Pixilerations

Interactive networked installation, custom software
wall text for an installation in the Sol Kofler Gallery as part of
pixilerations [v.7], Providence, RI, Sept 30-Oct 10, 2010

The Readers Project is a networked computational system that explores and visualizes processes of reading. The readers are programmed autonomous entities that read through texts in a variety of different ways, following traces of linguistic, typographic, and poetic structure. Each reader has a different way of 'seeing' the words and phrases that it encounters. These reading strategies are derived from particular aspects of human reading, or ways in which we might read—potentially or unconsciously. As the readers read, they also write, producing new texts from the words that they follow. You can read these new texts by watching the linked screens or by subscribing to a specific reader's traces on your own mobile device.

In this installation different screens provide two distinct perspectives on the text of Samuel Beckett's short prose piece, 'The Image.' The larger, aggregate view presents a typographic 'opening' as it is traversed by one or more of the readers. The touch-interface, at the podium, invites visitors to choose a specific reader to have 'focus' on the aggregate display and to initiate page-turns. The smaller, single-reader views, in colors corresponding to those on the aggregate display, show the paths chosen by specific readers moving through the text. Additionally, visitors to the gallery were invited to subscribe to individual readers on their laptops, web-enabled phones, or other mobile devices.