Paper presentation: “Qualified self: verdad y subjetividad en la visualización del Quantified Self”

Laia Blasco presents “Qualified self: verdad y subjetividad en la visualización del Quantified Self” at Interface politics II, After post-truth. Gredits, Barcelona.

Quantified Self is today a technical reality that structures datasets of all kinds of interfaces that are created to establish, build and transform the relationship with the self, data and society itself. In a “datified” world, data visualization challenges traditional representation systems opening up a vast world of analytical and graphic opportunities. As user interfaces that are, data visualizations are artificial devices that transport cultural messages in a great variety of forms and supports; Furthermore, they are never neutral mechanisms of data transmission, but rather they affect the messages, providing a model of the world of their own, a logical and ideological scheme. The fascination with Big Data and the creation of increasingly sophisticated user interfaces pave the way for the proliferation of diverse mutations in the semiotic production of truth. A truth that springs up on the false transparency of the quantitative representation of the world and of the self. This paper analyzes the implications of the Quantified Self and its visualizations, showing its mechanisms, deceptions and fallacies behind its apparent neutrality, and demonstrating its qualitative quality inscribed in the underlying logics.

 

Liquid film montage. A critical study of interactive documentary tools

Liquid film montage. A critical study of interactive documentary tools

Quelic Berga participates at the Interface Polítics II congres with the paper: “Liquid film montage. A critical study of interactive documentary tools”. The congres will take place on November 28, 29 and 30, 2018 at the BAU (Barcelona).

In this paper we present a comparative study among the main interactive documentary tools and we reflect upon their adoption by industry, academia and society. The core aim is to show, analyze and compare the creative implications of different metaphors that articulate each of these audiovisual tools. And at the same time, to explore how these different approaches to audiovisual montage result in the preconfiguration and enhancement of different narrative grammars and regimes of truth.

Through this comparative study of tools we focus on this emerging format [Guifreu], also called i-doc or webdoc, to understand and reflect on its impact in the definition and transformation of contemporary audiovisuals.

To approach the subject we first set up a framework that takes in consideration different perspectives of the media related studies; We begin by pointing briefly to some of the most significant theoretical and conceptual contributions that have marked our study, especially from materialist media studies [Fuller], software studies [Manovich] and humanities computing [Murray].

We distinguish and focus specifically on interactive documentaries softwares among other audiovisual tools and artefacts found in the computing environment. Within this type ofsoftwares, we focus on contemporary programs for authorship of interactive documentaries: Korsakow [1] developed in Germany by Florian Thalhofer and Matt Soar, the French tool Klynt [2] by the Honkytonk Films team, Eko [3], developed after Interlude [4], by the Israeli-American team of Yoni Bloch and finally the PlayFilm[5] platform developed in Valencia. The objects of study of this article are the multimedia tools of authorship and their interfaces. It is beyond this study to observe in detail their resulting objects; interactive documentaries.

Apart from analyzing the graphical user interface, we compile other types of data surrounding the artefacts, considering not only the tool itself, but the cultural ecosystem in where it unfolds [Bertelsen & Soren]. The result of the analyzes of those four softwares allows us to develop a comparative table considering several characteristics: we analyze the constructs, models and methods provided, the use of the vocabulary of each program, the distribution and design of the interfaces, the functionalities and features, the technologies used and finally, the most frequent and specific uses of each tool.

We close the article reflecting on the impact that contemporary audiovisual montages that are liquid or mutable, and that might adapt and modify themselves in relation to data and/or the final user might have important consequences on the construction of the notion of reality. We end up opening questions and observations about the authorship, the audiovisual market, the forms of consumption and the forms of preservation of these resulting audiovisual devices if possible.

Keywords: Webdocs, Interactive Documentary, i-doc, constructs, metaphors, UX, interface criticism.

 

 

Round Table on Arts and Artificial Intelligence. GUNi International Conference at Cosmocaixa Museum

This GUNi International Conference aims to be an international meeting to debate on the role of the humanities, and the interrelation between humanities, science and technology in the 21st Century with a special focus on Higher Education. The main objective of the Conference is to open a worldwide debate on the current role of humanities in the social, academic and scientific areas and on their importance to boost a more equitable, more responsible and more democratic society. The event has gathered 160 attendees from 22 countries and from diverse areas of knowledge and fields (education, research, public institutions, organizations) in order to debate on the role of the humanities in the world. The Conference was held on the 19th to 20th November 2018 at the CosmoCaixa Museum in Barcelona.

 

Pau Alsina at the Round Table. More photos here.

Poster about the UOC’s Arts Degree

Laia Blasco-Soplon makes one of the posters of the GUNi International Conference.

This GUNi International Conference aims to be an international meeting to debate on the role of the humanities, and the interrelation between humanities, science and technology in the 21st Century with a special focus on Higher Education. The main objective of the Conference is to open a worldwide debate on the current role of humanities in the social, academic and scientific areas and on their importance to boost a more equitable, more responsible and more democratic society. The event has gathered 160 attendees from 22 countries and from diverse areas of knowledge and fields (education, research, public institutions, organizations) in order to debate on the role of the humanities in the world. The Conference was held on the 19th to 20th November 2018 at the CosmoCaixa Museum in Barcelona.

Desafíos de la virtualización de la enseñanza de las Artes: el Grado en Artes de la UOC

Laia Blasco-Soplon and Aida Sánchez de Serdio make this presentation in the framework of the international seminar “Arte, educación y virtualidad” at the Museo Nacional de Colombia, Universidad Santo Tomás (Bogotá)

In this presentation we propose a reflection on the teachings of arts at a higher level and, more specifically, on what its virtualization supposes, taken as a case the Arts Degree of the Open University of Catalonia (UOC). In the first place, the challenges and possibilities of the virtualization of artistic education in general are pointed out, such as the difficulty of virtually conveying the material and copresential nature of teaching in arts, the need to maintain a relationship that is both individualized and relational. in an environment that tends towards massification, and the opportunity that this environment offers to develop a contemporary and reflective approach to media and artistic languages. Secondly, we focus on some aspects and characteristics of both the UOC and the Degree in Arts, showing its curricular mesh and some of its virtual classrooms, and highlighting some of the challenges that its implementation has involved, such as the need for a greater visual dimension of the teaching environments, of overcoming the analog-digital dichotomy, or of generating multidirectional communications, among others. Finally, we share some reflections and questions about which we want to continue working in the future.

 

“A Companion to the Gangster Film” (Wiley-Blackwell, 2018).

 

Ana Rodríguez-Granell participates in this book with the chapter When Criticism Meets Gangster Films: The Spiv Cycle as Oppositional Aesthetics in Postwar Britain

 

This paper focuses on an overlooked period of film history between the brilliant 1930s and the film modernism to come in the late 1950s, a time when critical and militant manifestations in British cinema were co-opted into the institutional narrative of quality film. Following World War II and the rise of Labour’s social democracy, realism became the bedrock of British national cinema as part of the country’s cultural rebuilding. In this context, and given the efforts invested in the war and the institutionalisation of realism exemplified by Millions Like Us (Sidney Gilliat & Frank Launder, 1943), what had been a period of political exaltation gave way to a dismembering of the avant-garde practices and the critical militant documentalism that had represented the working class. Faced with official cinematographic discourses that tried to temper the radical spirit of the pre-war years, calls came for narratives that expressed civil responsibility, civic sense, compassion and rectitude, or ‘hopeful and clear-eyed’ narratives. This paper seeks to examine how gangster and spiv films provide a subaltern representation of the British working class. It will analyse the political economy of post-war British gangster films, popular cinema and certain sectors of the industry as a forum for challenging institutional aesthetics. The influences from the 1930s, oppositional discourse and the sparks of modernity in gangster films such as Waterloo Road (Sidney Gilliat, 1944), They Made Me a Fugitive (Alberto Cavalcanti, 1947), and It Always Rains on Sunday (Robert Hamer, 1947) will be examined. This will be done to determine if this kind of film, which led to sub-genres of social criticism, may be deemed a vehicle for vernacular modernism.

“The artwork is a digital file, yes”

Pau Waelder publishes “The artwork is a digital file, yes” (Daata Editions).

I have been invited by David Gryn, director of Daata Editions, to write a text for the Foreword section on the platform. The text addresses the preconceptions related to collecting digital art and it particular the type of artworks sold by Daata, which are digital files that the buyer can download with a certificate of authenticity. Below is an excerpt:

When considering how to collect digital art, we come across two preconceptions: what an artwork must be and what digital files are worth. First, it is commonly assumed that an artwork is an object with unique attributes, original, and irreplaceable. The object routinely goes from the artist’s studio to the gallery, where it is acquired by a collector. There is no doubt that it is always the same object that trades hands, and it is finally the collector who decides where the artwork is placed and who has access to it. Conceptual and performance art has challenged this notion again and again, but the artwork always finds its way into the market and the collector’s home in the form of a more or less stable object. Thus, if an artwork (a) is not an object, (b) can be copied, (c) can be accessed or experienced beyond the control of its owner(s), and/or (c) requires a computer, software and display to be at all perceivable, some may find it “difficult,” “challenging,” or even not worth collecting. This relates to the second preconception.

 

 

Estamos buscando un/a candidato/a para un doctorado industrial

Estamos buscando un/a candidato/a de doctorado industrial

Puesto vacante de doctorado industrial en Barcelona, España, para un estudiante  con conocimientos en visión artificial y técnicas de Machine Learning para la mejora de experiencias de Realidad Virtual (RV)

Read the offer in English

Descripción

La Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) y Inflight VR IBERIA SL invitan candidatos a aplicar a la oferta de doctorando industrial en el área de ingeniería de software. El/la candidata/a llevará a cabo investigación interdisciplinaria con aplicación de escenarios reales. En concreto, el/la candidato/a investigará sobre los campos de visión artificial, aprendizaje automatizado (Machine Learning), interacción persona-ordenador (HCI) y realidad virtual con el objetivo de diseñar y desarrollar nuevos algoritmos y técnicas para mejorar la experiencia de RV.

Buscamos a un/a candidato/a con iniciativa y ambición que cuente con formación en Ciencias de la Computación, preferiblemente con algo de experiencia en visión artificial, inteligencia artificial, aprendizaje automatizado o matemáticas aplicadas.

Se valorará positivamente experiencia con tecnologías de realidad virtual e interacción persona-ordenador.

Responsabilidades:

– Diseñar y desarrollar nuevos algoritmos de fusión multisensor para accionar nuestras aplicaciones  de captura de movimiento actuales y futuras
– Entender los requisitos de las aplicaciones y traducirlos en algoritmos complejos y de última tecnología.
– Identificar las nuevas tendencias de investigación relacionadas con fusión de sensores, captura de movimiento, optimización y  aprendizaje automatizado (Machine Learning).
– Trabajar en proyectos de investigación, proponiendo soluciones de primera clase a nivel mundial.
– Aplicar las técnicas de interacción persona-ordenador (ej.: interfaz inteligente de usuario, sistemas cognitivos o interacción computacional) para mejorar la experiencia de usuario  de las aplicaciones finales.

Habilidades y experiencia

– Se requiere máster en Visión Artificial, Ciencias Computacionales, Matemáticas aplicadas, o equivalentes.
– Excelente expediente académico.
– Excelentes habilidades de programación con java, C# o lenguajes similares.
– Habilidad para entender, diseñar e implementar algoritmos complejos de manera eficiente y correcta..
– Sólida base matemática/analítica, facilidad para la resolución de problemas y flexibilidad para adquirir nuevos conocimientos.
– Buenas habilidades comunicativas en inglés, tanto a nivel hablado como escrito.

Interesados, contacten con:

Elena Kokkinara: elena.kokkinara @ inflight-vr.com
Pierre Bourdin:  pbourdin @ uoc.edu

Leticia Castro entrevista Susanna Tesconi en la diaria educación: “La tecnología y la pedagogía crítica van de la mano”

Susanna Tesconi profesora de la UOC e investigadora del grupo DARTS fue entrevistada en Montevideo en Uruguay, por Leticia Castro en una conferencia sobre educación en la que participó. Pueden leer la entrevista completa en “la diaria educación“:

https://educacion.ladiaria.com.uy/articulo/2018/10/susanna-tesconi-la-tecnologia-y-la-pedagogia-critica-van-de-la-mano/

Susanna Tesconi
Dra. Susanna Tesconi (Foto: Pablo Vignali)

Susanna Tesconi es diseñadora de entornos educativos y parte del movimiento Edumaker.

Twitter: @AuntySue