Week 11: Reading Response to “A History of Internet Art” (Lu & Syed) Ellen

This article introduces the history of the net art in the last century, mainly from 1995-1997. Many net artists appeared at that time, programming great and various types of projects on the web that are in the form of websites. From the characteristics of the projects, we can say that the nature of net art is sharing, communicating and gregarious, relates tightly with self-expression of the communities.

Through the net art, people can communicate with each other without limitation. The freedom of expression of the websites allows the artists to speak and communicate with each other. Net art projects are really helpful when it comes to promoting feminism or the rights of other minority groups because the community nature of net art gather the minority groups together and provide a place for them to discuss and express themselves.

However, the openness of net art still triggers some problems. The article mentions that some net artists are afraid that the net art will be over-commercialized and be colonized by mainstream media so that the feature of minority community will fade out. I have experienced a similar situation when one of my favorite websites becomes really popular and the people engaged in later are not so concerned about the art itself. While witnessing something I love becoming popular is a happy experience, the following result might not be that good for the beginners.

Video Project (Lu & Syed) Ellen Ynag

Description:

This video project is aimed at presenting the problem of discrimination and stereotype. Our group (Ivan, me and Jaime Z) want to do a parallel comparison between a white girl and a colored girl in order to show how the seemingly same daily life is different to them. By showing this, our advice is to pay attention to your thoughts about minority groups: your thoughts and behavior might hurt them just because of the stereotype that you don’t even notice. Along with the two comparison videos we put many interviews aside. By letting people talk about their own experience, we want the user to be more engaged in the situation and understand that discrimination is not far away from us — it is happening really near.

Website Link:

http://imanas.shanghai.nyu.edu/~cic278/CommLab/Mitodo/video.html

Discussion of the Process:

At first, when we design the plot of the comparison video we had four scenes in total; but after we shot the videos we found that it is actually very difficult to shoot in the first-person perspective so we eliminate them to two scenes. Even though we cut the amount, the quality of the comparison video is still not very good. On editing the website, I used Adobe Pr and Audacity to adjust the length and the audio of the final videos, Ivan did the coding and used java functions to control the audio of each video. Jaime shot the plot videos and she also played a role in those videos.

Challenges and Learnings:

The biggest challenge is to shoot video while walking; for me, it’s editing the videos. Some of the scenes were shot many times.

Week 8: Video Project Proposal (Lu & Syed) Ellen Yang & Carlos Ivan Cornejo & Jamie Zaharoni

The video we’ll be creating is educational. We hope to tell people the danger of Internet by telling the story of the main character A (haven’t decided the name yet)

The main plot:

A (the character) occasionally gets into a killer website. A is half sacred and half curious. Out of curiosity, A pays a small amount of money to the website to kill a cat — A doesn’t really think this is gonna happen. However, a few days later, A receives an email that contains the photos taken as proof of killing a cat. A is totally scared and never gets into that website ever since.

Warning at last: DO NOT DO ANYTHING ILLEGAL ON THE WEB! This is dangerous and may lead you to danger.

In the video, one of us will play the role of A. However, we are not going to show the face of the main character. All that will appear in our video will be a computer and the content on the screen. Also, we’ll not kill a cat (this is just a plot need) for recording. We will cut some paper and put mosiac on to pretend there is a cat body.

Audio Project (Lu & Syed) Ellen

Description: 

This audio project is done by me, Raza Haider Naqvi and Zain Majid. The audio is inspired by a video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKBNEEY-c3s&feature=youtu.be that tells the story of a 3-year-old Syrian refugee who tried to travel across the Mediterranean Sea but drowns dead in his journey. In our audio, we describe two situations of Syrian people: before and after the war; the happy life they had is of strong comparison with the tragedy happened later: the gunshot, the bomb, the fleeing… In that way, we want the viewer to sympathize the Syrian refugees and help them by donating to the tree websites listed at the bottom of the website.

The website part is simple. We include a photoshopped picture, several texts and three website logos that contain the website links.

Website Link:

http://imanas.shanghai.nyu.edu/~rhn225/week7/audio/audiopro.html

Discussion of the Process:

At first, we use audacity to make our audio. The process is quite smooth, but the time of the whole audio is too long: it was originally 5:46 minutes, and later we shorten it into 4:46 minutes. The audio part takes us 2 days to complete.

The website part is the truly hard part. First, we want the texts to be typed with a typing animation, but the paragraphs cannot be typed with CSS animation; we tried js but failed. Second, we would like the audio to be played along with some words appearing at the same time, which also needs js animation; but we finally give up because we don’t know how and we think that the visual part might affect the experience of the viewer to listen to our audio.

Challenges and Learnings:

The main challenge we meet is the typing animation. First I learned how to use audio tags to switch audio source (we wanted the typing sound as well with the typing animation) although we didn’t use it at last; also I reviewed how to use CSS to create typing animation. In this process, I also learned a small skill called “auto scroll down” by using js function. On the other hand, I learned how to use audacity.

What would be changed if I do it again?

I still want to add the typing animation using js function. That’s very cool.

Week 7: Reading Response to “The Danger of a Single Story” (Lu & Syed) Ellen

In this TED video, Chimamanda Adichie tells the “danger of a single story” by explaining her experience. She claims that when you hear or see stories about others, no matter they are other nations or other ethnics, keep in mind that these stories are not complete. Do not judge others by stereotype, or you will get in the danger that you miss something wonderful.

I totally agree with Adichie. I think that many conflicts and misunderstandings happen because people get into the danger of “a single story”. There are many martial arts in China, but not every Chinese can do them perfectly as Lee; some African countries are developing, but not all African people live an original lifestyle… So the lesson we can learn from the video can be concluded in one sentence: “未知全貌,不予置评。” which means: “if you don’t know the complete story, do not judge it easily.” It comes from one of my favorite novels.

Week 8: 3 Moments That Excites Me Most in VR

The first moment, which impresses me most in the VR world, is the scene I saw in Blortasia on HTC Vive. The beautifully designed pipe is presented like a flowing painting, and the experience of flying inside and around the pipe is very realistic. In this scene, you can directly travel through the walls of the pipe, and the feeling that you will crush the wall is so real that it is almost scary. However, it is the realness that makes me so impressed and I can’t help but travel through it again and again. Although there is no interaction between me and the scene, it is still very enjoyable just to see the beautiful painting-like scenery.

The second is a little scary. It is the game scene from Resident Evil 7 on Sony PS4. I didn’t play much into the plot (because I was so scared) but the little I played with was enough for me to feel the realness and tension in this game. The dim light, the scruffy room, and the bloody items spreading around created a feeling of reality that you cannot experience even in reality. The elaborate model of the room is so impacting that it is similar to a game CG, but even more durable because you can freely look through it instead of watching a settled moment.

The last one is the game experience from Audioshield. Playing with Audioshield is a little bit different from mobile audio games, although they are similar in the way of interacting with music rhythm. Since you have to move your arms when catching the balls that fly towards you, playing with Audioshield can be tiring, but it is also very fun. It is more like playing the mobile audio game in the VR world.

Week 6: Reading Response to Theft And Artistry (Lu & Syed) Ellen

This article starts with the heated debate over the song of Coldplay and Beyonce’s new song “Hymn for the Weekend”. This song borrows a lot from Indian culture, which triggered the debate about cultural appropriation. While whether the cultural appropriation is right or wrong remains subjective, the effect of the appropriation is the true problem: when people see something from a different culture in an artwork, it is easier to stereotype this impression in their mind, which degrades that culture into a sub-culture.

I believe this is true and I also believe that this phenomenon is not restricted to artistry. People tend to understand the information from any different culture in the way of thinking in their own culture — while this is related to how the presenter presents the information (like in the video, Beyonce wears the traditional Indian costume and uses many Indian elements), we should be careful when we receive that information, no matter where we receive it. Another point is that when we are going to use elements from other cultures, we should also be careful.

Week 6: 4 new titles and 4 old titles

4 new titles:

Audioshield          Vive           9

#chanllenging# #catching# #enjoyable# #user-friendly# #similartomobilemusicgame#

This game is really challenging! Since you need to watch carefully the colors of all the balls that come towards you and react quickly with both your hands, this game might be a good practice to those who cannot balance their left and right sides of the body. As a game, Audioshield is very user-friendly as you don’t need to remember difficult practices. In this sense, it is very similar to the mobile music games which require users to use fingers instead of arms.

Blortasia               Vive             4

#meaningless# #beautiful# #experience# #smooth#

I don’t really get the point of this game. It is just a set of a very complicated pipe and the user just needs to travel around it. The experience is quite smooth as you travel faster and faster. The design of the pipe is also very beautiful. Not much interaction.

Eclipse Edge of Light            Daydream            6

#user-friendly# #interactive# #escaping#

In this game, the user is supposed to follow the instructions and do the correct interaction and gets into the next place. This game is friendly to users because it provides a lesson for every interaction that the user needs to do. The interaction is also good. But this game lacks a feeling of insense: no enemies, no goals.

Virtual Virtual Reality           Daydream            6

#daily-life# #notmuchinteraction# #relaxing# #interesting#

It is a very daily life scene and it is good for relaxing. Though I think that there are not many interactions in it: the user just place different things. Nonetheless, I think this is a good experiencing game.

4 old titles

Google Earth              Vive               9

#useful# #greatinteraction# #realworld#

Google Earth is more like a map instead of the game (or it is a map?). Its model is based on real-world landform, and the whole world is included in this VR model. It will be extremely useful when someone would like to go abroad or go to some place that he or she is not familiar with. The real-world experience will help a lot. Nonetheless, there is not much interaction.

Tilt Brush                     Vive                    9

#beautiful# #useful# #interesting# #educational#

Accounting                   Vive                6

#notforchildren# #insulting# #interesting# #fun#

Rush of Blood                  PS4                7

#bloody# #shooting# #scary# #gooddesigned#

Week 6: Reading Responses (Lu & Syed) Ellen

Reading Responses to The Ecstasy of Influence

Jonason Lethem used the quotation from John Donne that “All mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated…” to express his opinion on “plagiarism” issue. This opinion is quite similar to the “Embrace the Remix” video that believes that everything is a remix. What’s different is that this article is emphasized on “translation” of the former work.

I agree with his opinion that some inspiration of creation comes from the knowledge of former works, but I don’t think that an author or artist can borrow and quote from another without an obviuos change in their own works. The process of creation should be “I have an idea of doing A, and I think that B can provide some useful pieces in my work” instead of “I do A because I want to make a revised version of B”.

Reading Response to On the Rights of Molotov Man

This article is more like an interview of the two artists who are involved in the issue of “Molotov Man”. Joy Garnett, the painter, didn’t cite the original work of his painting Molotov Man, which is a photograph of Susan Meiselas, nor ask for permission of use from Susan, exhibited his painting out and his work is further translated into other forms.

In this case, I definitely think that Garnett should cite or ask for permission from Meiselas when he decided to use her photograph. And I do believe that Meiselas has the right to send him a lawyer letter to claim her copyright. However, I don’t agree that the work of someone should not be reproduced in any form. My opinion is: it is who uses the work of others that should cite the author.