Arab religious skeptics online, mapping the public debate over net neutrality, experiencing the Harvard Depository, and more... in this week's Buzz.
In 1787, British philosopher and social reformer Jeremy Bentham conceived of the panopticon, a ring of cells observed by a central watchtower, as a labor-saving device for those in authority. In French philosopher Michel Foucault's groundbreaking 1975 study, Discipline and Punish, the panopticon became a metaphor to describe the creeping effects of personalized surveillance as a means for ever-finer mechanisms of control.
Years later, the available tools of scrutiny, supervision, and discipline are far more capable and insidious than Foucault dreamed, and yet less effective than Bentham hoped. Shopping malls, container ports, terrorist holding cells, and social networks all bristle with cameras, sensors, and trackers. But, crucially, they are also rife with resistance and prime opportunities for revolution.
In this talk authors Emily Horne -- a creator of the webcomic A Softer World -- and Tim Maly -- writer and Fellow at Harvard’s metaLAB -- discuss their new book The Inspection House, and paint a stark, vivid portrait of our contemporary surveillance state and its opponents.
Two hundred years ago, artists had the monopoly on image making. Now, every parade or disaster is accompanied by ten thousand twitpics.
In a world where mobile technology has made images instantaneous and ubiquitous, what does visual art have left to say?
Drawing on her experiences doing illustrated journalism around Guantanamo Bay and the Greek economic crisis, Molly Crabapple -- called “Occupy’s greatest artist” by Rolling Stone -- speaks about the role of art in a world captured by a million cameras.
Curarium is a collection of collections, an “animated archive,” designed to serve as a model for crowdsourcing annotation, curation, and augmentation of works within and beyond their respective collections. Curarium aims to construct sharable, media-rich stories and elaborate arguments about individual items as well as groups of items within a corpora.
The metaLab's Jeffrey Schnapp, Matthew Battles, and Pablo Barría Urenda describe the Curarium, and its first project to ingest Villa I Tatti’s Homeless Paintings of the Italian Renaissance collection, and build engagement with a wider audience to identify, classify, describe, and analyze the objects in the collection.
Say the idea is to re-awaken our feelings for plants even at our hyper-networked speed — do we want digital tools to do the re-wiring or are we convinced their auto-brightness and push notifications divert us from the living, breathing nonhuman sensorium?
Kyle Parry — a Researcher at metaLAB and a PhD student in Film and Visual Studies and Critical Media Practice at Harvard — initiates a conversation along these lines by way of a discussion of Digital Ecologies, metaLAB's work-in-progress collaboration with Harvard's Arnold Arboretum.