Archive for the ‘ documentary ’ Category

Dymaxion Self

November was busy. Needless to say, I am yet another apologetic blogger to use the good ol’ “sorry I haven’t posted” line… However, Postself headquarters is busting with lots of self-reflexive activity as the Fbook interface continues to provide many opportunities for dialogue and critique. For those of you who have digital profiles meshed within FB, you may want to catch up on the insightful interaction that occurs in our satellite location > http://www.facebook.com/postself < where relevant links and videos are being shared by fellow Postselfers.

Although I’ve been consumed with many tasks, I continue to live up to my manifesto on a daily basis. In fact, I am now finding that I tend to use Fbook as a strange kind of coping mechanism that contrasts what I am faced with on my other screen. At home, I work with a double screen set-up and I often go back and forth to Fbook when confronted with difficult work, the same way I venture to the kitchen for snacks. I also continue to maintain and archive my Postself “list” of anything and everything to revisit and expand upon later. Just this past week, several topics have made the blogosphere and entered into our FB portal discussions — namely, the cartoon profile campaigns that have popped up and emotional reactions to the new FB layout changes — plenty food for thought.

Speaking of archived lists….for some time now, I’ve been wanting to post about our relationship to Facebook as a digital archive — an archived database that is connected to and integrated within all of the other networked social media applications we use, such as Flickr, Twitter, Vimeo, Youtube, Tumblr, etc. For instance, I will often find myself ‘sharing’ something just to have the link made readily available in my profile and just in case one of my friends posts something in response that triggers an idea or another resource to follow up on. Because it seems I’m on Fbook so much, I tend to search through my archived links rather than venturing over to my delicious account.

This networked language we use today may be new, but the act of archiving one’s personal life is not. The internet, however, provides a multilinear process for us to use, consisting of interconnections to different locations for self-storage. A couple of years ago there was an art exhibit developed in San Francisco called “Self Storage,” which was inspired by the historical precedent of the Dymaxion Chronofile, a system that Buckminster Fuller devised to chronicle his life. I began thinking more about Fuller a month ago while preparing a paper for a conference. Then, just like anything significant and meant to be contemplated, his name kept popping up all over the place. I think Bucky Fuller was extremely far ahead of his time, with interests and behaviours quite relevant for our current cultural moment. It has been said that his life is the most documented human life in history…

From Stanford’s R. Buckminster Fuller Archive:

The centerpiece of the collection, in many ways, is the Dymaxion Chronofile, an exhaustive journal of Fuller’s trajectory from 1920 until his death in 1983. Fuller had been collecting clippings and artifacts since he was a child. But in 1917, he began a formal chronological file which he would later call the Dymaxion Chronofile. The Chronofile was a vast scrapbook that included copies of all his incoming and outgoing correspondence, newspaper clippings, notes and sketches, and even dry cleaning bills. Initially, the Chronofile was bound into handsome leather-backed volumes. In later years, to save space and expenses, the Chronofile was simply stored in boxes. By the end of his life, this exhaustive “lab notebook” of his life’s experiment amounted to 270 linear feet.

Fuller intended for the Chronofile to be a case study of his life in context, in which his daily activities were presented in parallel with developments in technology and society. In it, he at once traced the evolution of his own thoughts, relationships, and business ventures; and documented new inventions, trends, and technologies that were emerging on the broader level.

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There’s already applications being produced that allow for FB interactions to be archived in books. Which makes me wonder how we might “selfpost” differently if we knew there was the potential of our digital identities to be preserved not only on paper but bound within a book.

* thanks to Postselfer Marianela for this Youtube clip

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PostPostself…

I’ve been considering the development of a PostPostself portal, a spinoff of sorts — a reflection of the making process of Postself. It would consist of documentation and reflection on the process of becoming a reflective networked self (as opposed to being a non-reflective networked self). I would explore the challenges, struggles, and rewards of contemplating one’s actions and thoughts while making a project that engages with Facebook. This is very meta….yet perhaps fitting for our complex times.

[*Note: I tend to lean towards other writers who think the “post” is over with….we are posted out. So perhaps I would go with the title of Superself or Alterself, in reference to the other prefixes put forth. For now, because of the double-meaning implied with my use of “post” I will stick with it.]

For my posts on Postself, I keep a text file on my desktop where I “scribble” ideas down as they come to me – how I feel about my relationship with Fbook, what it makes me think about, etc. I date these ideas so that I can refer to them in a chronological manner when looking back on my journey. I then revisit them when I find the time to publish posts to the blog. Some of these comments extend beyond how my relation to Selfpost, and move toward an “unfolding of insights” (Irwin, 2003) about the larger network culture we exist with/in.

Self-reflexivity can be a challenge. Of course Postself is fun and rewarding, but it is quite isolating as well. You know when you have just finished reading a really great book or watching a really great film, and nobody you talk with seems to share the same enthusiasm? Immersing in Continue reading

I feel like a nag…

images: top left, top right, bottom left, bottom right

Social networks are great for raising awareness about social and political causes. Since joining Fbook almost 4 months ago, I feel more knowledgeable about global and environmental concerns that may not have caught my attention (or, at least, as much of my attention) as before. This is due to certain Friends involvement with these particular causes…Friends who might be interested in the same issues as myself and/or Friends who have very different interests from my own. Some critics argue that this kind of online dialogue does nothing to actually help solve problems, yet others argue that it can lead to change…especially when directed towards organizations that are responsible for making important decisions.

Perhaps my teacher and researcher selves take over in these moments of open dialogue…sharing resources, providing links for further information, communicating the importance of attending to these issues, instigating debate to probe the ideas raised…not looking for agreement at all, just looking for some insightful chit chat. But I’m afraid that external selves who might not perceive this window of opportunity on Facebook will instead perceive me as a NAG. I don’t mean to disrupt the escapist FB posting flow – mindless sharing of retro music videos, funny pictures of cats, cute close-ups of babies, unbelievable moments of self-exposure on youtube – no, don’t get me wrong….I succumb to these pastimes just as much as everyone else. I guess that’s why I try to downplay my posts that relate to social and political issues, so it doesn’t sound like I’m lecturing….”I’m not a political activist but…” (aka – it’s ultimately up to you whether you read this or not but it is something you should know about….).

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from Within the Flickering web

“I feel this visual design (of television) has been carried over to the world wide web where the entire animated computer screen has become one image in itself, pulling its users in all sorts of directions analogous to the aesthetics of channel surfing.” (see Interrupting the Program; May, 2000)

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I now immerse my self in the web aesthetics of the social network to be exposed to the collective experience. I then work within the structure of this blog, rather than separating myself from the artistic restrictions of the online system. I choose to embrace and utilize the technical limitations of the program, perhaps to encourage more critical awareness of the network itself…from within rather than from the outside looking in. I move constantly back and forth between the giving of myself over to the process of becoming (Munster, 2001) and the self/critical reflection I pursue. There is constant danger of losing my self to the flickering (Hayles, 1993) rhythm of this powerful digital medium….

LA (Lurkers Anonymous)

Profile Bio:

Hi, my name is Heidi and I’m a Facebook lurker. I now vow to participate as my self (https://postself.wordpress.com).~ April 5, 2010

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Introduction: Selfpost | Postself

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Postself is one component to the art project Selfpost | Postself.
I will use this blog to document and reflect upon my relationship to the online networks that I exist within, specifically the network of all social networks – Facebook. Although I became very aware of Facebook when it first emerged on the internet, I have been observing the behaviors of its subjects and analyzing social implications from afar. To fully understand the implications Facebook has on one’s sense of self, and the impact of digital space and time on the human psyche, I have decided to enter this space as myself; I have decided to “selfpost.” Expecting myself to emerge and transform throughout this experience, I intend to document this experience here. I intend to examine the “postself,” and to explore questions about self/selves after Facebook….how selves respond to the digital medium that surrounds us in contemporary culture…a philosophy of the self in an age of social networks.
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Read the project Manifesto here >

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