De artista (Brett Ian Balogh) para os outros

encontrei uma entrevista num blog de um artista que vai usar o open hardware nas suas instalações… e recolhi este seu comentário

What do you see as the best and worst technology-driven trends emerging in art and design?

By far the best technology-driven trend I am aware of is the free and open-source software and hardware initiatives and the maker communities that have been gaining popularity recently. Technology is a powerful tool for enabling people to enrich their lives, but if the price tag keeps it out of reach of the general public or restrictive rights on ideas and processes exclude others from learning or contributing, the utility and worth of this technology is diminished. The current quality of tools available to the average person are equalling if not surpassing those used by institutions that have influence over many of our day-to-day concerns. There’s enormous power in the ability to re-imagine one’s own environment, and with the advent of open source 3D modeling and geospatial software, it’s possible to redesign one’s own neighborhood and view it in the world theater. In terms of other open hardware and software initiatives, if you don’t have the money to buy a pre- built device? No problem, they provide kits or even schematics so you can build your own from scratch. Want to change something? No problem, they provide all the source code as well so that you can program your own variant of the project. Consumers of these technologies are not merely users of pre-packaged functionality, but are active participants in the development of the products they purchase.

Projects such as Rep-Rap and Makerbot are revolutionizing manufacturing technologies by providing relatively inexpensive 3D printers and CNC machines to the average consumer. Hopefully soon we’ll see average kitchens outfitted with microwave-sized fabbers along side the food processor and toaster that can print you a replacement doorknob or a pint glass from plastic… The Arduino physical computing platform is another notable example of a successful and far-reaching open source initiative. Artists, designers and makers of all types can program a microcontroller to run an interactive art installation, to control responsive architectures or to even sequence the lights in your holiday display. The possibilities are numerous, and if you’re not sure how to do something, there’s a vast user-base who are more than happy to lend a hand. What it all comes down to is the democratization of technology, putting new tools and ideas in the hands of the public, and building a community of people who are willing to learn from and teach others.

As for the worst technological trends, I’m rather concerned by current issues of digital rights management (DRM), net neutrality, file-sharing and unauthorized/unwarranted surveillance, just to name a few. These are certainly interesting and problematic times, and there are no clear-cut answers to these difficult issues. My hope is that the thoughtful and responsible use of technology, including new media artworks that address these concerns can bring awareness of and sensitivity to these issues to the public so that we can make better-informed decisions for our future.

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