Friday, November 5, 2010

Drumbeat day 2

less exhausted and a bit less excited tonight - which is probably good, all things considered.

spent the bulk of the day with the digital storytellers. the goal was, head out into the raval and tell a story digitally. most people did admirable projects like documenting the immigrant experience, but i'm shy of that sort of thing in a context i don't know well - i don't even speak catalan! i don't know how to tell anti-gentrification rhetoric from anti-immigrant rhetoric! i wanted to find some way of getting at the gendered ways we walk through cities, and somehow my iphone's mic wasn't working, and i wanted to upload on the fly - so i made a quick tumblr, forgetting for a moment that tumblr is resolutely linear in time, so the whole thing is backwards.

here's my quick story: you can see how it serves as a stub for other possibilities. you could:
  • incorporate movement, find a way (video??) to capture the start-stop-loiter pace of this kind of walking
  • map these consumer forays
  • play this route (meander? derive?) off against a "proper" city map/recommended walking tour: i think of lines on google maps, against which these forays splay off in unruly ways
  • use images here like a database (caitlin's idea) and connect across city spaces - which is super interesting if you shop small local designers, as i like to, since you won't repeat chanel online etc.
  • add voices - audio - to reflect the many forms of consciousness you embody at the same time: i want this, i hate this, i hate myself for wanting it, but it's so beautiful, but shouldn't you be reading The Economist, etc
  • insert audio on a map: for instance, a happy chord for every store that thrills you and a dischord for every disappointment - the seeming indie that turns out to be a chain, shoes made of plastic, knock-off desigual, a leather shop w/o bags
  • QR-mark your preferred shops so as to make a secret society of underground shoppers, maybe across continents.
ok, enough on that. i had one hour; i did a tumblr!

good talk and great projects in that group: could not believe what people did in an hour. esp the guy from NY (ok, ok, a documentary producer for some 20 years now - obviously his stuff was going to be good!). lots of emphasis on video, although the he-said/she-said twitter story that @jacksondevious and @iamjessklein did was also interesting. a single hashtag would have made it cohere, but what was interesting was the interruptions from overseas and other friends saying things like, "show us a picture [of the market you're describing]." really opens up the narrative.

tried to hit the wikipedia event in the afternoon but it was clearly too late; that conversation was well along.

which brings me to a few overall comments:
  1. love love love the facilitating. no audience Q&A, no long talks, no reading. here is some stuff on that.
  2. agree with the critiques about how english it was. see jon beasley-murray's, for one. worse, although i was shocked when i first arrived (secret confession: i was worried EVERYTHING would be in spanish/catalan, and that i wouldn't understand a word of it), i'd grown used to it by day two. honestly don't know what you'd do otherwise, though: there were people here from germany, italy, hungary, spain, france - and that's just the linguistic groups i know of. is english the de facto language of the internet?
  3. the academy is not totally broken. yesterday i was all about storming it; today i felt like, hey, look, we do a lot of nuanced critical thinking there and that's good. i was missing it by today. it was good to be around that again. (i swear i will remember that!)
  4. don't understand the passion for badges. if you want accreditation, why reinvent the wheel: plenty of institutions accredit, it's one of the things they do really well. but why a badge? or, let me put it this way (which is a bit different from JBM): how do you know that you won't turn into the big bad evil other? how will your boutique practices not produce exactly the kind of mindless stamping you loathe in others, once these badges are operating at an economy of scale? if you're all P2PU and DIY-U, then be that. no halfsies.
  5. HASTAC folks are brilliant.
  6. hack ethic of working is inspirational. can't we write this way?
  7. agree that it was hard to have the "move among plenty of options" and "bear down to work with folks" ethos (ethoses?) operating at once. also agree open-web and open-ed folks didn't work together enough. though thrilled to see anne balsamo's project taken up by mozilla!
  8. i am not a 20-something coder/hacker/tech - which is why i am home blogging about the whole thing (uh, before i forget) and not at the party, which started, let's see, about half an hour ago.
it's midnight now and i'm to bed.


100% said...


Casey said...

you must be so tired. but looks like you've been hopping from places, you might need some Anti Bacterial/Anti Biotic
as you get along.