Review of Blue Velvet in Vectors

Goldberg, David Theo and Stefka Hristova. «Blue Velvet: Re-dressing New Orleans in Katrina’s Wake» Vectors 3.1 (2007) <http://vectors.usc.edu/projects/index.php?project=82>

Blue Velvet is a linear article arguing that the disaster in New Orleans during hurricane Katrina was a socially produce one, as the affected area was designated for poor black people and had been neglected for over a century, a development made even worse by neoliberalism and the Iraq war. Continue reading

Review of “Wegzeit”

Offenhuber, Dietmar. “Wegzeit: The geometry of relative distance”. Vectors 1.2 (2006) <http://vectors.usc.edu/projects/index.php?project=64>

Regular maps show objective distances and spatial relations. But we also experience spaces in relative measures, such as the time it will take you to get somewhere. «Wegzeit» is a short presentation of six different experimental maps of Los Angeles. Continue reading

Review of “Objects of Media Studies”

Hastie, Amelie (curator). «Objects of Media Studies». Vectors 2.1 (2006). <http://vectors.usc.edu/projects/index.php?project=65> 28 July, 2014.

This is a curated collection of texts by eight writers exploring the materiality of one object each. The nodes can be read in three ways: By author, by curator’s narrative, or free browsing. Continue reading

Review of “Public Secrets”

Daniel, Sharon. “Public Secrets”. Vectors 2.2 (2007). <http://vectors.usc.edu/projects/index.php?project=57>

“Public Secrets” is a collection (what Manovich would call a ‘database’) of bits of sound recordings of interviews with inmates in a California women’s prison. The bits are linked together by various means, but the main listening experience is one of random browsing, assembling a mosaique out of sound bites ranging from 45 seconds to 3 minutes. The piece was recognized as an Official Honoree in the Activism category by the 11th Webby awards. Continue reading

Review of “Programmed Visions” in Vectors

Chun, Wendy Hui Kyong. “Programmed Visions”. Vectors 3.1 (2007). < http://vectors.usc.edu/issues/5/programmedvisions/> 17 February, 2014.

Wendy Hui Kyong Chun has created an archive of text fragments on racism. Rather than a scholarly article, this is an exhibition, but not a very curated one. Text fragments are precented to the user at random, with so few interface elements it is very difficult to read. Vectors’ editor claim that  “In the interplay between “form” and “content,” we are meant to understand that our desires to standardize the world and make it interoperable are not innocent.” (Introduction). Unfortunately for me, I am not smart enough to understand this. I spent two frustrating hours with this text to fulfil my duties for this research project, and I wonder if anyone else except the authors and editor has ever read more of it. Below is an account of my reading experience. Continue reading