Interactive Media

Amazing new netart projects at Tate Online

The Dumpster – a visualisation of break up blog posts! Hilarious, sad and very voyeuristic.

The other two are launching later this year.

Check it out.

Digital storytelling

Mashable on Current.TV

An more sceptical take on Current.TV and user-generated/co-created content.

AV Related General Interactive Media Mobile Social networking

marc prensky in Australia Mar 3, 2006

2006 National Seminars – Transforming Learning through ICT
Seminar 1 – Delivering 21 st Century tools, learning and skills

This is the first in a series of two seminars for educational leaders involved in technology and learning through the use of the Internet.

Keynote speaker: Marc Prensky, the founder of Games2train, designer and builder of over 50 software games, and author of the critically acclaimed Digital Game-Based Learning and the upcoming Don’t Bother Me, Mom – I’m Learning!.

Marc’s professional focus has been on reinventing the learning process, combining the motivation of video games and other highly engaging activities with the content of education and business. He is considered one of the world’s leading experts on the connection between games and learning.

Interactive Media

Multi-input touch screen

Multi-touch interaction experiement.

Social networking

Social networking obsessions

On my non-work blog I’ve been posting quite a bit about a very very cool social networking-meets-music web application called

In a nutshell what and its music player plugins do is track every bit of music that you listen to on your computer or iPod. It uploads the track name and artist name to its central server. Then it links you up with other people who listen to similar things.

One of the benefits of is the ability to track what you and others listen to, and of course the ability to browse fellow users playlists. Not what they say they are playing but what they are playing. (If you want to see what I am listening to . . . you can)

You also get ‘recommendations’ on other artists, tracks and users that you might like to check out. A bit like Amazon’s book recommendations – but based entirely on what you are doing not just what you are buying. (Amazon’s recommendations are always screwed up when you buy a gift for someone for example)

Individuals also get a ‘radio’ station link that lets them listen to streaming music related to what they like and already play.

But it starts getting really exciting when people join together and share tastes. Users can form ‘groups’ around shared interests.

Groups also have an automatically generated ‘radio’ station that plays licensed tracks based on the collective musical tastes of the group. Its in its early days but my group is already starting to build a collection of pretty relevant stuff – and as more small labels join the specialist radio will only improve. (Already I have heard a track from an artist on the Fonal label on it!)

The possibilities here are only just being explored.

This is really hot because it is so seamless and its addictive.

Be warned.

Giv and I have been thinking about how we could apply the same principles of ‘taste’ and ‘action’ to cultural institutions and hopefully you’ll be seeing something along these lines developed as a key part of how the upcoming Design Hub project we are creating works.

Stay tuned.


Electronic Swatchbook Tagging

If you have an hour of spare time that you’d like to donate to us then drop me an email – sebc [at] phm [dot] gov [dot] au.

I’m looking for a few people to help us complete the tagging of the Electronic Swatchbook swatches.

The main thing we’re trying to get done is the COLOUR search. Obviously the swatches are made up of a lot of different colours and real time image analysis tools just don’t cut it. So we implemented a tagging feature where users can ‘describe’ the swatches. And a lot of people have done so.

But its not enough.

We need your help to finish them off. And we’ve built a quick and dirty bulk tagging interface so volunteers can zip through the swatches in order tagging the ones that are currently untagged.


New blog categories

Regular contributors and readers . . . . we have two new categories for posts –

Digital storytelling

If there are other categories you’d like me to create for posts then please add them in the comments.

Remember that in Web 2.0 world, tagging is everything.

Interactive Media

Helen Stuckey on ACMIpark / ruminations on Soundbyte

Very interesting piece on the ACMIpark installation / virtual environment by ACMI games curator Helen Stuckey.

In placing such corporate constraint on the design of acmipark, lost too was the opportunity to identify with a community. Due to ACMI’s stipulations it was closed to the electronic music, stencil art and open source communities to which its creators, selectparks, belonged. By requiring a high–end PC, broadband and technical sophistication to access, it was also beyond the reach of most causal visitors. Further complicating access was the fact that due to budget constraints it was not rigorously tested across a range of hardware or as user friendly as commercial game releases. In addition the work was understood and supported by ACMI in terms of more traditional non–networked installation artwork and an audience of online users was never specifically sought.

Pete and I should really go back and do a similar evaluation of Soundbyte (2001-2004). Soundbyte was a site where the music and video created in youth centres and in secondary schools could be hosted and shared. We had a great team working on its development in 2001/2. Kenny Sabir authored a new version of his online jamming tool DASE specifically for us, incorporating a whole host of new features at our request based on our experience with users at SoundHouse lab at the Powerhouse Museum. The site then pushed this tool for use within schools and ended up trialling it with Musica Viva. In the end we had created a much celebrated resource that never really reached its potential.

The main problem was that users had no real reason to return to the site. If they had produced music or video as part of a project at school a drop in centre, or at the Museum, then they would look at it once or twice, show their family and that was it. There was no incentive for them to browse other people’s works – as we had expected they might. I remember that had a similar problem.

If we’d done the project a few years later we could have built it with a social networking engine under the hood which would have made it a lot more ‘sticky’ for users. Now, I’d add an auto podcast creator that would go through related productions and build a subscribable radio module, and a way of tagging uploaded content so users could browse ‘clouds’ of related uploads. Also, we would have insisted a little more insistently that DASE be developed as a open source project.

I did look at the ccMixter engine early last year, and there are plenty of other options these days. If we can organise some funding we’ll revive the ideas of Soundbyte project again.

AV Related Digital storytelling Interactive Media

ACMI First Person / Digital Storytelling Conference (part two)

Day Two highlights included the comprehensive presentation by the capture wales crew in the first session and the truly wonderful local work being carried out in regional australia by Malcolm McKinnon.

Capture Wales

The BBC supported capture wales project is now quite mature, having recently passed the milestone point at which more content comes in unsolicited than is produced through the project workshops. This represents a significant statement in terms of demand and sustainability. I believe it would be difficult to reproduce this success without the weight and resources of BBC Wales delivering expertise, production and distribution power, however, it remains at its core, a community centred practise. It’s clearly stated purpose is encouraging and acknowledging diverse voices. It provides a fascinating model aiming to change the balance of power between ther broadcaster and the broadcasted.

The capture walse crew have developed their own approaches based on the Berkeley model which is made quite explicit at

Malcolm is really a community artist who spends significant time in rural and regional communities esp Vic and Sth Aus and has also worked with numerous cultural institutions including many museums. He also works with communities including indigenous to produce beautiful films – again, first person narratives.

Malcolm’s presentation explored notions of places that talk, charting unsignposted local knowledge, artefacts as powerful triggers for untapping residues of memory, and opening up the many narratives which define the history of any place. Through his community filmmaking he seeks to bring forward ‘authentic, idiosyncratic stories’, to acknowledge and celebrate the past in a truthful and useful way. Very excellent.

Check out the MP3 audio files. The best bits (IMHO) of the conference only made available in this place.

AV Related Digital storytelling Interactive Media

ACMI / First Person Conference Audio

Pete has kindly uploaded his audio recordings of some of the sessions.

Feb 3 – 600pm Joe Lambert
Feb 4 – 1115 am John Hartley
Feb 4 – 1115am Ana Serrano
Feb 5 – 900am Capture Wales (fixed)
Feb 5 – 1115am Malcolm McKinnon