Sunday, February 18, 2007

Snapshot of New York (Still-Life or Time-Trip?)

I am just back from three days of icy deep freeze and wind chill factors permeating the commercial heart of New York.

Is that Wall Street?

No, it's Times Square.

Was it a money-making trip?

Yes and no. It was a conference (no cash in pocket, but residuals potentially forthcoming).

Do I have any pictures?

Yes. This one:

I just developed it.

But how?

First, let's examine it in the context of web cam performance art. Web cam performance art is a great way to play with video tableau. I'm making a feature-length "film" on that subject by focusing the HDV cam on a fictional web cam persona who plays (with) herself 24 X 7 (does that sound like someone you know?).

But there's more to it than that.

Set aside web cam performance art for a moment. Mobile phone image capturing, especially for the nomadic net artist who experientially drifts through variable scenes of writing as a way of knowing, has less to do with tableau and more to do with plateau.

In this case, I am the cyberceptive attractor, strangely cognizant while improvising, pivoting with my handheld while receiving the signals from the traffic below:

Look familiar?

This is New York City as I see it, 11:02 PM, Mountain Standard Time.

But why is it MST and not EST (Eastern Standard Time)? Did I forget to change my watch?

No, I don't wear a watch.

Then I must have forgotten to change the time zone on my mobile phone, yes?

Well, no, not that either.

What I have done is networked my surveillance eyes back to Times Square using an Internet Earth Cam. My surveillance eyes are the ones I use to obsess over the images just now breaking on the shores of my hactivist thought as I peer over and through and within the network. I have actually "taken the picture" with my Snapz Pro software running on my net connected iPhone.

All of a sudden, this experience of capturing an image of New York from a remote location where I use the network to peer into the distant present while my body still resonates with the psychosocial buzzing of the very recent past (My So-Called Trip to New York) changes the meaning of the term peer-to-peer network.

The image capture from the Earth Cam is REAL.

How do I know it's REAL?

It sends a (deep, icy) chill up my spine.

Have I manipulated the image?


How can I not manipulate the image?

Just by scripting this blog entry I have totally manipulated all of the networked data that informs the capturing of this image.

In fact, the image never had a chance.

To begin with, I have changed the size.


Yes, but only in theory.

In many ways, I am still in New York.

Or, maybe I would be better off saying "New York is still in me."

(And yet, tomorrow morning, nestled in the Colorado Rockies, I will further explore my "experiment in the technique of awakening" ...)

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