Mobile Projection Becomes Activists' Tool in NYC Occupy Wall Street Protests

Democracy Now! has a feature on the use of mobile projection in Occupy Wall Street. Projections here are simple: factoids are blown up to big-building size, highlighting economic inequities. But the results do something even signs and megaphones may be unable to do, which is to reach a large audience of passers-by without in fact having to disturb almost any physical space. Mobile projection is of course nothing new, and a topic we cover regularly here, but it becomes visible to a broader audience when involved in a hot-button political action like this. Article and transcript: Projectionists Light Up New …

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Mobile Projection Becomes Activists’ Tool in NYC Occupy Wall Street Protests

Democracy Now! has a feature on the use of mobile projection in Occupy Wall Street. Projections here are simple: factoids are blown up to big-building size, highlighting economic inequities. But the results do something even signs and megaphones may be unable to do, which is to reach a large audience of passers-by without in fact having to disturb almost any physical space. Mobile projection is of course nothing new, and a topic we cover regularly here, but it becomes visible to a broader audience when involved in a hot-button political action like this. Article and transcript: Projectionists Light Up New …

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Projection Mapping Comes to Mongolia

Look out, flat 4:3 and 16:9 rectangles. Projection mapping – the simple but potentially-expressive technique of using projected light on more complex three-dimensional surfaces – appears to be here to stay. And it’s even reached Mongolia. Reader Joe Catchpole writes to let us know about his project, combining Ableton Live with VJ app Modul8, Mac tool Quartz Composer, and others, plus the key ingredient — MadMapper, the 3D projection mapping software. More details:

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What Visual Software Readers Use: Some Clear Favorites, Plenty of Diversity, in Census Results

Two clear frontrunner apps, among a number of superb, popular choices, are pictured here. At top, Resolume Avenue in action, in a photo (CC-BY-SA) Colombia-based artist Otto Nassar. At bottom, Deborah Johnson looks on as Modul8 glows onscreen, in a photo by Jaymis Loveday for CDM. (See that interview on her work with Sufjan Stevens – and watch for a new chapter soon.) Live visuals and VJing are growing and maturing faster than ever, but even as projectors beam stunning visuals into performances and installations, there’s surprisingly little light shed on the community behind the work. Earlier this summer, CDM …

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Sonification: Thermonuclear Testing, Made into Music, 1945-1998

Visualization often wins out over sonification when it comes to making data clear. But sound has one key advantage: it can make time and scale apparent, by tapping directly into our perception of forward time. Japanese artist Isao Hashimoto, born well into the Nuclear Age in 1959, uses that property to chilling effect. The sounds in “1945-1998” are made still more unsettling in their rendering as tranquil, musical sounds rather than explosions. Quietly, World War III is waged not in wartime, but in the 2053 nuclear explosions that erupt mainly in thermonuclear tests (led, ironically, by the United States). This …

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Ask the Readers: Best Visualist Cities

Tokyo, home to the audiovisual scene and birthplace of Motion Dive, must be at least one candidate. Photo: Joi Ito. It’s time for a little geographical smackdown. Opening my inbox today, I found this query from Andrew Zukoski: If you were going to travel to 3 or 4 cities outside of north america to look at visualist practice, where would you go? Good question. So, let’s hear it – enough of the “grass is greener mentality,” where are you that has a terrific scene? Now, CDMotion co-editor-at-large Jaymis Loveday and I have been all the way to Perth, Australia, supposedly …

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Bleeping Good Fun: Videos from Handmade Music; Your Part of the World

It’s easy – and partly appropriate – to appreciate the bleeps and blips of homemade and bent circuits as noise-making insanity. But as Peter Edwards (casperelectronics) and E-Squared walked us through their creations at the April installment of Handmade Music, it was clear that compositional exploration was at the heart of the work. Edwards talked about trying to be freer with sound and get away from techno, using handmade creations that helped him shake musical habits. E-Squared described studying the intricacies of classic Roland drum machine and synth circuits, then re-imagining them in fantastic new creations that allowed them to …

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Are Economic Concerns Likely to Impact Your Music Tech Purchases?

Politics and economics are well beyond the scope of this site and ridiculously far out of my area of expertise. But at what point does economic confidence start to impact music technology? That’s a question I know colleagues and industry figures are starting to wonder about. Here is an entirely non-scientific “temperature test” — even if these feelings may shift over time. Feel free to answer from wherever you live in the world. [Direct poll link, in case the embed isn’t working]

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Join in on Crazy Video Projects in LA, Worldwide: Stuntman Jump, High Noon Sunshine

Machine Project is the wonderful gallery / multimedia educational center and maker of happenings in Los Angeles. They’re on a roll with Big Ideas this month, so I thought I’d pass them along — aside from participating, they may inspire similar stunts in your hometown. (Just make sure you hire professionals if they’re going to do something dangerous, like jump out of a window. And don’t stare into the sun.) First up: Los Angeleans, you have a chance to film a Matrix-style effect with a stunt man jumping out a window:

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From STEIM’s Artistic Director: Why STEIM Matters, and Thanks

From the STEIM Concert Blog, which gives some sense of who has been playing STEIM. Takuro Maizuta Lippit, aka dj sniff, writes in thanks for the international outpouring of support for the STEIM music and art research center in Amsterdam, which faces potentially losing government funding. Some readers raised some questions about why STEIM is asking for support, and what the institution’s significance is — a reasonable question — and Taku provides some background here: What makes STEIM an unique place is that it emphasizes on supporting independent artists with experimental and adventurous ideas in the live electronic art world. …

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