Future Places 2008: Workshops

This is a historical archive of information about Future Places 2008. Please start at the top of Futureplaces.org for current information.

The Future Places festival will host three workshops addressing different topics in digital media theory, design, and production. The workshops are free and prospective participants may enroll on a first-come, first-served basis. In the event a workshop is oversubscribed, a waiting list may be created.

To enroll in a workshop, please email DMfestival@utaustinportugal.org, including the workshop title in the subject heading. Before enrolling, be sure to note the scheduled dates and any prerequisites or recommended experience.

Workshop I: Introduction to Arduino

Dates: October 7-8
Location: School of Fine Arts, University of Porto
Language: English
Maximum number of participants: 20
NOTE: The Arduino workshop is completely filled.

Prerequisites: The workshop does not require any particular knowledge of electronics but a familiarity with programming is useful. Participants must bring their own laptops, and any bits and pieces of hardware they wish to use.

Summary: This workshop introduces participants to the physical computing platform known as Arduino, an open-source environment supported by an international community of users. The first day of this workshop will be devoted to an introduction to physical computing and to the installation of the necessary hardware and software on participants’ laptops. The second day will be spent facilitating participant’s development of small, self-standing projects. Participants will be provided with a beginners’ kit including the Arduino Diecimila, solder-less breadboard, jump wires and components.

The program is led by members of Tinker.it!, a technology and design consultancy based in London and Milan.

Lead instructor: Aleksandar Zivanovic

Alex’s background is in computer/electronic/mechanical engineering, having done postdoc academic research into medical robots. He is now working as an independent consultant developing mechatronic products and running educational activities based around robotics and physical computing. He is also a Visiting Scholar at the Lansdown Centre for Electronic Art at Middlesex University. He has been teaching workshops with Tinker.it! since early in 2008.

Assisting instructor: Andrea Piccolo

Andrea is a Design Researcher and Interaction Designer with a background in Human Computer Interaction. Andrea attended Domus Academy-Interaction Design Institute. Before joining Tinker.it! he has been involved in several design projects on a wide thematic range, from consumer electronics to ethnographic research, not only for academic institutions but also in direct contact with worldwide established companies. He is Tinker.it’s in-house interaction designer in the Milan office.

Workshop II: Interface Design for Mobile Devices

Dates: October 7 – 8

Presentation of work: October 9 (AM)
Location: Serralves Museum
Language: TBA

Maximum number of participants: 21

NOTE: The Interface Design for Mobile Devices workshop is completely filled.

Prerequisites: This workshop is intended for designers, illustrators, programmers interested in information structure and visual design, and content producers including photographers, video artists and sound designers. Working knowledge of image processing and vector drawing using tools such as Photoshop or Illustrator is required. Knowledge of Flash or Flash Lite is a plus but not a necessity. Participants should bring their own equipment (e.g, personal computer and camera) but projects will be done in groups that can share resources.

Summary: Mobile devices and network infrastructures open the possibility for new forms of information access or storytelling while visiting physical places. This workshop addresses this new trend by exploring the user interface design opportunities and challenges for different devices, taking also into account the underlying information architecture or storyline. In the workshop participants will have the opportunity to develop a project in user interface design and information structuring for exploring a physical location, the grounds of the Serralves Museum in Porto.

Lead instructor: Mónica Mendes is a lecturer at the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Lisbon, where she teaches Introduction to Multimedia and Multimedia Programming. She has a Masters in Multimedia Educational Communication (UA) and degree in Communication Design (FBAUL). As an educator, she has been an invited lecturer of Interface Design for Mobile Devices seminars and Implied Technologies master courses; she has also taught Models, Typography, Design Theory and Practice, and Scripto Technology. Additionally, Mónica Mendes has developed projects as a designer at Atelier B2, as a free-lancer and as an interface design consultant, and has participated in research projects on augmented environments and mobile storytelling of the IMG.

Assisting instructor: Nuno Correia is a Professor at the New University of Lisbon, where he teaches Multimedia Computing and Image Processing, and heads a research group on multimedia information processing and interaction (IMG). He was a researcher at Interval Research, Palo Alto, CA, and a researcher at INESC, Portugal. He has worked and directed projects on augmented environments and mobile storytelling funded by the Portuguese Science Foundation and on multimedia for learning funded by HP. Nuno Correia is co-director of the national program on Digital Media in cooperation with UT Austin and associate editor of the Computers and Graphics journal published by Elsevier. URL: http://img.di.fct.unl.pt/~nmc.

Workshop III: Active Media 2.0

Dates: October 11
Location: School of Fine Arts, University of Porto
Language: English
Maximum number of participants: 18
NOTE: The Active Media 2.0 workshop is completely filled.

Prerequisites: No particular knowledge of software is required but can be useful. Participants are asked to bring laptops and are encouraged to bring simple sound/video capturing devices such as mobile phones, digital still cameras, etc.

Summary: Digital media do not represent, they generate. They are rather software than hardware. Networked media are, unlike any other media we have ever known, ephemeral: transforming and growing systems in themselves. The multi-media revolution introduced a noticeable shift from audiovisual media towards real-time active human interaction with the medium. Cinematic computer games with filmic atmospheres, net art installations, digital television, DVD extras: they all put the viewer in control. The key question is: What are the principles and promises of these media that change static objects into dynamic processes, especially in art practices that investigate the crossover with other media using generative and interactive software?

The principal aim of this workshop is to contextualize the subject in a theoretical framework in combination with some hands-on accessible programming experiments. Focusing upon the expanding emerging artistic prospects made possible by technology, we will explore some new directions in art that have arisen between the planes of science, technological development and cultural expression. More specifically we will explore alternative ways of interaction between people, environment and technology (media) and explore the principles of generative processes by mapping a chosen system (city, network, classroom…).

Participants will receive a theoretical introduction into the field of mapping and interactive and generative projects followed by a brief outline of the mapping/interactive/generative software that will be used (FreeMind, Max/Jitter, Sound/Video Capture). The last part of the workshop will be spent in the realization of their own short projects.

Lead instructor: Steven Devleminck is an engineer and designer in Brussels, teaching new media art and information visualization at the Graphic Design Department of the Hogeschool Sint-Lukas Brussel. He is co-founder and director of the Transmedia Program in Arts, Media and Design. He acts as a curator, programmer, designer and publicist and contributed to several projects such as the ‘Shapeshifters’ lecture series at the Brussels Beursschouwburg (www.beursschouwburg.be) and the ‘Perfor(m)ations’ symposium on art and architecture at Wiels, Centre for Contemporary Art. He worked on ‘An Anthropology of World Mapping’ together with Herman Asselberghs and in collaboration with Filip De Boeck and Koen Stroeken of the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology (University Leuven), a project investigating the contextual relevancy of graphical knowledge maps. Recent output of this research includes the book ‘Cartographic Strategies: Subjective Worldviews’ (ACCO, 2008 in collaboration with Herman Asselberghs) and a series of maps exhibited at kunstencentrum Z33, Hasselt. Other work includes the books ‘BinnenInside’ and ‘Lichtzinnig’ (2006, 2007 in collaboration with Johan Stuyck), the articles ‘The Chemistry of Meaning, or How to map a Moment of Magic’ (2007 in collaboration with Koen Stroeken), ‘The Real and the Ideal’ (2007) and ‘Affective Cartography’ (2007), and a series of installations for the multidisciplinary exhibition ‘WIT’ at the Koninklijke Vlaamse Schouwburg (www.kvs.be).

Assisting instructor: Boris Debackere is an Antwerp artist and teaches sound design in the film department of the Hogeschool Sint-Lukas. As a media artist his main interests are the possible integration of different expression forms, with an emphasis on electronic sound and image. His most recent work and research is concentrated on translating and transforming the cinema concept into other forms like Live Cinema and audiovisual installations. His work includes ‘vortices’ (2006) a reactive installation, exposition Gorge(l) at the KMSKA, ‘probe’ (2008) an installation dealing with the relationship between the viewer and the screen, the research project ‘The Cinematic Experience’ (lectures and publication). He collaborated with Brecht Debackere on the live cinema performance ‘rotor’ (2005) (performed at several international media festivals, http://www.rotorscoop.net) and is currently working on a new performance ‘vector’ (http://www.vectorscoop.net). Programming and sound design for Marnix de Nijs’ installations Run Motherfucker Run (2004), Beijing Accelerator (2006), Exploded Views – Remapping Firenze (2008) . Composition and sound design for Herman Asselberghs’ films a.m./p.m. (2004), Proof of Life (2005, First Prize, Transmediale 2007), Capsular (2006), Futur Antérieur (2007) and Altogether (2008).