Abelardo Gil-Fournier

Shared notes. My work here: abelardogfournier.org

Where They Create A Desert They Call It Peace, spanish version. Images of the process. On networks, erosion and the digital industries

— 1 week ago with 1 note
#tacitus  #color networks  #silicon  #new materialism  #desert 

An Atlas of Color Mediations is an interface to Google Image Search which provides simultaneously with two sets of results for each user’s query: images with color, displayed on the left side of the screen, and images in black and white on the right side. Images appear in the same order they appear in google search results.

Once you’ve discovered by yourself the issues of the interface itself -related with polysemy, proper nouns, etc- soon you will find some enlightening results.

Particularly, in the realm of material counterparts of color. “Gold”, “indigo”, “pigment”, “led”, “rgb” or “commodity” reveal a kind of dualist pattern. In these situations, color-in-objects work in the same deceptive way as screens within the virtual-real dualist fake: one-way interfaces designed to hide their material past while advertising unmaterial futures.

The interface itself is a combination of a python script that fetches the queries and a javascript that outputs the results.

— 2 months ago with 2 notes
#color  #database aesthetics  #cultural analytics  #new materialism  #2014 

A coltan collar is a device consisting of a motor-driven mechanism that ends in a moving head covered with sandpaper that slowly erodes a zinc plate painted in blue. The machine needs an internet connection to work, as it detects tweets sent from devices located in an geographical sector in central Africa, the one where most of the minerals needed for the hardware inside digital systems are extracted from, with barely no revenue for local economies but extremely hard working conditions.

Whenever a tweet sent from this area is detected, the machine performs a movement, transforming the digital act into the mechanical work of eroding the colored plate. This erosion recalls an extraction process of rare earth minerals, as it unveils under the bright blue colored surface its hidden mineral support.

While the production of digital hardware continues to depend on labour exploitation, the affective economies of social networks rely on the exploitation of data exchanged by users within their free online services. A coltan collar plays with the interweaving of these two different types of exploitation, as users tweeting from the selected region in central Africa are the workforce in a system that recalls the illegal mining labour embedded in every digital device. It is a domestic image-machine, whose presence brings to the everyday space this dual notion of exploitation diffused in digital systems.

Watch the video here: http://abelardogfournier.org/projects/a-coltan-collar

— 4 months ago with 2 notes
#image machine  #machine_malade  #machine  #coltan  #materiality  #matter  #labour  #color  #processing  #arduino 

[New work] Sanguine. Crowd colorations. Abelardo G. Fournier (2014)

The use of colored water cannons against participants in a demonstration is an odl police force technique increasingly widespread. Apart from dissolving the group, it aims to tag the individuals for subsequent identification. It is a primitive form of current digital tracking technologies, as the ones that have come to light parallel to the massive demonstrations of citizenship all around the world these last years.

The installations stems from this double nature of the digital: close to an image of a colored water cannon against riots, a vertical projection lightens an aerial photograph of a demonstration. Over it, a layer of fragments of colored petals cover the area occupied by the people in the picture. Their color, due to the projected light, is oscillatingly being desaturated. A hovering elliptical shadow, finally, is projected over the crowd.

The video can be accessed here.

— 4 months ago with 1 note
#color  #image machine  #installation 

Recommended read: The Trick That Makes Google’s Self-Driving Cars Work

In a densely 3d-scanned road network, vehicles act as mere browsers searching for the best path inside the database. Google’s AI formula appears as the key element in their self-driving cars solution: “Google has created a virtual world out of the streets their engineers have driven. They pre-load the [3D scene] data for the route into the car’s memory before it sets off, so that as it drives, the software knows what to expect.”

It’s all about crawler-philosophy, again: “Google wants to make the physical world legible to robots, just as it had to make the web legible to robots (or spiders, as they were once known) so that they could find what people wanted in the pre-Google Internet of yore. 

In fact, it might be better to stop calling what Google is doing mapping, and come up with a different verb to suggest the radical break they’ve made with previous ideas of maps. I’d say they’re crawling the world, meaning they’re making it legible and useful to computers.

— 4 months ago
#hybrid  #image machine 
Surveillance State. First prototype (2014)

Surveillance State. First prototype (2014)

— 5 months ago with 36 notes
#processing  #machine_malade 


Evolving Human Faces

Using face detection and a psuedo-genetic algorithm (not strictly GA because there is no crossover), software engineer Louis Brandy (who now works for Facebook) created a script that detects faces in grey-scale noise and selects the best results leading towards a more face-like image. 

Wow. A certainly more evolved algorithm than the one I used here which is at the base of the Facebots (Bots of Trust) project.

— 7 months ago with 17 notes

Judith Karcheter, collages:

1. The wire dancers, 2013

2. Die Namen der Mondkrater, 2011

— 7 months ago
#color networks  #collage 

To me, it seems that to begin charting a course forward, we have to develop an expanded definition of what we mean when we’re talking about “photography.” With a nod to Paul Virilio, I propose a simple definition that has far-reaching consequences: seeing machines.

Seeing machines is an expansive definition of photography. It is intended to encompass the myriad ways that not only humans use technology to “see” the world, but the ways machines see the world for other machines. (…) Crucially, the definition of photography I’m proposing here encompasses imaging devices (“cameras” broadly understood), the data (“images” being one possible manifestation of that data) they produce, and the seeing-practices with which they are enmeshed.

Seeing Machines II, by Trevor Paglen
— 7 months ago
#image machine  #cultural analytics  #photography 

Edward Steichen experiments with the dye inhibition process in 1939-1940. Images from the book Color Rush.

Synthetic color research after Vividness

— 7 months ago
#vividness  #color networks