LIVE, WORK, CREATE

Ayinde Chong M.A. Emergent Digital Practices

Edward Scissortongue - Theremin (OFFICIAL VIDEO)
theremin recognition in hip hop??!!

(Source: youtube.com)

youmightfindyourself:

Keith Haring relentlessly practiced his drawing so that he could execute images effortlessly, as if muscle memory would kick in and he could paint with the finesse of a dancer. Here is a still from Painting Myself into a Corner (1979, video). (via)

youmightfindyourself:

Keith Haring relentlessly practiced his drawing so that he could execute images effortlessly, as if muscle memory would kick in and he could paint with the finesse of a dancer. Here is a still from Painting Myself into a Corner (1979, video). (via)

(via bklynzulu)

further analysis of ambient music…

Ambience as music;

 

It was English musician, sound designer and conceptualist Brian Eno who first officially coined the phrase “ambient”. In the sleeve notes to his 1978 opus Ambient 1: Music For Airports he defines it as music “designed to induce calm and space to think”. Eno’s concept of ambience is music that can be either actively listened to or used as background, depending on whether the listener chooses to pay attention or not. It’s been a highly influential if not entirely original idea; at best informing the resurgence of electronic ambient via the dance world, at worst being taken to its passive extreme by many creators of “relaxation” music.

 

 

The Classical avant-garde

 

One of ambient music’s prime sources is the classical avant-garde. Among the pioneers were two late-19th Century composers, Claude Debussy and Erik Satie. Satie’s concept of “furniture music” for solo piano or small ensembles now seems surprisingly congruous with Eno’s concept of ambience: creating a sound environment that complimented the surrounds rather than intruded upon it. More musically direct but just as subtle and suggestive was the work of Debussy, who’s wandering, impressionistic tone poems like “Prelude To The Afternoon Of The Fawn” (1894) heralded a new openness in Western music and broke all kinds of rules in structure and linear composition.

By the middle of the 20th Century the American composer John Cage had blown stuffy notions of “proper” music right out of the water. He pre-empted world music with pieces that evoked the sounds of Africa, India and Indonesia; he invented and composed for the ‘prepared piano’ with objects stuck in piano wires to create Asian-like tones and percussive textures; and he outraged and perplexed his audiences with collisions of randomly created noise and, most infamously, his piece “4’33” which challenged listeners to consider silence as a perfectly valid form of musical expression.

After Cage, the 1960’s saw the rise of a school of American composers with classical backgrounds who became known as the minimalists. They took the idea of repetition and explored it over long distances, whether with orchestras, organs, electric instruments or non-Western instrumental combinations. In turn minimalism was to inform music as diverse as Krautrock, techno and new age and relaxation music. It was also during the 60’s that non-Western sounds and modes of composition seeped into classical, jazz and popular music to an unprecedented degree. And German composer Karl Stockhausen further explored Cage’s tape experiments with his radical tape collages, a precursor to modern digital sampling.

In the late 1960’s rock was enriched enormously by a combination of electronic music technology, psychedelic drugs, ideas from the classical avant-garde and the innovations of jazzmen like Miles Davis. The classical music of India also made an significant impact on Western musicians for the first time, initially championed by minimalists from the classical world such as Terry Riley and La Monte Young and then absorbed by rock acts as diverse as the Beatles and The Incredible String Band.

 

 

 

 

Thesis Statement:

The primary objective of this investigation will be to create graphic scores as an encoded system of notation.  

Metambience and The Techno-Acoustic

Abstract

This intended research investigation will examine the evolution of sound technologies used to create music. Sound has undergone many complex transformations in the past century; first music was deconstructed from its previously strict form, moving from formal constraints to more accessible melodies. Second, the way in which music was generated radically changed as new electronic equipment inspired experiments with sound divorced from traditional acoustic instruments. More and more, innovative musical ideas became intertwined with technological change. Multi-track recording, editing, and improved microphones allowed for quieter, experimental elements to gain prominence. And with the advent of digital synthesizers, new music could be made by anyone and sound like almost anything or possibly nothing at all.

 This project will expand upon the cultural role of technology, its use in making music, and the inevitable concerns about authenticity that arise from electronic music and sound technology and its contribution to their contribution to the continually changing sonic landscape in which human society is immersed.

Introduction

In the context of contemporary art and music many may be more familiar with the term graphic notation as apposed to graphic score. For the purposes of this investigation I have chosen to use the term “score” to accompany the graphic term or counterpart as it purely suggests the documentation or scoring of sound rather than notation which refers to a system of organized sound which is not necessarily developed or existent at this point in the investigation. 

Graphic notation is the representation of music through the use of visual symbols outside the realm of traditional music notation. Graphic notation evolved in the 1950s, and it is often used in combination with traditional music notation. Composers often rely on graphic notation in experimental music, when musical notation does not suffice. Figure 1.1 offers a visual reference for the form in which graphic scores tend to take using the digital technologies available now.

Figure 1.1 Video of Full Animated Score

 Graphic notation and scoring is the use of symbols to convey information to the performer about the way the piece is to be performed. These symbols first began to appear in the works of avant-garde composers such as Roman Haubenstock-RamatiMauricio KagelGyörgy LigetiKrzysztof PendereckiKarlheinz Stockhausen, and Iannis Xenakis, as well as the works of experimental composers such as Earle BrownJohn CageMorton Feldman, and Christian Wolff during the 1950s and 60s. It is the works of the latter experimental composers that have had a more substantial influence on this particular venture, particularly John Cage.

Description

This installation will explore how sound informs our emotional condition when in a state of mediated cognition with widely found digital technologies.

          How does sound affect our emotion state subconsciously? More so, when this sound is filtered through means of our commonly used digital tools and technologies, is the value and importance of the sound forgotten? Because we rarely escape the saturation of technologies and the many affects digital devices play in our world, the meaning and significance of sound produced by tools of this nature tends not to be acknowledged and becomes lost with the rise of the latest technological trend. A recent work I would refer to in order to further establish sound or music and it’s informing the emotional condition or vice versa would be Songs to Break Up To (Ta-Ku). In a recent interview, Ta-Ku explained in full detail the aesthetic he was attempting to achieve with the audio work not just by way of the title but also in how various samples, tones, and frequencies were used throughout the creation to establish an overall tone for the work. Link to Interview and excerpts from Songs To Break Up To

            One way I have envisioned illustrating the significance of the graphic score using the technology available to us presently would be to create a responsive installation environment piece which would also include a program designed in Maxmsp that through the layering, recording, and manipulation of the input and output channels composes audio of an immersive quality giving a sound design experience complete with visual components, with the focus being on the sound element. The program will function similarly to some existing technologies, perhaps even accessing them or using the API of Wefeelfine.org (Harris, Jonathan). The goal is to allow the user to select settings based on mood in order to create an audio artifact or sound design that can be transposed to a graphic score, notation structure or customized using a library of etudes produced from research conducted looking at human emotion in the context of digital technologies. To exemplify this aspect of the project, I would like to illustrate my vision according to a site-specificity of the installation and using the audience as sculptural sound elements (further representing the graphic notational element) whose physical data will be interpreted programmatically within the installation and output as audio that will harmonize with, compliment, or accompany the ambient sound created by the space. The use of programmatic software in the installation environment will provide the ability for image projection and audio content by manipulating the data of the color values and how they are changing while people enter and exit the space. The video in figure 1.1 illustrates how the sonification of color data can be interpreted programmatically. I hope to also program the environment to sense proximity in order to assign values to color groups possibly creating a system of notation and how the data corresponds within itself.

Full Video Link           

Figure 2.1

            In traditional conceptions artworks are seen as a duality comprising of the real and the symbolic Representation. Although some art forms, such as motion pictures, dance, and other visual art arguably bring the concept and its representation closer to some form of unity. Sound has traditionally maintained a separation between the scored representation and the physical performance: the audience most likely never sees the score; and today, most often, music is listened to as recorded playback. Neither the score, the musicians, nor the instruments that originally produced the sound, need be present. Perhaps going back to the amphitheaters of ancient Greece, perhaps further, sound technology has been used to affect the perception and aesthetic evaluation of place, a location. “Metambient” hopes to use sound technology and it’s immersive qualities to raise questions about our complex relationships with sound. In figure 1.2, we can see these notions of representation applied to the graphic score in a nature Metambient will treat its participants. Figure 2.2

Full Video Link

Sensory Perception

When addressing “sound technologies” it is important to note the distinction between analogue and digital sound. Though both may fall under the category of electronic media, this distinction is significant because the advent of digital sound technologies—their proliferation and dissemination into widespread use—denotes an important societal milestone. Digital recording creates digital sound by storing the audio as numerical data. This technological advancement changed the way we make and even hear, music and sound. With the ability to manipulate, store, and replicate sound over and over again without degradation, musicologists, technologists, and the sound industry have opened up a whole new set of possibilities that have and are currently changing the way we hear sound and music. Allowing content to be more accessible through the use of digital tools not only means greater potential for the mass production of the content but also indicates the opportunity for remixing, appropriation and re-appropriation of content, and creation and manipulation of sound data and content by innumerable users, not only those trained in music or technology.

Sound or even sound art in itself is a versatile field conceptually linked to contemporary art and various other fields of study by way of the medium’s interactive and sensory nature. Investigation into sound design, sound art, and other constructs aimed at the acoustic senses are often coupled with and cross-referenced against alternate senses. To illustrate my relevance of making these distinctions between sensory apparatuses, I look to Marshall McLuhan’s thoughts on sensory perception, “Media, by altering the environment, evoke in us unique ratios of sense perception … When these ratios change, men change” (McLuhan). In this quote from The Medium is Message; McLuhan speaks of the immersive qualities and the complexity with which our sensory apparatuses are working to process the information or messages output from these technologies. McLuhan notes here that for each individual, each sense, be it tactile, visual, aural, etc., has a ratio unto itself that determines how an individual exists within his or her surroundings. Though primarily concerned with the interplay of human consciousness and its relation to media and the coming about of new technology, McLuhan was very apt in noting the ways in which our sensory perceptions—our various senses—can function independently from one another.     

             Being that McLuhan’s well-known book was published 20 years before the internet became a commonly used technology and two years before ARPANET, many of the technologies available to create sound content (let alone sound art) were not available in the form they are today. However, conceptually, with the advent of television and the growing cinema industry, ideas surrounding consumption of media, and making distinctions between and within what is and was being produced, sound media has been researched further, and works addressing the innovation of how sound is perceived have been pioneered.

Contextually, R. Murray Schafer’s research into environmental sound and acoustic ecologies addresses new ideas of how our perception of sound is changing and adapting. In Soundscape, Schafer contends that we now suffer from an overabundance of acoustic information and a proportionate diminishing of our ability to hear the nuances and subtleties of sound. Our task, he maintains, is to listen, analyze, and make distinctions (Schafer).

            Acoustic ecology, a term coined by Schafer, eludes to the sonic presence in the environment, however in Schafer’s soundscape writing the concepts Schafer shares regarding acoustic ecology involve much more than simply sound and an environmental space but an interactivity between scholars, researchers, activists, and community members alike all brought together by sound as a technological component that plays an integral part in our society. […] From acoustics and psychoacoustics we will learn about the physical properties of sound and the way the human brain interprets sound. From society we will learn how humanity behaves with sounds and how sounds affect and change behavior.

From the arts, particularly music, we will learn how humanity creates ideal soundscapes for that other life, the life of the imagination and psychic reflection. From these studies we will begin to lay the foundations of a new interdisciplinary acoustic design. (Schafer). As a study, acoustic ecology or design examines the intersection of sound and space and helps to inform projects by site-specific artists addressing topics of site and place—such as Modus Operandi by Max Neuhaus (Neuhaus). Such works further explore sonic relationships between ourselves and the environment, which we live in, which could always be seen as interactive.

Interactivity

             Interactivity in the context of new media is defined by the Oxford English Dictionary (ref) as “allowing a two-way flow of information between it (a computer or other electronic device) and a user, responding to the user input.” In life however, interactivity is happening every moment, with all of us. It is this complex of interactivity—loosely, that between the user and a device; that of the individual in a broader field of sound, how one influences and perceives his or her own acoustic ecology; and the interaction of individuals’ acoustic ecologies—it is this concept that “Metambient” hopes to explore and bring to consciousness for the participant.           

            Lev Manovich’s (Oxford Dictionary) explanation of interactivity in the context of sound and new media—more closely related to communication—more accurately parallels interactivity as it is conceived and functions throughout my work. Manovich suggests that interactivity defined in the context of new media art is not a cause and effect action or real-time control over the object but an interplay between the objects and the users. Interactive new media art puts the viewer in a more active role; the “viewer” becomes responsible for the content of the interactive piece through their actions. Perhaps simply the interactive “experience” is different for each user because each user will respond to the piece in a different way (Manovich).

            Within these notions of interactivity lies the emergent nature of the human computer interaction (HCI) where the potential for the physical manifestation of this thesis is generated. This complex of interactivity is both the subject matter of the thesis project “Metambient” and the physical and cultural means by which it will function.

“Metambient”           

            For “Metambient” I am investigating methods for visually encoding notational systems and creating graphic scores to activate awareness of the relationships we have with sound technologies and with sound itself. “Metambient” is also concerned with the fact that HCI affects learning or familiarization with the sonic environment engaged and produced in the experience. The experience of the piece should be unusual enough that, while previous interactions, training, and familiarity with digital sound technology (previous HCIs) will influence participant interaction, such familiarity cannot dictate the interaction. There is a learning curve to “Metambient” as well as an element of improvisation.

            As referenced in relation to R. Murray Schafer’s acoustic ecologies, active, conscious sensory perception becomes the primary point of “Metambient.” A dispelling of what McLuhan would call the Hidden Environment (Schafer). The hidden environment stands in start contrast to wakeful perception. For Schafer, environments are only perceptible if there is an outsider, or a foreign element, or a radical contrast of some sort to bring wakefulness. “Metambient” aims to be that contrast, and thereby to raise questions for the participant concerning his involvement in the creation of his own ambience and acoustic ecology, his contribution to a broader acoustic ecology (or to others’ ambiences) as well as the relationship between various acoustic ecologies.

Taking advantage of the participant’s awareness that he or she is engaging in an “art space,” installation can encourage participant’s cognizance of ambience and the spatial sense of sound. Just as without space there can be neither presence nor environment, each of these concepts seems to evoke the other two. There is not a concept of environment or presence without a concept of space. But, sound alone can create a sense of immersion, and to do so it must create a sense and awareness of space (even if that space is not physically actual). Sound provides to the listener the same qualities that media mediates; the feeling of being here and now, of experiencing oneself as engulfed, enveloped, enmeshed, in short immersed in an environment. Even so, sound’s phenomenal characteristics, such as its intangibility, create a perceptual experience unique to itself and different from those created by other sensory apparatuses. For example, while it is difficult to say exactly how or in what regards, the sense of space that sound (alone) might create is qualitatively different from a sense of space that might be produced by sight.

“Metambient” will use software to program the space to calculate and process the different data sets and values collected in the space and then output them as sound. This happens in a variety of ways, or on a variety of registers, some of which may not be readily apparent to the participant. The purpose of the work is thus to highlight how we might perceive digital media as insubstantial (immaterial) and therefore somehow less real (it is virtual) than other kinds of media, objects, and processes in an environment. That is, digital media as media often has a phenomenal quality of “background.” It both helps to constitute and is included in the sense of ambience. “Metambient” hopes to reveal to the audience (the participant) its complex, difficult to predict, partially intentional, partially passive contribution to the creation of the participant’s ambience.  Although it is mysterious exactly how one contributes to his or her own acoustic ecology, it is clear that he or she does.

The environment is there, is activated, as soon as the participant inhabits it. Or, rather, the room is active, and thus the environment within it and the ambience it has created responds immediately to the participant’s presence. Also, since color will be a programmatic variable the visual color data interpreted by the apparatus, the participant’s previous decisions (what she decided to wear on the day she went to the museum) as well as certain qualities outside of the participant’s control (the color of her hair and skin), the experience creates in collaboration with the participant, the audience, but this portion of it is non-voluntary, or at least uncontrollable, it cannot (given the exclusivity of the experience—the room, the participant, the apparatus) be intentionally manipulated.

            With the other graphic scores, however, there is another register on which this piece is operating. In this, the participant has some influence over what the apparatus senses and responds to, including the selection, sequence, and duration of the graphic scores the participant chooses to input.

            We have to recognize that the preprinted graphic scores, on the one hand, are the only intentional input the participant might give the apparatus; and two, that the very presence of the preprinted graphic scores will influence how the participant interacts with the apparatus. And three, we must recognize that the graphic scores are preprinted: they are of a limited number and therefore of a relatively limited number of combinations.

            This all adds up to an inherent tension built into the ambience-producing, collaborative mechanism of the experience. Primarily, the machine does only what it does, and its design recommends certain behavior or interaction from the participant. While it wouldn’t be accurate to say the machine decides the effect, its influence is greater than the participant’s, and it seems to make the final determination of what is output.

            The participant is part composer, part instrument, part audience, all the while being manipulated by and manipulating the space and the apparatus. This multiagency and ambiguity seems necessary to the work as a reflection of how Users interact with space and media to (consciously and unconsciously generate) ambience.

This project imagines the installation space as mediascape, a four dimensional saturation, particularly bringing the participant’s attention to the fact that he has a relationship to the space he inhabits and navigates, even creatively contributing to the space by interacting with the technology itself as “the User.” The question of execution: how to go about creating such a space, especially when considering the marriage of the senses (sight and sound) in the work such that space itself, as co-created ambience, is mediated — led to the concept for the basic structure of the work.

I currently foresee using a combination of video, sound files, and Maxmsp programming software to activate the immersive installation environment, ideally a relatively enclosed room. The environment will read and respond in various ways to the audience’s presence. But the audience will also be able to take a more deliberate, active role in the installation and how the sonic aspects behave. Graphic scores, printed on some translucent acetate, or manifested in some more physical tangible form will be available for the audience to input into the ambient noise “program.” This is perhaps a second-order mediation, and it may be the kind of generative media experience we are most accustomed to and comfortable with. That is, we are accustomed selecting and ordering media, in sequence and in combination (listening to personalized play lists on streaming audio while reading a novel or adjusting settings on our apps while keeping up with some mode of public transportation, etc.); we are used to pushing buttons and watching and listening to things happen. However, this will hopefully highlight the other way the audience is creatively, if unintentionally, interacting with the environment—that is, merely by being there: one’s acoustic ecology is in part the product of the person themselves. Whether we mean to or not, we always contribute to our ambience.

“Metambient” is a responsive installation environment, engaging space, color, and primarily sound. It uses graphic scores to create ambient sound similar to that of the native acoustic ecology of the space in which it is set up.  However, as visitors enter the space they become a part of the continuously evolving graphic score, themselves changing not only the physical space, but also (and therefore) the notation (the dataset), and therefore in turn changing the sonic output.  This happens in a variety of ways, or on a variety of registers, all of which may not be readily apparent to the participant.

First is the sound average, and the participant contributes to this unintentionally, passively, merely by being present. Having the space (including the audience) interpreted as an averaged single color value and having the numeric data of that color value translated as low frequency sound sets an “ambient tone” for participants to interact with.

The second register involves a delayed playback of sounds occurring within the installation space. These might be sounds of the space (ventilation, etc.), or they may be sounds made by the participant. This second register then, may be passive and active, unintentional and/or intended. Using a program (Maxmsp) that records what can be called the ambience of the space where the installation piece exists (the sounds incidental to the space, be they contributed by the participants or otherwise) allows for a real time simulation (a mediation) of what the ambience of the space might sound like, and it adds a layer to the total audio output, complicating participant interaction.

The third register is wholly active and intentional on the participant’s part. It involves the participant’s manipulation of illustrated graphic scores printed on translucent sheets. This will be the most direct and obvious way the participant will contribute to the generation of the space’s ambience. The participant will have an opportunity to incorporate the scores into the audio output. (I am not sure how the scores will be made available at this point, perhaps they will be housed on a shelving unit, perhaps they will be on moveable frames, or hanging from tracks on the ceiling.) However they are made available, essentially, the participant will have opportunity to feed the graphic scores (as visual data) to the apparatus. The graphic scores thus exemplify the use notation to compose music and harmony.  They also give a point of reference for how physical and visual data can be interpreted and “sonified.” And they add another layer of complexity to the generation of the sonic environment.

Literature Review

The soundscape of the world is changing. Modern humanity is beginning to inhabit a world with an acoustic environment radically different from any hitherto known. These new sounds, which differ in quality and intensity from those of the past, have alerted many researchers to the dangers of an indiscriminate and imperialistic spread of more and larger sounds into every corner of human life(Schafer).This excerpt from Schafer speaks to the fundamental concepts of “Metambient” by giving context for both sound and spatial/environmental interactivity. Giving context in this work was vital to gaining understanding of place and in order to establish the idea of place, parameters must also be established.

Schafer’s research into sound paralleled ideas I was investigating in many cases, largely due to the qualitative nature of the outcome I was hoping to achieve. Schafer was interested in investigating the perception of distinctions made between “natural” and human produced sounds. I am also concerned with an aesthetic and to a certain extent synthetic sonic or acoustic experience (ambient sound)—but defined within the context of human civilization and sound produced using human technologies. Schafer was concerned with this investigation as well, however his interests have taken his practice into an area largely ecologically. 

The restructuring of human work and association was shaped by the technique of fragmentation that is the essence of machine technology. The essence of automation technology is the opposite. It is integral and decentralist, just as the machine was fragmentary, centralist, and superficial in its patterning of human relationships. The instance of the electric light may prove illuminating in this connection. The electric light is pure information. It is a medium without a message, as it were, unless it is used to spell out some verbal ad or name. This fact, characteristic of all media, means that the “content” of any medium is always another medium. (McLuhan). Marshall McLuhan’s dissemination (and projections) of technology and its functionality within the human context and constraint assisted in not only giving some contextual framing for my research but also helped me in further establishing the tone for “Metambient”—being that I was fearful that the curated results would come across as too heavy-handed. “Metambient” should feel generative in nature because ambient sound seems to feel that way given its many contributing components. The Medium is The Message felt a bit contrived when applying some of the theories to the contemporary digital software tools and technologies I was planning to use for the responsive environment to explore notions of interactivity, communication, sound and sensory perception—just as McLuhan did; only times and tools have changed somewhat.

Frances Dyson, author of the recent Sounding New Media: Immersion and Embodiment in the Arts and Culture, defines immersion as “a process or condition whereby the viewer becomes totally enveloped within and transformed by the ‘virtual environment’” (1977).  The specific point of interest and specialization for research within the study of this work specifically is immersion—by way of addressing the immateriality of digital media, while also referring to an ontological state, condition or environment.

Immateriality suggests materiality, which raised notions of media archeology. In Media Archaeology, by Jussi Parrikka, this study and concept is addressed. I began to look to other resources that could possibly be at the “root” or beginning of the breadcrumb trail for the concepts I was exploring, which is where many of the PDF readings I have collected from my time in the EDP program came into play, such as Myron W. Kreuger’s section on responsive environments (1977).

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

Adkins, Monty, and Ben Isaacs. “Proceedings of the International Computer Music

            Conference.”. The International Computer Music Association, n.d. Web. 10 Nov

             2013. <http://decibel.waapamusic.com/wp-

             content/uploads/2011/10/LVCHICMC11.pdf>.

Bey, Thomas, and William Bailey. “Microbionic:Radical electronic music & sound art in

          the 21st century.” . Belsona Books, n.d. Web. 10 Nov 2013.

Brend, Mark. The Sound of Tomorrow: How Electronic Music Was Smuggled into the

            Mainstream. 1st ed. London: Bloomsbury, 2012. Print.

Brett, . “Become a Morse Code Expert.” The Art of Manliness. N.p., 09 Oct 2008. Web.

            10 Nov 2013. <http://www.artofmanliness.com/2008/10/09/morse-code/>.

Chion, Michel. Film, a Sound Art (P. 118-243) (Film and Culture Series). New York: Columbia

            University Press, 2009. Print.

Demers, Joanna. Listening through the Noise: The Aesthetics of Experimental Electronic

           Music. 1st ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010. Print.

DeSantis, Dennis. “Notation: A Manifesto.” Dennis DeSantis Music for People and

           Machines. N.p., 1 Mar 2011. Web. 10 Nov 2013. 

Donovan, Nick. Digital Spaces. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Nov 2013.

          <http://cycling74.com/project/digital-spaces/>.

Hill, Caleb. Generation Z. 2003. Print.

"Interactivity." The Oxford Dictionary. Boston: Oxford University Press,    

            2013. Dictionary.com. Web. 19 Oct. 2013.

Houston, Lara. “Vjing, Technology and Intelligibility.”Vague Terrain Digital Art /

Harris, Jonathan and Kamvarm, Sep. “We Feel Fine” An Exploration of Human Emotion In Six Movements/

           Culture / Technology. N.p., 1 Mar 2008. Web. 10 Nov 2013.

            <http://vagueterrain.net/journal09/lara-houston/03>.

"Finding Longplayer." Longplayer. Artangel. Web. 10 Nov 2013.

            <http://longplayer.org/what/overview.php>.

Krueger, Myron W. 1977. Responsive environments. In: Krueger, Myron. Proceedings of

           the June 13-16, 1977, national computer conference. AFIPS ‘77. Dallas,

           Texas:ACM

"Lev Manovich Biography." The European Graduate School website. 2011. 01 March

             http://www.egs.edu/faculty/lev-manovich/biography/ Retrieved October 17, 2013

Manovich, Lev. The Language of New Media. 1st ed. Massachusetts: First MIT Press,

             2002. Print.

Marchand, Philip. Marshall McLuhan: The Medium And The Messenger. Massachusetts:

            First MIT Press, 1998. Print.
McLuhan, Marshall. Understanding Media. The Extensions of Man . Cambridge (Mass.)

            and London: MIT Press, 1964.

            http://beforebefore.net/80f/s11/media/mcluhan.pdf

Neuhaus, Max. “Modus Operandi .” Modus Operandi. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Nov 2013.

           <http://www.max-

           neuhaus.info/soundworks/vectors/passage/modusoperandi/modusoperandi.htm>.

Parikka, Juss. What is Media Archaeology. Malden: Polity Press, 2012. Print.

Vida, Andre, dir. André Vida on Score and Seek. 2013. Film. 10 Nov 2013.

           <http://vimeo.com/76746709>.

Vida, Andre. “Eyebeam.” Score and Seek. N.p., 13 Sep 2013. Web. 10 Nov 2013.

            <http://www.eyebeam.org/events/score-and-seek-closing-reception>.

Schafer, Murray. The Soundscape. (P. 51-56) Vermont: Destiny Books, 1977. Web.

              http://visa2p99.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/schafer_1.pdf.

 

 

 

 

Figure. 2.2

Essay #4; Dissemination

Ayinde Chong

Professor Weaver

Research Methods

19 October 2013

 

Throughout the research process for Metambient, the dissemination of material was constant due to the abundance of content that has been contributed to this particular area of study recently. Historically sound as media has been addressed in texts and used in creative works but numerous artists, engineers, and intellectuals. However over the last three decades through the availability of digital tools (both software and hardware based) that can be attained without extraction from a purchased computer or other electronic device these forms of addressing the sound medium have adapted and the level of sophistication has increased exponentially in respect to artistic work, defense research, augmented reality, artificial intelligence, and ecological studies being produced. These are just some the formats being explored for which to present new concepts, ideas, and innovations through the medium of sound technology.

When addressing “sound technologies” it is important to note the distinction between analogue and digital sound. Though both fall in the category of electronic media this distinction is significant because it denotes an important societal milestone in which an important technological occurrence took place. With the advent of digital sound which allowed a laser to read the information and translate that into your favorite song. This type of recording creates digital sound by storing the audio as numerical data. It is my belief that this technological advancement changed the way we made, heard, and are still presently hearing and making music and sound. With the ability to manipulate, store, as well as encode sound as numeric data then replicate it over and over again without degradation musicologists and the sound industry have opened up a whole new set of possibilities that have and are currently changing the way we hear sound and music. Allowing content to be more accessible through the use of digital tools, not only means greater potential for the mass production of the content but also the opportunity for remix, reappropriation of content, and creation and manipulation of sound data and content by those not likely not classically trained in music but apt in their ability use digital software designed for the manipulation of audio content.        

               With the growing societal and cultural awareness of the impact we have not only on the physical spaces in which we inhabit as well as the people in them we, the global village(understanding media:the extensions of man. Mcluhan 1964),  to use a term from coined by Mcluhan, when addressing how “electric media” are turning the world into one global network, changing our relationship with print, and extending our sensory capabilities. Marshall Mcluhan’s ideas again directly correlate to the concept behind this culminating work in that whether conscious of it or not the individuality of the sound and organized sound or music culture we have in place today is subject to the same outcome many would argue (as Mcluhan did) print culture was subject to, electronic interdependence (Marshall McLuhan McLuhan Studies (issue 2)). Electronic interdependence was a term Mcluhan used to describe a condition in which electronic media would replace visual culture with aural and oral culture. In these novel circumstances, humankind will move from individualism and fragmentation to a collective identity, with a “tribal base.” Man existed in a harmonious balance of the senses, perceiving the world equally through hearing, smell, touch, sight and taste. But technological innovations are extensions of human abilities and senses that alter this sensory balance — an alteration that, in turn, inexorably reshapes the society that created the technology. According to McLuhan, there have been three basic technological innovations: the invention of the phonetic alphabet, which jolted tribal man out of his sensory balance and gave dominance to the eye; the introduction of movable type in the 16th Century, which accelerated this process; and the invention of the telegraph in 1844, which heralded an electronics revolution that will ultimately retribalize man by restoring his sensory balance. (http://www.brainpickings.org/ Maria Popova)

            By way of these philosophies this culminating work seeks to engage the audience in a critical analysis of how we as a society, universal network, or global village are influencing the ways in which we perceive one another’s acoustic environment through the use of digital tools and technologies. As the DIY movement becomes evermore significant in the creation of content produced on the web and in our daily lives the space between one human being and another becomes increasingly determined by the aesthetic of the content produced how we choose to relate to it and what stimuli the content and therefore the technology is affecting. Research programs such as Eyebeam laboratory in New York City have also set out to investigate and innovate new projects based on the role sound plays in the spaces in which we exist, one such project that has similar conceptual threads to this work was Score and Seek by artist, composer, technologist and Eyebeam Honorary Resident, André Vida’s interactive installation Score and Seek, projects animated musical notations that respond to the performers as they move and perform in the space. Eyebeam whose ethos supports investigations like these in many fundamental ways such as offering creative residencies allowing artists, conceptual thinkers, and creative minds of all sorts exemplifies what I see as being my primary tool for gaining exposure and awareness to the ideas behind the sound work I am currently investigating by way of exhibitions and publicity through the programming and opportunities offered to artists working in the realm of new media.

 

 

Materials/Methods

Essay #3 Materials & Methods

 

Ayinde Chong

Professor Weaver

Research Methods

19 October 2013

 

Frances Dyson, author of the recent publication, Sounding New Media: Immersion and Embodiment in the Arts and Culture, defines the term immersion as “ a process or condition whereby the viewer becomes totally enveloped within and transformed by the “virtual environment””. This description of a mediated state in which the audience will be subjected to the content of this work denotes the need for distinction from other terms commonly used within the new media field such as, virtuality, telepresence, or artificial life. Though these terms are commonly used in the field and practice of new media the focus of this work specifically is intended for immersion by way of addressing the immateriality of digital media, while also referring to an ontological state, condition or environment.

Through installation one can gain direct insight into a spatial cognition of engaging sound. Without space there can be no concept of presence within an environment; furthermore there can be no possibility of an environment to provide experience that interactivity promises. Sound returns to the listener the same qualities that media mediates; the feeling of being here and now, of experiencing oneself as engulfed, enveloped, enmeshed, in short immersed in an environment. Sounds phenomenal characteristics such as its intangibility create a perceptual experience unique to itself and different from that of the other sensory apparatus.

 

Project Proposal

 

Concept (alternative idea/brainstorm)

Visual struggle

             Interactive media concept: this piece is purely based on dependency and the relationship the audience/humans in general have with their senses. The focuses specifically on vision. Reasons, for which are substantially more complex than they might seem in actuality. We use our eyes and visual apparatus’ to process data at various levels of sophistication and for a multitude of purposes that impact the ways in which humans interact, imagine, visualize, and most importantly generate for that particular sense.

With that said the piece it would be possible to structure the piece to be a simulation of the visual experience one would have when vision is obstructed by an element of blurring only the harder the audience tries to see through the blur the more their vision becomes obstructed forcing them to rely on their auditory senses. This approach characterizes the way in which I would like to translate my thoughts and ideas with the audience directly. Particularly bringing attention to the fact that there is a relationship to the space and mediascape you are traversing, navigating, perhaps even creating by interacting with the technology itself as “the User”. However the question remains how to provide solutions through the marriage of the senses (sight and sound) within the work for the viewer.  Which led me to an alternative format and structure for the work.

In order to create a responsive sonic experience that exemplifies my interest in the sonic media while maintaining accessibility to the concept for the audience or viewer I will be using a combination of video, sound files, and Maxmsp programming software to interpret the data responding to the audience entering the immersive installation environment. Within the space will be a shelving unit housing graphic scores printed on sheets of translucent material for participants to use as an additional set of notation to alter the sound or ambient noise being output as a response to the visual data present.

“Metambient” is a responsive sonic installation environment that uses graphic scores to create ambient sound similar to that of the acoustic ecology we can hear in the space in which the program is placed and set to begin recording. However as visitors and participants enter the space they become graphic scores themselves changing the default notational system and physical landscape of the space or acoustic ecology in turn changing the sonic output. Having the space interpreted as an averaged single color value and having the numeric data of that color value translated as low frequency sound sets an “ambient tone” for participants to interact with. Using a program that records what can be called the ambience of the space where the installation piece exists allows for not only a real time simulation of what the sound of the ambient sound in the space might sound like but also gives a point of reference for how physical and visual data can be interpreted and “sonified” or turned to sound in the space. Using illustrated graphic scores that have been printed on translucent sheets so as to become enmeshed with the form of the participant pulling it from the shelf exemplifies the use of this system of notation to actually compose music and harmony.  Maxmsp programming software has been used for experimentation with graphic notation on many inspiring because of its ability to synthesize and process visual data as numeric data in turn converting that data to sound. As seen here in this video: 

           

 

 

 

 

Using software like this I will be able to program the space to calculate and process the different data sets and values collected in space and output them as sound. 

Below is a preliminary sketch of what I imagine the layout of the space to look like.

 

Essay #3 Materials & Methods

 

Ayinde Chong

Professor Weaver

Research Methods

27 October 2013

 

Frances Dyson, author of the recent publication, Sounding New Media: Immersion and Embodiment in the Arts and Culture, defines the term immersion as “ a process or condition whereby the viewer becomes totally enveloped within and transformed by the “virtual environment””. This description of a mediated state in which the audience will be subjected to the content of this work denotes the need for distinction from other terms commonly used within the new media field such as, virtuality, telepresence, or artificial life. Though these terms are commonly used in the field and practice of new media the focus of this work specifically is intended for immersion by way of addressing the immateriality of digital media, while also referring to an ontological state, condition or environment.

Through installation one can gain direct insight into a spatial cognition of engaging sound. Without space there can be no concept of presence within an environment; furthermore there can be no possibility of an environment to provide experience that interactivity promises. Sound returns to the listener the same qualities that media mediates; the feeling of being here and now, of experiencing oneself as engulfed, enveloped, enmeshed, in short immersed in an environment. Sounds phenomenal characteristics such as its intangibility create a perceptual experience unique to itself and different from that of the other sensory apparatus.

 

Project Proposal

 

In order to create a responsive sonic experience that exemplifies my interest in the sonic media while maintaining accessibility to the concept for the audience or viewer I will be using a combination of video, sound files, and Maxmsp programming software to interpret the data responding to the audience entering the immersive installation environment. Within the space will be a shelving unit housing graphic scores printed on sheets of translucent material for participants to use as an additional set of notation to alter the sound or ambient noise being output as a response to the visual data present.

“Metambient” is a responsive sonic installation environment that uses graphic scores to create ambient sound similar to that of the acoustic ecology we can hear in the space in which the program is placed and set to begin recording. However as visitors and participants enter the space they become graphic scores themselves changing the default notational system and physical landscape of the space or acoustic ecology in turn changing the sonic output. Having the space interpreted as an averaged single color value and having the numeric data of that color value translated as low frequency sound sets an “ambient tone” for participants to interact with. Using a program that records what can be called the ambience of the space where the installation piece exists allows for not only a real time simulation of what the sound of the ambient sound in the space might sound like but also gives a point of reference for how physical and visual data can be interpreted and “sonified” or turned to sound in the space. Using illustrated graphic scores that have been printed on translucent sheets so as to become enmeshed with the form of the participant pulling it from the shelf exemplifies the use of this system of notation to actually compose music and harmony.  Maxmsp programming software has been used for experimentation with graphic notation on many inspiring because of its ability to synthesize and process visual data as numeric data in turn converting that data to sound. As seen here in this video: 

           

 

 

 

 

Using software like this I will be able to program the space to calculate and process the different data sets and values collected in space and output them as sound. 

Below is a preliminary sketch of what I imagine the layout of the space to look like.