In this weeks “unlecture” Brian, Adian and Elliot discussed the question: “What kind of genre is an interactive documentary? Is it still a documentary, or would you say that it is a new genre because of the hyper textual interface?”. In my week 6 post I wrote about the interactive documentary without knowing the answer to this question. Adrian described the difference between fiction and documentary as the following; fiction is about a world whereas documentary is about the world. If that’s the case, then the interactive documentary is still a documentary, because it is still about the world even though the audience of the interactive documentary decides the final plot of the movie.
This leads to the interesting thought about the author having any control at all. Brian, Adrian and Elliot did not agree about whether the author has control or not, and the same goes for cultural theorists Harold Lasswell and Stuart Hall. Lasswell compare the society with a biological organism, which in this case means that the author can manipulate his readers the way he wants. Lasswell would therefor argue that the author has complete control of the way his words get interpreted by his audience – communication is transmission – a one way communication where the audience, society is considered a group of people without any individuality at all. In the opposite corner, Hall argues that these people have individual demographics which makes it possible for each of them to decode the authors message differently. In this argument the author will not have the same control over the interpretation.
So, how does hypertext relate to storytelling in different media? During the beta symposium I thought about one of my other subjects this semester – “Introduction to Advertising”. When doing a advertising campaign it is important to choose the correct media channels for the campaign in order to target the right audience. With hypertext and hyperlinks it is possible for advertisers to create a whole universe around a brand, using different platforms and types of media and furthermore different kinds of storytelling.
Adrian said that the why the hypertext subject figure in Networked Media, is because hypertext is about small parts that together perform a whole. It is not about navigation, it is about structure. The IT University Copenhagen is annually launching the “48HourGames” which shortly is about programmers, creative gamers and others having 48 hours to complete some sort of a computer game. People behind the event created a documentary about the event in 2012 and it was first shown at the CPH DOX as a interactive documentary in a cinema. The documentary is a good example of how hypertext can interfere with different genres, and therefor extend the genre and its attributes.
Sorry about this post. It might seem weird but I’m about to hand in an assessment this friday together with a COMPLETED blog audit from. As you can see underneath I’ve been missing out on some of the task during my blogging this semester… so have fun with it!
Embed a Vine clip in a blog post:
Embed a instagram video in a blog post:
Embed a instagram photo in a blog post:
Send something from my phone to my blog (this part was done on my iphone):
This weeks readings were about hypermedia and hypertexts. Vannevar Bush and the Memex machine show the principle behind hypertexts – a non-linear example of a science relationship that are built up associatively. Theodor Nelson defines hypertexts as text pieces which relates to each other through hyperlinks. Nelson describes how hypertexts may create new forms of writing which better reflect the structure of what we are writing about, and the readers of those hypertexts might follow their interests of thoughts when reading, instead of following the chronological path already made by the writer. Furthermore he claims that people have been speaking in hypertexts codes all their lives without knowing it.
With today’s online networked media we are used to using hyperlinks and reading in the hypertext-mode especially when reading blogs, but also when we are reading news articles etc. And it works: “It is in many orders of magnitude the largest collection of human writings and works in history. It is far more robust than networks far smaller, yet it was created without managers” (Weinberger 2002 – about the Web). This is where the power of crowd-sourcing gets interesting. When looking at Wikipedia it is possible to describe it as self-evaluating because of the size of the network involved. Interesting if you ask me…
Thought about not doing this week’s “unlecture” post, but since I ran in to the group of teachers (National Tertiary Education Union) who were actually the reason for this week’s cancelled “unlecture”, I took some photos. Speculative thoughts about speculative talks in the “unlecture” will be back next week – week 6!
In this weeks ‘unlecture’ Adrian explained an interesting point to the class: “Don’t think of yourselves as content producers”. This sentence makes sense if Bruno Latour’s actor-network theory is understood. The actor-network theory (ANT) is a sociological-anthropological theory and method to be used when investigating social phenomenons. ANT describes a network. The network that occurs between heterogeneous and non-heterogeneous actors is the network that produces content, because it is both the heterogeneous and non-heterogeneous actors that acts and it is the relations between those act that creates the final content. An example is the man and the gun. The man can’t shoot someone without the gun and the gun can’t shoot someone without the man, but together they become able to shoot someone (See picture below). So the ANT assume objectives is equivalent with subjectives when it comes to creating the actual action in the end. In relation to networked media and our blogging in this course, we yourselves are not content producers. I am just a student that are able to spell, and therefor at can write down my thoughts. But my computer is another actor that has a keyboard and the internet is the actor that provides me the URL. So in collaboration we work together a blogpost. You might even say that the content in the end is created not only by me and my computer, but in collaboration with other students/teachers in this course and their computers.
This weeks ‘unlecture’ was again performed differently by Adrian and his accomplices. But if you ask me, it worked. I think that the 50 minutes now contained a lot of interesting points from different perspectives. Therefor I have quite a lot of keywords in my notebook to write about even thought this weeks subject was ‘Design Fiction’ again. Apparently I missed out on a few interesting points when it comes to ‘Design Fiction, but I think that Brian explained the difference between ‘Design Fiction’ and ‘Science Fiction’ in an understandable way: ‘Design Fiction’ is speculating about how the actual design is going to fit in to an organisation, institution, society etc. ‘Science Fiction’ is more keen on speculate about the one technology and how it works. Brain also argued that ‘Design Fiction’ is humble and that it is not about creating the perfect solution and therefor it is not about saving the planet with one great technology solution. No, ‘Design Fiction’ is about “what people do matter”.
The “unlecture” of week 3 was not like last week. I spend 50 minutes in the theatre listening to Adrian talking, and after class I only remembered what would be 15 seconds of talking. But that doesn’t mean that the 15 seconds I remember wasn’t important, in fact I think these 15 seconds might be the summary of what Adrian was trying to tell us during the 50 minutes:
“People, this is an invitation to dance. Just because you don’t know the steps it’s not an excuse to not join in”
The readings for this week – week 3, were about Design Fiction (DF). So what is DF? According to Matthew Ward DF is: “DF as a pedagogic practice allows students to think about the future (consequences, possibilities, actions and events) through the very material of their practice.” So DF is a practice were we allow ourselves to work with a set of future expectations while producing ideas. We use the “what if”-question as a support to the otherwise creative thinking that has no boundaries. Therefor with DF we create knowledge in the frames of knowing about the future.
The article “Sci-Fi Writer Bruce Sterling Explains the Intriguing New Concept of Design Fiction” is about Bruce Sterling and his explanation of DF. When I read the article I didn’t really understand the concept, but I liked the examples presented in the article. Especially the one where an iPad is used as an sci-fi prop in the movie “2001: A Space Odyssey” from 1969. I bet that no one imagined that the iPad actually would become real in todays society.