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Newsticker, link list, time machine: HOLO.mg/stream logs emerging trajectories in art, science, technology, and culture––every day
Andrés Burbano
Different Machines
In his investigation of the emergence of Latin American media technologies, the Colombian artist and scholar constructs a “historiographical and theoretical framework for understanding the work of creators who have been geographically and historically marginalized.”
“Oversight boards and ethics teams at big tech companies have always been a fig leaf. Their purpose is to convince regulators that the companies can regulate themselves. That’s it.”
– American writer Joanne McNeil, critiquing Silicon Valley’s ethics shell game, as tech leaders call for an AI moratorium. “Good work can be done and good people can be hired,” McNeil continues. “Doesn’t change the purpose and ultimate goals of these departments.”

Amsterdam’s NEMO Science Museum unveils a giant meatball made from cultivated woolly mammoth flesh. Created to spark conversations around sustainable meat alternatives, food engineers from the Australian cultured meat company Vow inserted sheep cells with the mammoth myoglobin gene. “When it comes to meat, myoglobin is responsible for the aroma, the colour and the taste,” James Ryall, Vow’s Chief Scientific Officer explains. Where Vow’s mammoth DNA sequence had gaps, African elephant DNA was spliced in for completion.

“Starting April 15th, only white nationalists with 30 followers will be in ‘For You’ recommendations.”
Eve 6 band leader and Buzzfeed columnist Max Collins, responding to Elon Musk’s announcement of Twitter Blue favouritism. Cited in Mashable reporter Max Binder’s analysis of the social media company’s flailing subscription game, Collin’s tweet rings true: Half of Twitter Blue users have less than 1,000 followers and comprise “far right wing accounts, cryptocurrency scammers, and hardcore Elon Musk supporters.”
“People think that everything lasts forever on the internet but it falls apart. Without real caretaking and maintenance, everything you make is destined to disappear.”
DIS Magazine’s Lauren Boyle, on the struggle to keep online content presentable. “Three years is about the shelf life of any piece—before you start to get some kind of digital rot,” adds New ModelsCaroline Busta, in conversation about the publication and curatorial collective Boyle co-founded in 2010.

ZKM Karlsruhe opens “Renaissance 3.0,” a major celebration of “new alliances of art and science in the 21st century.” The last exhibition curated by ZKM’s late director Peter Weibel brings together 35 artistic positions by Tega Brain, James Bridle, Anna Dumitriu, Tomás Saraceno, Saša Spačal, and many others, that “open up multidisciplinary knowledge bases” and “new fields of research.” A visualization of such entanglements offers Wissensfeld (2023, image), Weibel’s final artistic collaboration.

“Libraries are more than the customer service departments for corporate database products. For democracy to thrive at global scale, libraries must be able to sustain their historic role in society—owning, preserving, and lending books.”
– Internet Archive founder Brewster Kahle, responding to a federal judge siding with four major publishers in a lawsuit against the nonprofit digital library over its Controlled Digital Lending (CDL) program. “This ruling is a blow for libraries, readers, and authors,” states Kahle, “and we plan to appeal it.”

Resurfacing fabled 18th century partially-dissected wax figures used in the study of anatomy, “Cere Anatomiche” opens at Fondazione Prada Milan, presenting four anatomical venuses and 72 drawings from the La Specola collection alongside a companion film by David Cronenberg. Entitled Four Unloved Women, Adrift on a Purposeless Sea, Experience the Ecstasy of Dissection, the Canadian director’s short dwells on how the figures’ uncanny “body language and facial expressions do not display pain or agony.”

“Grids are emblematic of the array—the fundamental data structure around which all computer hardware and software is built. So, the grid is a natural visual form for computer–based digital art, and the aesthetic implications of this are far-reaching.”
– Generative artist Tyler Hobbs, on the enduring technological relevance of (the often grid-based works of) Agnes Martin. Reflecting on the late American painter in advance of his show “QQL: Analogs,” Hobbes enthuses “her work has taught me to take a closer look.”

Foregrounding daylight and circadian rhythms in an era of deleterious screen time, “Lighten Up! On Biology and Time” opens at EPFL Pavillions in Lausanne (CH). Featured are works both evocative and therapeutic, “to remind us of the necessity of regular light exposure for a healthy life,” from artists including Kirell Benzi, Olafur Eliasson, and Anna Ridler. Helga Schmid presents a full-on sleep pod (image: Circadian Dreams, 2022), in which visitors laze and soak up LED lighting calibrated to optimize natural body phases.

“If TurboTax is Dark UI, Tax Heaven 3000 is Pink UI, the nightcore of tax software.”
MSCHF co-founder Dan Greenberg, on Tax Heaven 3000 (image, 2023), a forthcoming dating simulator that allows Americans to court Iris, “a cheerful and easygoing girl who is oddly interested in your personal finances,” while doing their taxes
“Wanna talk about ‘PC music?’ It’s one cello sample and a computer, baby.”
100 gecs’ Dylan Brady and Laura Les, enthusing about the origins of the THX deep note, the characterful chord that sounds before many motion pictures. Gushing about getting clearance to use it to kickoff their new album, Les describes the soundmark as “beautiful and terrifying.”
The Posthumanist 2
Rhythms / Rhythmen
The sophomore issue of the English and German periodical of more-than-human perspectives, featuring art, poetry, and essays from contributors including Delal Seker Bulut, Gertrude Gibbons, Eryk Salvaggio, Helene Schulze, and Elvia Wilk.

Eliot Higgins, Founder and Creative Director of the investigative journalism group Bellingcat, rattles Twitter with a series of deepfakes depicting Donald Trump’s arrest. Created using the latest version of Midjourney in anticipation of the rumoured bust, the AI-generated images show dramatic (and dramatically convincing) scenes of the former U.S. president wrangling cops and being taken in. In the real world, the Manhattan grand jury investigating Trump has yet to vote on an indictment.

“Just as quarantining helped slow the spread of the virus and prevent a sharp spike in cases that could have overwhelmed hospitals’ capacity, investing more in safety would slow the development of AI and prevent a sharp spike in progress that could overwhelm society’s capacity to adapt.”
Vox senior reporter Sigal Samuel, making the case for “flattening the curve” of AI progress

Generative art NFT platform fxhash announces a new feature that “enables collectors to collaborate in the creative process.” Entitled fx(params), the functionality allows artists to designate certain parameters (e.g. colour, geometry, velocity) within their code as adjustable for primary market buyers. Instead of leaving an NFT’s appearance entirely to chance, the collector can tweak the artist’s system to their liking before minting their copy (image: fx(params) interface for 1mpo$ter’s Smash, 2023).

“Without novel human artworks to populate new datasets, AI systems will, over time, lose touch with a kind of ground truth. Might the next version of DALL-E be forced to cannibalize its predecessor?”
– Artist and writer K Allado-McDowell, exploring possible side effects of the AI revolution. “To adapt, artists must imagine new approaches that subvert, advance or corrupt these new systems,” writes Allado-McDowell. “In the 21st century, art will not be the exclusive domain of humans or machines but a practice of weaving together different forms of intelligence.”

Honouring his Mexican heritage and the Latinx community in San Francisco, “TECH-MECHS,” a survey of Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s interactive installations opens at Gray Area. Featured are lyrical works like Pulse Topology (2021, image), in which 3000 dangling LEDs blink the varying rhythms of visitors’ recorded heartbeats, as well as bleaker perspectives on mortality and self-sovereignty, such as Sway (2016), an upside-down noose that moves from side to side “every time ICE arrests a person, like a metronome.”

“MySpace had neither the edge of a New York City digital media startup. Nor the loose libertarian spirit of Silicon Valley.”
– American writer Joanne McNeil, recalling a more innocent era of social media. In the first episode of Main Accounts, her new podcast on the rise and fall of MySpace in the 2000s, McNeil engages journalists Julie Angwin and Taylor Lorenz about the social network’s spyware-adjacent origins and its infamous 2005 sale to News Corp.
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