See you tomorrow!

Very much looking forward to seeing you all tomorrow.  If you want to tweet us during the event then please use #postdigi.  See you there!


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Welcome to delegates

Many thanks to all of you who have booked a place on what looks set to be a very interesting and vibrant event, attracting a range of delegates from postgraduates studying digital media, artists, festival organisers, innovation managers and academics, making for a day of real knowledge exchange and sharing across disciplines (and platforms!).

We are very much looking forward to seeing you on the 24th.  If you  haven’t registered yet then there are one or two more tickets left if you hurry!

You should have all the information you need to find your way here in the links above.  In the meantime, if you need any more information, or if you change your mind about joining us for a meal at Bordeaux Quay (at own expense), then please email Nick Triggs to book a place.

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“Face it the digital revolution is over”

Back in 1998, Nicholas Negroponte published ‘Beyond Digital’Wired (issue 6.12, December) in which he predicted that “digital-ness” would just become part of the wallpaper: “Its literal form, the technology, is already beginning to be taken for granted, and its connotation will become tomorrow’s commercial and cultural compost for new ideas. Like air and drinking water, being digital will be noticed only by its absence, not its presence”. Referencing the “horseless carriage”, Negroponte is clearly drawing on the notion of “disruptive technology” first coined by Christensen and Bower in ‘Disruptive Technologies: Catching the Wave’ in 1995.  Suggesting that we hadn’t even reached “base camp” in the Digital Age, Negroponte, nevertheless understood that whilst digital technology was busy disrupting every facet of human life, it would soon become so banal as to disappear:

Theraputic Barbie doll

“Computers as we know them today will a) be boring, and b) disappear into things that are first and foremost something else: smart nails, self-cleaning shirts, driverless cars, therapeutic Barbie dolls, intelligent doorknobs that let the Federal Express man in and Fido out, but not 10 other dogs back in. Computers will be a sweeping yet invisible part of our everyday lives: We’ll live in them, wear them, even eat them. A computer a day will keep the doctor away”.

Whilst Negroponte heralds the end of the digital revolution, Yochai Benkler (2006), The Wealth of Networks suggests that its repercussions are still ongoing: It seems passé today to speak of “the Internet revolution.” In some academic circles, it is positively naïve. But it should not be. The change brought about by the networked information environment is deep. It is structural. It goes to the very foundations of how liberal markets and liberal democracies have coevolved for almost two centuries (1).

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Post-digital or die!

Take a look at this post, from Welcome to Optimism, weblog of communications agency Weiden and Kennedy, London (famous for their Old Spice and Nokia campaigns) for a look at how advertising companies are debating the ways in which digital technologies have disrupted their industry:  “Digital is not a channel; it’s the context in which everything lives As Madonna nearly sang, we are living in a post-digital world. New media are now just media. Digital is not a channel; it’s the ubiquitous, continuous context in which everything lives”.  It seems that advertising is one of the arenas in which the idea of the “postdigital” is cropping up more and more as a concept.

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National Civic Day

Our symposium happily coincides with National Civic Day, 25th June, which is about celebrating the city where you live. Bristol Civic Society are organising an event to celebrate.  They say:

“Our theme in Bristol is to celebrate our public spaces. We plan, amongst other things, a big “Teddy Bears Picnic” event in the “Bear Pit” at St James Barton Roundabout and wherever you are in Bristol to make the day a mass participation event using digital media (mobile phones, Facebook, Twitter etc) to enable the general public to send messages, photos, videos and pinpoint their location from other public spaces in Bristol but we need your help. Our hope is to display an online interactive map showing activity across the city, on a screen in the Bear Pit, and if possible the big screen in Millennium Square. We hope to come up with something that will catch the imagination of everyone in Bristol.”

So, even more reason to head down to Bristol for the day!

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A message from Sylvia Harvey

– former Secretary and Chair of AMFIT, the predecessor to AMCCaS & MeCCSA, and early member of the Association of Media Practice Educators (AMPE) which merged with MeCCSA in 2006 – “Just a note to say how pleased I am to see that there will be a strong JMP symposium in Bristol in June. Well done! I shall try to come to your event this summer and do hope it all goes well. I think these symposia have become especially important since the AMPE merger into MeCCSA. As you probably know, I thought that merger was premature in taking place before ‘practice’ colleagues had really found their feet in an often ignorant and hostile academic environment. I’m sure that your event will help to remedy the deficit.”

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MeCCSA sponsors event

The MeCCSA Practice Network is supporting the symposium with a bursary, allowing us to increase the number of concessions we can offer.

Joanna Callaghan, the new chair of the network, was keen to sponsor the event and to ensure that those who might not get institutional support, including postgraduates, hourly paid lecturers and freelancers, would have the opportunity to attend.

Many thanks to Joanna and to MeCCSA for recognising the Journal of Media Practice’s contribution to the development of practice pedagogy and research both within the academy and beyond.

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New Book on Postdigital Art

Intellect Books (publishers of the Journal of Media Practice) are publishing a new book on postdigital art, due February 2011.

According to their website: “In The Future of Art in a Postdigital Age, artist and educator Mel Alexenberg offers a prophetic vision of a postdigital future that reveals a paradigm shift from the Hellenistic to the Hebraic roots of Western culture. The author surveys new art forms emerging from a postdigitial age that address the humanization of digital technologies. He ventures beyond the digital to explore postdigital perspectives rising from creative encounters between art, science, technology, and human consciousness.”

See also Alexenberg’s blog on Postdigital Art and his other blog on the Future of Art.

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Here’s the Wiki Dictionary definition for Postdigital:

Postdigital (Adjective). Of or pertaining to art forms that address the humanization of digital technologies through interplay between digital, biological, cultural, and spiritual systems, between cyberspace and real space, between embodied media and mixed reality in social and physical communication, between high tech and high touch experiences, between visual, haptic, auditory, and kinesthetic media experiences, between virtual and augmented reality, between roots and globalization, between autoethnography and community narrative, and between web-enabled peer-produced wikiart and artworks created with alternative media through participation, interaction, and collaboration in which the role of the artist is redefined.

A useful starting point for discussion.  It being a wiki I guess we can all contribute and redefine the term as we go along…. apparently it ‘needs severe pruning’!

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MeCCSA Practice Section

I’ve posted the CFP up on the MeCCSA Practice Section Facebook group and invited members to attend. I’m very excited to see that there are already 14 who are hoping to attend and 18 maybes. Click here to join the MeCCSA Practice Section Facebook group.

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