Network Noise Drift


Event Text

Re-posted from transmidialie

From May to the end of August 2013 John Wild worked with Tatiana Bazzichelli, at transmediale, on a project to map the reSource network of independent technology based art/hackerspaces in the city of Berlin.

The mapping project rapidly developed a Schizoid split between a practical Cartesian rationalism and a Psychogeographic abstraction that was resolved by the development of two distinct approaches to mapping the network.

1) Cartesian mapping :: The first approach was to develop a functional Android Mobile Phone application with the aimed of increasing the visibility of the independent art/hacker spaces within the city. The App provides an overview of the city with a clear and navigable map of the location of each space. To achieve this, GPS data and map tiles were sourced from the OpenStreetMap initiative. OpenStreetMap is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free geospatial data and to providing geospatial data for anyone to use and share. The map was overlaid with location markers of the resource network venues.  Taping on a space marker reveals more information about the venue and a link to its web presence. See the download instructions here.

2) Network Noise Drift :: A ‘network is a plurality of (organic and artificial) beings, of humans and machines who perform common actions thanks to procedures that make possible their interconnection and interoperation’ [1] The second approach to mapping the network was to explore and make audible the usually invisible non-human aspects of the networks technological infrastructure through field recordings of the machine processes that enable the social network. A GSM sniffer, electromagnetic induction coils, similar to those used in guitar pickups, and a broad spectrum RF receiver where used within each space to record the electromagnetic imprints created by the spaces networked devices. WLAN, Cell phone signals, Bluetooth devices, DECT cordless phone base stations, and the internal processors of laptops were recorded through the practice of electromagnetic audio drifting. A technique of allowing yourself to be guided by the invisible intensities, textures, and ambiences of a spaces specific electromagnetic geography.
These raw field recordings where then composed into a sonic abstractions of each space. Using an android mobile phone application and openStreetMaps these compositions where geo-spatially sited at specific locations on a map of Berlin and only accessible by physically going to the locations within the City.

This sonic abstraction of the reSource network was presented by John Wild at reSource006, held at Kunstraum Kreuzberg/Bethanien, as a performativity walk. John guided the walkers through the streets of Berlin passing through the varied ambiences and nodes of the sonified and abstracted map of the reSource network of technology based art and hacker spaces.

[1] Franco Berardi, 2011, ‘Swarm & Disruption’ quoted in Tatiana Bazzichelli, Networked Disruption. Rethinking oppositions in Art, Hacktivism and the Business of Social Networking, Aarhus University, Digital Aesthetics Research Center, Aarhus, 2013.