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Archive of the category 'Open Source'

Reblog: 26 Places to Find Free Multimedia for Your Blog, by Barb Dybwab

Image and text source: Mashable

Note: Here is an interesting list of resources for remixing already produced material for personal blogs and websites.

Nothing makes a blog post more eye-catching than a great header image, but not all publishers have artistic talent. And even accomplished digital creatives often crave some found material to start from or work with in a project. Luckily for all of the above, sources abound for finding a compelling photo to grab your readers’ eyes and draw them in, or to locate fresh multimedia to remix.

Read the entire list at Mashable.

“After the Blogger as Producer” by Eduardo Navas

Image source: The New Mexico Independent

Written for Interactiva Biennale 2009

The following text was written for Interactiva 09 Biennale, which takes place the month of May and June of 2009.  Other texts written for the biennale can be found at the Interactiva site.

NOTE: I have written a text in which I discuss Twitter in social activism, something which is not included in this text. Please see “After Iran’s Twitter Revolution: Egypt.”

In March of 2005 I wrote “The Blogger as Producer.”[1]  The essay proposed blogging as a potentially critical platform for the online writer.  It was written specifically with a focus on the well-known text, “The Author as Producer,” by Walter Benjamin, who viewed the critical writer active during the 1920’s and 30’s with a promising constructive position in culture. [2]

In 2005 blogging was increasing in popularity, and in my view, some of the elements entertained by Benjamin appeared to resonate in online culture.  During the first half of the twentieth century, Benjamin considered the newspaper an important cultural development that affected literature and writing because newspaper readers attained certain agency as consumers of an increasingly popular medium.  During this time period, the evaluation of letters to editors was important for newspapers to develop a consistent audience.  In 2005, it was the blogosphere that had the media’s attention.  In this time period, people who wrote their opinions on blogs could be evaluated with unprecedented efficiency. [3]

Brief Notes on Janneke Adema’s “Schyzophonia. On Remix, Hybridization and Fluidity”

Walter Benjamin

Image source: Open Reflection

Critical Note: Janneke Adema recently wrote a long post on her blog Open Reflections about remix culture, titled “Schyzophonia. On Remix, Hybridization and Fluidity.” Aderna cites parts of my essay “Remix The Bond of Repetition and Representation” in order to extend her own views on remix culture. One thing that caught my attention is the concept of the “work in progress” which she entertains when citing an interview with Joe Farbrook. Farbrook’s propositions are parallel to my own views on constant updating, about which I wrote a couple of years ago in another essay titled “Regressive and Reflexive Mashups in Sampling Culture.” Adema interestingly enough considers knowledge remixable, and she cites my own position on history to support her argument. While I don’t think knowledge itself is necessarily remixable in terms of Remix proper, I am compelled by Adema’s argument. On this regard, the following question recurs: When should one stop calling cultural hybridity a form of remix? On her part, I think Adema does a good job in entertaining this preoccupation, ending with a reference to none other than Walter Benjamin. The article is worth a careful read. Other great resources are mentioned as well.

I read Lawrence Lessig’s Remix a few months ago, a great book with a stimulating positive approach to the whole piracy and copyright problema, focusing on finding solutions which cater to the increasingly prevailing remixed and remediated forms of digital art and culture, in which the hybrid has become common ground. Lessig discusses new musical ‘innovators’ like Girl Talk, who creates elaborate and eclectic remixes of current pop sounds and anthems, creating a new musical discourse which reflects, winks, ironizes and mocks, while still standing firmly on its own. These kind of adaptations, versionings or reinterpretations have been part of music since its beginnings, coming to the forefront mostly in dub, hiphop, turntablism and the use of samples in electronic music. Just think about all the beats, breaks, loops and glitches that have made a career for themselves and their derivative offspring in musical history.

Read the entire article at Open Reflections

The State of Swift Production: Interactivos?’08 (part 3 of 3), by Eduardo Navas

Image: Anaisa Franco, Testing software for “Expanded Eye”

See Part 1: http://remixtheory.net/?p=315
See Part 2: http://remixtheory.net/?p=319

Interactivos?’08-Madrid promoted Vision-play as a point of entry to reflect on how interactivity is redefining aesthetics in art particularly invested in emerging technologies. The Medialab-Prado website presented the two week work intensive series of events as a “workshop [that] aims to use open hardware and open code tools to create prototypes for exploring image technologies and mechanisms of perception.”[1]

To provide a rigorous contextual ground following this premise as a frame of reference for artists and collaborators, the Medialab organized a two day long conference in which artists presented their projects and scholars and writers presented papers focused on the ongoing changes of the image (vision-play) in contemporary art production. On the first day Marta Morales presented “Caída del juego: lo inaparente en la imagen” (Fall of the Game: The Inapparent in the Image), a text in which she explored the void of experience leaning towards the sublime in the work of Giacommeti; she examined his work from drawings to sculptures. I followed with “The Bond of Repetition and Representation,” in which I outlined previously introduced definitions of Remix and their links to the ongoing play between repetition and representation in digital media. Nadine Wanono then discussed her research on Visual Anthropology in “The Camera and The Perspective, as Tool and Metaphor.” In her talk she questioned the supposed objectivity of perspective, both formally and conceptually, when anthropologists study non-western cultures. Wanono’s presentation consisted of selected research she performed in Mali, West Africa, where she spent many years with the Dogon people. And the evening ended with Domingo Sarrey who presented “Cuadrats 40 años después” (Quadrats, 40 Years Later). Sarrey took the evening when he made many Spaniards in the audience aware about art and computer science explorations that took place in Madrid during the sixties. Sarrey was one of the first artists in Madrid to use the computer to develop drawings during that time period. (more…)

Youtube Video: DJ Spooky – That Subliminal Kid -Remix Culture

Still from Youtube upload: Spooky lectures on Remix Culture and Sampling

Looking for material on Remix Culture, I recently ran into this two hour lecture by DJ Spooky at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Spooky beat juggles history to argue his position on sampling. From the Phonograph to the Jamaican Sound System, one gets a good sense of the potential creativity that Spooky and other promoters of Remix Culture believe in. Some of the questions at the end are quite interesting, and challenging. Definitely worth the 100 minutes of your time.

Wikipedia Questions Paths to More Money, by The Associated Press

Image Capture: Remix Theory

Text source: NYTimes
Scroll the list of the 10 most popular Web sites in the U.S., and you’ll encounter the Internet’s richest corporate players — names like Yahoo, Amazon.com, News Corp., Microsoft and Google.

Except for No. 7: Wikipedia. And there lies a delicate situation.

With 2 million articles in English alone, the Internet encyclopedia ”anyone can edit” stormed the Web’s top ranks through the work of unpaid volunteers and the assistance of donors. But that gives Wikipedia far less financial clout than its Web peers, and doing almost anything to improve that situation invites scrutiny from the same community that proudly generates the content.

And so, much as how its base of editors and bureaucrats endlessly debate touchy articles and other changes to the site, Wikipedia’s community churns with questions over how the nonprofit Wikimedia Foundation, which oversees the project, should get and spend its money.

Read the entire article at a  NYTimes

EMI in Talks to Dump Copy Protection, by Jefferson Graham

Blue Note’s recording artist Norah Jones with Lee Alexander on bass and Adam Levy on guitars performing at House of Blues in Los Angeles.
Image source: skipbolenstudio.com/

Text source: USA Today


LOS ANGELES — The music industry is looking ahead to life without copy protection.

Major label EMI — home of Coldplay and Norah Jones — is in discussions with online music stores about selling its music without copy protection, or digital rights management (DRM), according to two sources with direct knowledge of the talks who would not speak for attribution because discussions are ongoing.


Open Source at 90 MPH, by Bruno Giussani

Image source: theoscarproject.org
Text source: Business Week
December 8, 2006

Inspired by Linux, the OScar project aims to build a car by tapping the knowledge of a volunteer team. It won’t be an easy ride, but their journey is important

The computer operating system Linux and the Web browser Firefox are generally considered the two biggest successes of the movement to develop open-source programs—software anyone can modify, transform, and redistribute back into the community. While there are thousands of other examples, Linux and Firefox have managed to mount serious competition to established commercial products, and have therefore come to represent this specific, collective mode of creation.

But Linux and Firefox are made of bits. They are immaterial. Bits can be shared and sent around easily, so that distant people can work on them concurrently; bugs can be corrected almost instantly; new versions containing updates, improvements, or fixes can be released virtually for free.


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