Intermedia I

Documentation and responses to various articles for my Intermedia I class, which I am enrolled in this Spring 2008 semester at the University of Iowa.

Performance Art:

To be read aloud in front of an audience:

DEAR SIR, 

I AM KABILA BOTA, THE FIRST SON OF DR. RICHARD
BOTA WHO WAS THE MINISTER OF FINANCE IN SIERRA
LEONE BUT WAS KILLED DURING THE CIVIL WAR. KNOWING
YOUR COUNTRY AS BEING ECONOMICALLY CONDUCIVE FOR
INVESTMENT AND YOUR PEOPLE AS TRANSPARENT AND
TRUSTWORTHY TO ENGAGE IN BUSINESS . 

MY MOTHER MRS. GRACE BOTA BROUGHT TO MY NOTICE THE
FACT THAT BEFORE MY FATHER'S DEATH, HE HAD THE SUM OF
TEN MILLION UNITED STATES DOLLARS
US$I0,000,000.00) WHICH HE KEPT AWAY FROM THE REBEL
LEADERS DURING THE COURSE OF THE WAR. THIS FUND WAS
SUPPOSED TO BE USED FOR A VERY IMPORTANT GOVERNMENT
PROJECT BEFORE THE OUTBREAK OF THE WAR. BUT WHEN THE
WAR BROKE OUT, THE REBEL LEADER DEMANDED THAT THIS
FUND BE GIVEN TO HIM, BUT MY FATHER WHO TRIED TO MAKE
HIM UNDERSTAND THAT THIS FUND HAD BEEN MOVED OUT OF
THE COUNTRY GOT KILLED BECAUSE OF WAR. 

MY MOTHER AS THE ONLY PERSON WHO KNOWS ABOUT THIS FUND
QUICKLY MADE AN ARRANGEMENT WITH A RED CROSS RELIEF
WORKER WHO USED HIS OFFICIAL VAN TO MOVE THIS MONEY TO
LUNGI AIR PORT IN FREETOWN, ALTHOUGH HE DID NOT KNOW
THE REAL CONTENT OF THE BOXES. PRESENTLY, THIS FUND
HAS BEEN DEPOSITED WITH A SAFE RELIABLE SECURITY COMPANY.
THE MONEY WAS KEPT IN A CUSTOM BONDED WAREHOUSE WITH
THE SECURITY COMPANY.I WAS ADVICE BY MY MOTHER TO CONTACT
SOMEBODY WHO WILL CLAMING THE FUND FROM THE SECURITY
COMPANY,AND THAT IS WHY I DESIDED TO CONTACT YOU
AND ASK FOR YOUR ASSISTANTCE FOR FUTHER TRANSFER
OF THE FUND TO YOUR COUNTRY. 

MY MOTHER SIAD THAT UNTILL THE FUND GETS INTO YOUR
COUNTRY AS GOD MAY WANT IT BECUOSE IN HIM WE TRUST
THERE WE AGREED ON THE TYPE OF BUSINESS TO INVEST.
THE ONLY ASSISTANCE WE NEED FROM YOU WHICH I BELIEVE
YOU WOULD DO FOR US ARE AS FOLLOWS . 

1. MAKEING AN IMMEDIATE ARRANGEMENT TO TAKE THE FUND AT THE SECURITY COMPANY.
2. MAKEING AN IMMEDIATE ARRANGMENT WERE(A HOUSE) WE WILL STAY IN YOUR COUNTRY
AFTER THE DEAL.
3. LOOKING FOR A GOOD BUSINESS WE WILL DO WITH THE FUND IN YOUR COUNTRY BEFOR THEN. 

AS SOON AS YOU AGREED TO HELP US IN DOING THAT I WILL SEND YOU THE HOLE
DOCUMENT RELACTING TO THAT,AND INFORM THE SECURTY COMPANY ABOUT YOU
SO THAT THEY WILL TELL YOU HOW THE FUND WILL GETS TO YOU. 

CONFIDENTIAL AND MUST BE TREATED WITH UTMOST SECRECY.YOURS SINCERELY, 

KABILA BOTA. 

NOTE; Please you can still reply from my fax number if you sent mail could not get trough 873762868142
NOTE TOO ; that you will dial your country international dialing access code followed by my fax number e.g. 873762868142

Intermedia Open House (April 18, 2008)

With this being my first and only time I had demonstrated or had anything to display for the Intermedia Open House, I was not sure what to expect. I didn’t get neither of the rooms I had requested, so I had to make-do with the one that was vicariously chosen for me.

Setup did take some time, however. I hadn’t been feeling well since noon, so I felt as if I was trudging through mud. The plan was to do most of the work the Wednesday before, but the room I was stuck-with was not available during our usual class-time. I arrived Friday with my bundle of tech-gear around 4pm, found Mark NeuCollins and proceeded to survey my little niche. There were four other Intermedia display’s in the room; only one of them had anything setup at all. I wasn’t entirely sure how much room I would need, so I guess-timated the dimensions. (More on the setup process to come).

The Open House went well. I took the following pictures during the show. I didn’t get out of my particular room much of the night, except to go outside and grab some fresh air. My muscles ached and my head was throbbing as if I’d been clubbed with a 1963 Stratocaster. Here are some of the photos:

Processing 1.0 [Beta]

For my University of Iowa Intermedia I class, I have been determining exactly what my final project will be. After attending several lectures, I have decided that my final presentation will have SOMETHING to do with Processing 1.0 [Beta].

Processing 1.0 [Beta]For those that don’t know much about programming languages or art, Processing 1.0 is a visual designers dream… especially if programming is not your bag. In a nut shell, Processing 1.0 is a Java overlay. Think of all the visual classes or objects you wanted to design, but simply didn’t have the time. You slugged your way through the incredibly difficult task of creating Java screensavers and GUI interfaces, all the while saying to yourself, “Man, there has to be a better way.”

Well, along come some brilliant people at MIT who loved Java’s object oriented programming style and write-once methodology, but were more interested in creating visually stunning objects and classes. But, like you, thought Java sucked in that regard.

I am currently reading Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists.

It’s a good read and wonderful tutorial for those interested in both graphic arts and computer science.

Below is a sample of one of the Processing classes I’ve been developing for this project. The idea for the code came from Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists. I am working with the Ess class to do FFT functions for incoming microphone audio as well. Below is one of the ‘classes’ I’m creating for my project.

class Ring {
float x, y; // x & y position of the ellipse
float diameter; // current diameter
float c;
boolean on = false; // current dispostion (on or off)
float previous; // previous circle diameter
float xMax; // width of the screen
float yMax; // height of the screen
float slope; // direction the ring travels from the center
float theta;
float hyp;
// this method initiates the ellipse at a specific location on the screen
// and turns the ellipse 'on'. The default diamter of the ellips is 20
// xpos - floating point between 0 and the width of the screen
// ypos - floating point betweeen 0 and the height of the screen
void start(float xpos, float ypos, float xWidth, float yHeight) {
x = xpos;
y = ypos;
theta = atan2( x, y ); // angle at which the circle moves away from top left
hyp = y / sin( theta ); // the radius or distance of the circle from top left
xMax = xWidth; // width of the screen
yMax = yHeight; // height of the screen
on = true;
diameter = 20;
previous = 0; // not used, but useful if needing to keep the previous diameter of the ellipse
}
// this method assigns a new value to the diameter of the Ring
// we also keep track of the previous diameter, but for not it is not used
void grow(float newDiam) {
previous = diameter;
diameter = newDiam;
}
// this method shades the ellipse a specific grayscale shade
// tone - shoule be an integer between 0 and 255
void display( int tone ) {
if (on == true) {
noFill();
strokeWeight( (int)abs(diameter - previous) / 7 ); // scale the stroke according to the difference
stroke( tone, 127 ); // medium opacity (allows rings to be seen through other rings)
ellipse(x, y, diameter, diameter);
}
}
void move() {
hyp = hyp + 2;
// generate new x & y coordinates
x = hyp * cos( theta );
y = hyp * sin( theta );
// determine if the circle has drifted off the screen
// if so, the replace in a new position
if ( x < 0 || x > xMax || y < 0 || y > yMax ) {
x = random(0,width/10);
y = random(0,height/10);
theta = atan2( x, y );
hyp = y / sin( theta );
}
}
// this method returns the disposition of the ellipse. Whether the
// ellipse is on or off
boolean getDisposition() {
return on;
}
}

Intermedia Time-Based Media Project:

Back in the day, producing video or other time-based media was an expensive activity. Video camera’s cost over $10,000 and the necessary hardware / software were for the elite. At present, anyone can create their own video. Just look at YouTube. For a fraction of the typical cost, anybody can become the next John Hughes or Steven Spielberg.

Although the tools are readily available for cheap, their is a lack of instructions or ‘how-to’ guides on what exactly makes a good film or video. For this project, we were to record 15 minutes of video using a miniDV camcorder, import the clips into Final Cut Pro, and edit the footage into something cohesive.

For me, this gave me the opportunity to create a music-video for one of the tunes I created several years ago. The actual music is available for download at www.acidplanet.com: just look for the artist: Agent Collateral Damage. I spent my time recording footage of passing cars along Burlington Ave. here in Iowa City.

The concept of the music-video is rather simple: locate clips that represent specific elements of the music score and sync those video elements to the musical score. Basically, paint the musical canvas with video clips, instead of sound snippets. The following is what resulted:

YouTube Preview Image

 

What is a book?

We spent few weeks asking the question, “What is a book?” Oddly enough, it’s rather difficult to iron it down without somebody mentioning an item that breaks the current definition. Our project was to build a ‘book’ that may or may not be interpreted as a book. We spent a lot of time arguing for and against a PDA (personal data assistant) as a possible book. Here’s what I came up with:

What I Remember From College: by Dennis Lambing

This is actually a prototype of what I had originally intended. The basic concept was to take sections from various books, assignments and notes that I have accumulated throughout my time here at the University of Iowa. I would then cut them to the size of a small hand-book, jumble them into a pile, gather them together; binding them with glue, staples and paper clips. Unfortunately, I couldn’t force myself to butcher many of my books, so what was assembled is not complete.

Intermedia ‘found art': How to make ‘999 Pieces’

Step 1: Begin by selecting an appropriate puzzle. There are many factors that determine exactly what the ‘right’ puzzle will be: How important is the puzzle you are using? Has it been put together before? Will friends or family become disappointed if the puzzle will no longer be of use? How big are the pieces? What are the dimensions of the puzzle? What do the colors and textures represent to you? How does it make you feel?

These, you will have to determine for yourself. Spend as much time as you need to search your feelings. In the end, you will know which puzzle to use.

The ONLY requirement is: The puzzle must contain 1000 pieces. If the puzzle is new and unopened, then it will suffice to take the manufacturer’s word for it. It is OK to assume that a puzzle manufacturing company would never lie to you. If the puzzle has been opened and / or assembled, then care must be made to assure beyond a reasonable doubt, that the puzzle STILL contains the original 1000 pieces.

  1. Place all puzzle pieces in the box with which they are accustomed. Care must be taken to assure that the original box is used. If (and only if) in the the hazardous event that the original puzzle box is simply beyond repair, a second non-standard box may be used. Every effort must be made to repair the original puzzle box, however. Repeat Step 1 until satisfied.
  2. At random, select a puzzle piece from the puzzle.
  3. Using the help of an assistant, have them choose a second puzzle piece from the puzzle.
  4. Using your favorite adhesive, glue the two selected puzzle pieces. Take care in gluing the puzzle pieces face-to-face. It is perfectly acceptable to glue the two pieces together in a random fashion. Choose an orientation that pleases you. This is no time to be stingy.
  5. Once the glue dries to an acceptable level, replace the ‘forever adhered’ puzzle piece back into the box.
  6. Shake the box.
  7. Remove the lid from the puzzle box.
  8. Situate the (now opened) puzzle box 3-4 feet above the table (or other final viewing area).
  9. Release the box.
  10. Let gravity take over and do its thing.
  11. If the final resting place for the puzzle pieces and puzzle do not provide a visually stimulating array, replace the puzzle pieces back into the box and repeat steps 8 through 11 until satisfied.
  12. Invite friends and other ‘artsy’ com-padres over for wine and cheese. Allow them to bask in your creativity. Do NOT give them the URL to this project.