This project was an opportunity to explore dead and lost technology. In this case, the term technology was applied to anything that was essential to our daily life. From handwriting and speech, to electronics.
Our goal was to identify an “old technology” that is being replaced by a “new technology.” In other words, a new way to do things.
I chose to revive a previous project called “First On Twitter.” On the past project I commented on the overuse of Twitter in television news. Applied to this dead and lost technology project, I chose to consider how Twitter in some sense is replacing television news.
In this case the dead technology was represented by the 1983 Samsung TV and the static video. With the death of analog TV transmissions static or snow will never be seen again.
(Read about white noise)
Interestingly enough another dead technology that emerged was the openframeworks code I had written a year ago. Due to the computer and library upgrades the code did not work. It is amazing how within a year technology can become completely obsolete. This project was an opportunity for me re-learn and re-write the code.
The technology being lost is represented by television news. In the past few years television news have a new competitor for breaking news: Twitter. The times where broadcast journalists competed with one another to have an exclusive or break a story is disappearing. News now break on Twitter and TV news networks are using Twitter as a complement to communicate the news.
With this in mind, using openframeworks I created a news channel called Twitter News Network which was displayed inside an old TV. All the tweets that have the word “breaking news” are parsed and displayed on the screen on top of the stative video as a television banner with the shape of a comic speech bubble to indicate that the device is generating the information. The text to speech openframeworks library reads the tweet out loud.
This is a representation of the death of analog television, an era without Twitter and the emergence on top of that old technology of a digital way of communication and information.
After showing this project contained in an old television set to former broadcast journalists they thought that the project definitely speaks to the current transformation of the TV news industry and it could easily be implemented as a mobile device app, as well as an installation at the museum dedicated to News in DC, the Newseum.