab//function of closure///could be made by Polylimonene Carbonate, a plastic from orange rinds, or could be implanted with tracking devices like PITtags
fruit//industrial agriculture///neighborhood grown or integration and the awareness of these free floating fruit and excess garden vegetables, food for homeless persons

So where too now...
I am looking at how to communicate these points of intersection, looking specifically at film but also potentially max/msp/jitter.
Yet I really want to start to focus on the Jerusalem competition, pulling mainly from the glory holes. Looking for the wall that gives anonymity yet connection. What does a wall do normally? put ones in or out of exile. Also, just to throw this around, popularity as a form of a wall or exile.

What are the desires of exile?....

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Home, Homeless on the Range...

As you can see, California has the most population of homeless people. This study measures the amount of homeless persons in the city. California has 170,270 homeless people, the most in the country.

Not only does LA Bus people downtown to fake addresses after they are released from hospitals and prisons, but it is rumored that the eastern state cities ship their homeless here also.

To add to it in August of this year:

Making good on a promise to trim the state budget, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger eliminated a $55-million program Friday that advocates say has helped thousands of mentally ill homeless people break the costly cycle of hospitalization, jails and street life.

What if there was a way to provide portable housing for people who wanted it in some fairly economical fashion. Instead of just giving money to the centers how about giving people a way to earn "attachable housing" or parasitic pods that attach to the existing urban environment. Plug and play. Nomad equality. Some how it can run of the energy of garbage or food waste.

Just throwing it out there...

An Adventurous Day

I woke up this morning, and read some more Shockwave Rider. Got on my bike with some of the recycling I had been collecting and road off down Alameda Street. While on the bike in traffic, a homeless woman wondered around me and other cars asking for change. She would' t talk to me when I asked here where she was from. Road towards 6th on my way to the recycling center and met a homeless man just siting on the curb. He was from Massachusetts. He asked if I had change and I gave him my bag of cans. I thought it was fair. That would have been the change I gave him if I had turned it in. Right?

I then made my way down old skid row. (DUM DUM DAH) Note: this is all during the day time. even the homeless said don't go there at night.
I first go to the Midnight Mission.

I make some new friends while I walk inside the gate. There are just people spread out everywhere on benches and bags. I brought my bike in and then some woman who had a badge on and white shirt started to yell at me. She asked what I was doing there and why and I can't bring a bike on to the patio. She directed me to talk to a person inside who bounced me to another who bounced me to another. All I got after that was a card of someones who I need their permission to ask the people where they've been since they strive for an anonymous environment. The shelter is a point of sanctuary. I move on.
Alot of people also sleep in the adjacent park. I noticed more families there. The next mission was between 5th and 4th on San Pedro. No court yard. This one seemed more like a hospital. I went in and talked to a guard who told me to wait for one of the directors and then ultimately the director said no questions for these people. Ok.

I then head to the LA Mission. On the way I found a bread tab so I thought everything will probably work out with me asking. I ride up. Park the bike. And go in the gates. This one was the most relaxed than the others. They let me talk to the people but not the ones who were taking classes at that time. I asked the main supervisor if he knew anything about people being bussed in from different cities, specifically New Orleans after Katrina. He said it was news to him.

Here are the results of my efforts, as from what people told me:
  • 2Massachuesetts
    • 1 Boston
  • 1 Iowa
  • 1 Rhode Island
  • 1 Washington State
  • 3 Texas
    • 1 Houston
    • 1 Beaumont
  • 1 Guatemala
  • 1 Chicago, Illinois
  • 1 Ohio, Massillion
  • 16 Los Angeles,
    • 1 Compton, LA
  • 7 Mexico
    • 3 Vera Cruz, Mexico
  • 1 New Jersey
    • 1 Fort Dixon, New Jersey
  • 1 Pittsburgh
  • 1 San Diego
  • 1 Puerto Rico
  • 3 Detroit
  • 1 New York City
  • 1 Rochester, New York
  • 1 Peru
  • 1 Washington DC
  • 1 Las Vegas
  • 1 Honduras
  • 1 St. Petersburg, Florida
  • 1 Philadelphia
  • 19 New Orleans, Louisiana, who all got bussed after Katrina
  • 1 from outer space

All this information has been mapped on the Homeless map that is on the right side of this blog.

I ended up talking to a guard named Renard for a bit. He has been working security for the mission for the past 15 years. He said he was working on a movie about Skid Row, not a documentary. He said not everyone who is at the shelter is homeless. He said people come down there to hang out, smoke up in the yard, buy crack at the corner, run away from domestic situations, or just stay there if they don't want to go home. He said it is a place where people run away from responsibility. Another Other Space if you will. This is also similar to the paid avoidance places in Shockwave Rider, but these places are free. Free food. Free Clothing. Free Shelter.

I met another man walking around, nicely dressed with a manila folder. He said he was a economist. He thought I was studying sociology. The guard asked me if I was a social worker, when I said architect he asked me to draw something. The manila folder man also confirmed that during the winter months other cities bus there homeless to LA so they don't have to house them. Tons from NYC, Philly and what not. So come November, we will see an influx of the homeless population in Downtown LA.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Validation points!

I wanted to put this up here. Over all I think it helps to validate my idea of making the "vernacular spectacular. " I need to start throwing a tm after that.

This is an abridged version of the crit/talk I had with Ed Keller over Skype:

ok, first: I think you should be careful about the fake personality baiting people online. That stuff has an all too high percentage probability of cascading back into reality.
First thoughts
the homeless/gloryhole/breadtabs and fruit do all connect in a weird way.
And depending on the way it's read, or the people you track, it could
be positive, transcendent, etc... or on another line, pretty evil.
So... step lightly....
im sorry you could you explain, evil isn't my intent.
Oh I didn't mean your agenda!!!! it's basic: if you create a false id with another gender, etc, and for one reason or another folks out there who might have a higher [infinitely?] pain tolerance
level begin to take interest... that's not what you want.
I am just suggesting caution, you know, basic common sense. it's a caveat emptor, or more professionally as a representative of SCIArc,
I have to say 'stop!' be careful.
right right right.. ok i thought the connection of the 4 elements had
an evil part to them... with he alt. persona, i don't reveal
anything, just to find out where the location is. i haven't gone
physically to these holes yet because i was afraid to do it alone.
Also, if you are using so many interfaces for deployment, you are creating a meta profile that will make it easy for the motivated individual to find o0ut who you really are. CF oyur platial uses. so you have to be savvy. For example I have no idea what you might expect if you visited a site, but i would guess that you could get into any range of situations. So, once again, and then I'll move on:
please be careful, and know what you are doing. LA is a crasy nasty place like all big cities [ and plenty of small ones]. with that said. I think that there is a theoretical value to the
glory hole stuff...the website you found which tries to situate D&G in that space. But, as I mentioned in the earlier email- depends on how rigorously one reads the whole BwO thing, and what one might imagine it would mean to have 'an organ'. Personally i think they were not against organs of any kind, but against a paradigm that saw the world only thru
superficial conditions which could then be ascribed to what one saw at the macroscopic level as an organ. an eye, an ear, a sense, a finger, skin, etce etc.
Now I don't want to sound too dry and cautious and hoity toity about old D+G and how they should be read. Cause I see some pretty interesting connections between the scope of the different populations you are starting to map. The breadties are real, there are billions
of them, but there are almost totally insignificant. I checked that [humorous[ taxonomy website. So it seems that there is a meta theme that you are developing, which
is something related
im in contact with the guy who started it. he's in Berkley, studied
invertebrate zoology and sculpture now he does visual effects on the
computer like "monsters and spaceship" and ive been in contact with other bread tab enthusiasts so they can help me map it
that is great. it is a subsubsubculture, but nonetheless a very interesting one.
I suppose that the concept of the SPIME that bruce sterling talks
about will ultimately be present even in bread tabs.
so i have to ask you as well, if you find one please tell me where
you find it, street address or about and if you can photo graph it..
have you read Pynchon's novel Crying of Lot 49?
a reasonable wiki:
Now, why am i mentioning this?
well, pattern recognition. Fredric Jameson has a number of things to
say about Pynchon's amazing ability as a voyant, in his own book Geopolitical Aesthetic.
And Pynchon is so good at seeing the connections bettween seemingly
unrelated things. And finding pattern even in things like, well, breadties...!
seems that you are concerned with use value- and to the way that
taxonomy of seemingly tiny, or dislocated bodies- might accrue to something much more significant.Anyhow, one theme I see here because you focus on the homeless- which
has a deeply ethical potential reading- and on the fallen fruit,
which also raises an interesting issue vis. access, energy, legal lines and lot lines, etc etc-
is that you are concerned with agency that each of these bodies would have.
yes, each having individual agency but having a catalyst affect on each others
I think- to cut to the chase here- that
you have to CLEARLY state
what you think each bodie's ability is [individual or collective, vis- one homeless person, or a million bread ties] and then you have to abstract that knowledge, so that you can
understand- through diagrams, maps, perhaps scripting- the way that a
generalized version of each agents' abilities could migrate to other agents.

you mentioned it all connecting a-la Amores Perros.
looking for a mechanism for their intertwined narratives/existances
to to expose themselves
OK. Could be fictional; like Amelie, which Bjork was looking at; ? there are great examples of those kinds of narrative. Red by Kieslowski. City of Lost Children has some amazing 'Rube
Goldberg' type sequences of connectivity. Amateur by Hal Hartley.
Or could be real world where you track real connections, energy, etc expended....
it is also to me a fascinating book because it deals with a lot of territory that Bataille covers in Accursed Share Vol. 1, but F-Galiano never footnotes or mentions Bataille. Which I've thought is weird. Ah, well there you go. And the issue of energetic accumulation in
systems is definitely present in all four of your examples. And expenditure, too. And excess.
It might be an enjoyable read for you and help the project. I liked the book a lot.
thank you. im on it.
OK. well in summary I would go back to a comment I made a little while ago.
There have got to be aspects of each population you are dealing with that can be connected to via design moves. I would say that any analytic you pursue should always be looking
for the design parameters and how they will inflect the individ/population behaviors. Does that sort of make sense? I hope so, it's a little vague, but think of the way that the design of the bread tie could change through a minute inflection the way it is used, or in a technologically inflected way [say it was biodegradable over six months] would then change the way it affects the landscape/ ecosystems- or if embedded with RFID tags, would change tracking of loaves of bread and indeed the users/eaters of the loaves... and
provide a really amazing map of those populations....

Pretty thorough and thick. more later...
I have to go scope out some homeless...

More, more, more...

How do you like it? Well some people deffinately like it through the hole. Just to throw these out there: here are some things you'll find on craigslist:

I'm Looking for Public Sex - 34

Reply to: Date: 2007-10-01, 8:06AM PDT Married Bi Guy here looking for public Glory Holes to use. Love to get my 7" cock sucked off through an anonymous hole. No questions asked, just suck me off. 34, 6-1, 175#, hairy chest, 7" cut with big loads. Let me know where I can go get serviced. Isn't that just charming? Married bi guy. What a great profile. On another note, there are a lot of posts that are asking where the glory holes are. I guess there is not directory. No wonder I have not had many hits or answers to my posts.

Where are all the glory holes in the valley? - m4w - 33

notice the male for woman!

Any Glory holes available this morning - 38

Reply to:
Date: 2007-09-26, 6:47AM PDT

Looking to visit a glory hole. Nochit chat or BS. I come in and find the hole. ( maybe just a sheet in the hallway. I enter and you do your thing. white clean 6'2 225 thick 7 " cut

That one is really low key, sheet in the hallway. That's a design build problem.
I am making a grid dash tree diagram of the functions and participators of glory holes.
I have a lot of graphic photos and will be using them . I am pulling out my old faithful Edward R. Tufte book to keep me company also.