Consumer trust and property paradigm

Zittrain states that tech consumers are willingly sacrificing freedom over security through purchase of closed-source software such as Apple. While alarming at first, considering the underlying political framework of the US of freedom, there is sufficient argument for proprietary software. According to Spenner, P. Freeman, K. consumer loyalty is built on simplicity, thus the ability for an individual navigate and trust the brand is fundamental. Connecting a Samsung phone to a Mac results in a series of negative touch points (increased expenditure of downloading transfer apps, the requirement of pressing ‘accept’ a multitude of times), rather than the simplicity of linking iOS products (thus closed-source can be positive for developing the stickiness of non-developer consumers).

This is simplicity construct is linked to the intellectual property paradigm in that open source philosophy argues that information should be co-developed, distributed and consumed by all. However if software is a particularly specialised activity, and an idea, than it can be established as an expression of the intellect.



MEDA Journal Week 9

Large part of discussion for the MEDA project centred around the concept of whether social media is ‘real.’ With human sensory modalities as a construct of representation by the mind, allowing individuals to understand through perceptual experiences (Lewkowicz, D. J. Ghazanfar, A. A. 2009). Therefore does social media distort reality through framing, or is it an extension of the self. This stems into the theory of the mind-body problem, as whether the realm of the mind transcends into the digital and to whether such interactions are tangible experiences. According to Hart, W. D. (1996) the substance of the mind can exist outside of physical manifestations.

From this led to the discussion to move away from looking at social media and into the distortion of reality and senses. Through filming of two faces expressing two emotions (happy and angry), dividing the projected faces by a sheet and playing conflicting sounds:

Angry Sounds:

Happy Sounds:

The idea behind the faces is to create confusion for the individual, at first from a distance the viewer perceives a mixture of sounds and two faces. However once the individual moves closer to the art, they experience that the sounds are contrasted to the visuals – creating a distortion in the viewer’s sensory experience, perceiving a happy face with angry sounds.  


Hart, W. D. (1996) A Companion to the Philosophy of the Mind, Wiley, viewed 08.05.17

Lewkowicz, D. J. Ghazanfar, A. A. (2009) The emergence of multisensory systems through perceptual narrowing, Florida Atlantic University, viewed 07.05.17 <>

MEDA Journal Week 8 – Multi Sensory Interaction

Multisensory integration is the process in which sensory input, through the nervous system, informs the individual’s concept of the external environment (Stein et al. 2009). Multisensory interaction will form the core concept of our MEDA project.

Subjects such as Immersion, Distortion and Curiosity have been discussed:

From previous MEDA research, immersion is subject to a series of sensory interactions through the concept of spatial presence. For individuals to transcend beyond their physical presence and develop a relationship within the digital environment is defined as spatial presence; the occurrence when media produces ‘a sense of being there.’ This arises when an individual’s perception fails to differentiate the role of technology that makes it appear that they are in an artificial environment rather from the actual physical environment. (Wirth et al. 2007).

Wirth demonstrates two steps are required for the experience of spatial presence. With the first step being a mental-model of the mediated circumstances that understands information relative to space and attention allocation all determine the precursor for spatial presence through the Spatial Situation Model (SSM).

  • Media Factors: persistence, realism


  • Process Components: the mediated environment meets the user’s needs and interests.
  • User Actions: involvements and beliefs
  • User Factors: motivation


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Practical concepts include what develops from curiosity such as reward. We explored curiosity and reward through developing a series of interacting senses (projector, mirror, sound and confined space) to research the concept of distortion and social media. Exploring the concept of whether social media is a distorted construct of reality, or rather an extension. However following the installation we determined that it was just an attempt to integrate every form of sensory interaction and hoping for some response.




Stein, B. E. Stanford, T. R. Rowland, B. A. (2009) The Neural Basis of Multisensory Intergration in the Midbrain: Its organisation and maturity, NCBI, viewed 01.05.17 <>

Wirth, W. (2007) A Process Model of the Formation of Spatial Presence Experiences, Media Psychology Volume 9, viewed 01.05.17 <>

Why Not Hand Over a Shelter To A Hermit Crab – MEDA301

MEDA301 – Materialising the Digital – Sam Cavanagh

Why Not Hand Over a Shelter to Hermit Crabs by Aki Inomata explores the concept of geopolitics and the construction of land as human property (Inomata, A. 2010-16). Through the application of Computed Tomography (CT) scans, Inomata utilises 3DCG data to design 3D printed plastic shells. Hermit Crabs behaviour of shell acquisition allows for Inomata to express the social context humans and crabs have relating to ‘property.’


CT Scanning is the process in which geometry processing produces imagery ‘slices,’ allowing for an understanding of the composition of the object without physically manipulating the material (NIH, 2017).  While often associated with medical imaging, the process of CT Scanning and its consequence is increasingly being understood as an art, with Dr. Kai-hung Fei adding colours to indicate further patient information rather than standard grayscale (Herman, J. 2017).

(4th Ventricle of the Brain + Roof of Mouth, Source)

This is the reflection of process art, the movement in which the end-product isn’t the artistic value, but rather the activity of gathering, disseminating and construction of materials and ideas develops as the creative product (Tate, 2017). This is explored by Inomata through the capacity to understand what information the geometry processing represents. According to Botsch et al. (2010) geometry processing (or polygon mesh) is the study that concerns mathematics and computer science to produce algorithms that manipulate geometric data. Without exploring the mathematics heavily, for the process to occur Inomata had to understand the properties of a shape, and the stages associated with shapes to ensure those properties correlate to the natural geometry and topology of hermit shells.

The stages of a shape is represented through

  • The birth; represented through models, mathematical representation or a scan.
  • Subsequently the shape can be edited and manipulated.
  • Life; the shape is produced and consumed.

Once achieved the process of slicing occurs, in which the model is converted into a series of thin layers, producing code allowing for 3D printing software to understand the model. Through additive methods, the printer builds upon the substance through layering and achieves the noted product.  

Why not hand over a shelter to Hermit Crabs not only explores the mathematical and technological artistic process, but questions the understanding of material and what information the substance represents as a consequence of a digital platform; is Inomata’s product a true shell, or is it a representation. This is studied by that of substance theory in that the objecthood of the shell is distinct from its properties (Langton, R. 2004). With material only experienced through its properties, it becomes difficult to determine the true aspect of the object. This is explored by Kosuth, J. (1965) in One and Three Chairs, in which a chair, a photograph of that chair and the dictionary definition of a chair are presented, framing the question as to which is the real chair. Zelinskie, A (2014) One and One Chair further explored this relationship through digital technology 3D printing a chair.

Source 1, 2

Digital art has often been defined as immaterial, with the representations occurring in digital spheres. However as conceptual and practical art increasingly derives from digital forms, and manifests into the physical Paul illustrates this as neomateriality. Paul, C. (2015) suggest that “neomateriality captures an objecthood that incorporates networked digital technologies and embeds, processes, and reflects back the data of humans and the environment, or reveals its own coded materiality and the way in which digital processes perceive and shape our world.” Thus the code exhibited by Inomata’s process engages with the neomateriality as the result of CT and 3D printing data and its indendepanancy to the material framework of the shell (Paul, C. 2015).

We can identify the link between crab property and human property through the incorporation of well known buildings, the vatican and New York highrises, as reference to the shell as human architecture on a separate scale (Singhh, S. 2014). This begins to build upon the aesthetic structure of not only buildings, but the organism’s relationship to the infastructure. Dewey, J. (1934) states that art does not exist physically, but in Dewey’s perspective the art is represented by what the physical work does within the experience. Dewey uses the example of the Pantheon, in that for an individual to understand its impressive context one must study the cultural framework that Athen’s society and the ‘civic religion its citizens expressed.’ We can apply Dewey’s Aesthetic Theory to the physical representation of Inomata’s work, as one must first understand the context of Inomata’s belief of peaceful acquisition. Moreover that the idea of a hermit crab’s natural shell is art. Through the concept of aesthetic in the raw, in that the aesthetic develops through the positive immersion in the activity (Dewey’s example of poking fire and the reaction that occurs). Thus if an individual gains enjoyment from natural occurrences then the shell acquisition, in itself, is aesthetic.

Thus as we consume Inomata’s work we develop an experience. According to Dewey, J. (1934) an experience only occurs once the material is satisfied. As the individual attempts an idea or challenge, that framework determines the structure of the process, and will continue to do until “the self and the object are mutually adapted.” This is a reflection of concept of process art discussed earlier, with the value and meaning Inomata’s experience with the exhibition that was the inspiration, to the study of Hermit Crabs through to the final design and display.

While the material and process is fundamental to Inomata’s work Why Not Hand Over a Shelter to Hermit Crabs, beyond the subject properties, explores the conceptual notion of acquisition and property. Illustrating (Inomata, A. 2010-16) that the peaceful exchange of land between countries, the definition of the land and how it represents a similar exchange in hermit crabs. We can associate the human-crab relationship to that of vacancy chain theory (VCT). VCT demonstrates the process in which limited resources, such as land, disseminates through human population (Rotjan et al. 2010). In human conditions when the resource is introduced to the social structure is consumed by first applicable individual, that individual’s previous resource is then left available to subsequent consumers.

According to Rothan et al. (2010) in crab model systems one vacant shell produces a new system of switching shells. Rotjan et al. (2010) states that shell (and human) acquisition is often violent, with synchronous acquisition leading to crabs in shared environments competing for the greatest benefit. 



Thus Inomata explores the conceptual idea of human asynchronous exchange (her noting the France-Japanese Embassy Exchange as the core inspiration). This is demonstrated in her live instalment through only having one crab within the environment to prevent risk and aggregations.

The underlying concept emphasised is human history of violence towards territory and structures (Jerusalem during the Holy Wars and The Great Wall). According to the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) (2017) art stimulates definitive conditions within the ‘aesthetic infrastructure with these experiences interact with the human frame of the world, and produced through engagement with the environment and product. The USIP illustrates that the arts community, particularly Inomata’s work, produces the capacity of connectivity, exchange and inspiration.   

Why Not Hand Over a Shelter to Hermit Crabs primarily explores the human-crab vacancy theory and the consequence of non-violent exchange, expressing an underlying political concept and challenging what is often a conflicting environment. This is achieved through utilising geometry processing to 3D print plastic shells applicable for Hermit Crabs. Applying neomateriality Inomata’s work explores the relationship between digital and physical material with the artistic process occurring via CT scanning and 3D printing technology. This challenges the idea of objecthood, and whether the 3D printed object is a true construct or a representation. Dewey’s theory of aesthetics builds upon the idea of process art, and attempt to understand the experience created by Inomata. Consequently we have a multi-layer product full of interpretations beyond Inomata’s description.



Botsch, M. Kobbelt, L. Pauly, M. Allienz, P. Levy, B. (2010) Polygon Mesh Processing, A K Peters, LTD. Natick, Massachusetts, viewed 25.04.17 <,%20et%20al.%20Polygon%20mesh%20processing%20(AK%20Peters,%202010)(ISBN%201568814267)(C)(O)(243s)_CsCg_.pdf>  

Dewey, J. (1934) Dewey Aesthetics, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Stanford University, viewed 28.04.17 <>

Herman, J. (2017) Psychedelic images from inside your body, SLATE, viewed 28.04.17 <>  

Inomata, A. (2010 – 16) Why Not Hand Over a ‘Shelter’ to Hermit Crabs? Aki Inomata, Out of Hand: Materialising the Digital, Powerhouse Museum, viewed 22.04.17 

Langton, R. (2004) Elusive Knowledge of Things Themselves, Australasian Journal of Philosophy, Vol 82, No. 1, viewed 22.04.17 <>

National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (2017) Computed Tomography (CT), Science Education, viewed 26.04.17 <>  

Paul, C. (2015) From Immateriality to Neomateriality: Art and the Conditions of Digital Materiality, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, viewed 26.04.17 <>  

Rotjan, R. D. Chabot, J. R. Lewis, S. M. (2010) Social context of shell acquisition in coenobita clypeatus Hermit Crabs, Behavioural Ecology Vol. 21 Issue 3. Oxford Academic, viewed 27.04.17 <>

Singhh, S. (2014) Aki Inomata’s – Why not hand over a Shelter to Hermit Crabs, ArchiSearch, viewed 29.04.17 <>

Tate (2017) Process art, viewed 28.04.17 <>

United States Institute of Peace (2017) Arts and Building Peace: Affirming the Basics and Envisioning the Future, viewed 28.04.17 <>


The Law of Content

The concept of property extends beyond tangible products and into intangible manifestations (software and commerce, such as Facebook), protecting the expression of an idea. Due to rapid innovation following the digital revolution, copyright of code has become increasingly lucrative. However issues arise in copyright of digital media:

  1. The ability of media, or content to reproduce itself.
  2. The ease in which it can be transmitted (Illustrated by Dawkins, R. Meme Gene).
  3. The simplicity to modify and replicate.
  4. ‘The equivalence of works in digital form’
  5. ‘The compactness of digital media work’
  6. The ability digital spheres have in developing new space and material.

With a vast number of business models built upon content sharing is beginning to challenge brands boundaries of intellectual property law. With questions concerning the legal status of memes or hashtags, as demonstrated by the 6 million dollar lawsuit regarding a pharmacy chain sharing a celebrity’s picture.

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File Sharing, Remixing and the Hydra

The development of Web 2.0 has increased remix culture, illustrated by that of Reddit, 4Chan (Pepe the Frog) and Facebook, such culture isn’t exclusive to digital spheres with art recycling across history. However the legal framework allows anyone that remixes content liable for lawsuit. Fleischer argues that following the 21st century copyright law has developed towards regulation of access to tools. The issue arises in distinction with media now distributed through a singular medium, with the traditional radio station now considered as a streaming service and Fleischer stating the only difference is end-users software configuration allowing for ‘save file.’

While copyright, civil and criminal law aim to regulate access to this information (Megaupload Case, Pirate Bay, Silk Road, Silk Road 2.0, Diabolus Market) Biddle et al. argue that as long as individuals want to share knowledge, such distribution will remain (darkweb), through small cryptic or non-digital networks (illustrated below) regardless of law. With Web 2.0 putting power into produsers hands, the ancient myth of the Hydra now has relevance in an ever growing digital world.  

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Singularity – Board Game Pitch

Singularity is an intergalactic resource and domination project, in which the player takes upon themselves to save a climate ravaged civilisation through rapid intergalactic capitalism. Each player takes the role as commander-in-chief of a civilisation, and through calculated investments must achieve a Technological Singularity (Type 4) to win.

Singularity is based upon the framework of the Kardashev Scale. The scale measures the technological capability of a civilisation through its ability to harness energy:

Type I: Planetary Civilisation; store and utilise all energy that reaches the planet.
Type II: Civilisation can harness the energy of its neighboring star.
Type III: Civilisation can harness energy of host galaxy
Type 4: Civilisation can harness energy of whole universe.

Players start as a Type I civilisation, and exploitation of planetary resources has produced extinction level climate change. Thus in order to ensure the survival of your civilisation players must become an intergalactic civilisation and progress to Type 4. Civilisations start with renewable and mining investments (wind, solar, nuclear and mining infrastructure cards) that provide players with three tokens each round. Through accumulation of tokens players purchase cards that increase the return on investment (ROI), allowing for progress up the Kardashev Scale. However players cannot immediately progress to Type 4, rather achieving each ‘level’ before advancing.

Each round players take turns in rolling one or two dice dependent on their investments. Players may purchase a card that allows for two dice. As players progress civilisation types, new cards become available increasing ROI but at a higher purchase cost. ROI is achieved if the player or opposition roll the criteria noted on the card, for example ‘If opposition player rolls 4, collect 3 tokens as remuneration for your nuclear power plant.’ Once civilisations have progress beyond Type I, new cards ROI are noted as ‘roll 10 and your ability to harness energy from Black Hole’s produces 25 tokens.’ 

In order to increase civilisation types certain cards must be purchased:

Type II: Dyson Sphere 

Type III: Technological Revolution (Allowing for the cost of Dyson Spheres to decrease).

  • To purchase players must have cards AI Slavery and Dyson Sphere Manufacturing Plant.

Type 4: Technological Singularity (Once purchased game is won).

  • To purchase players must have cards Germinal Choice Technology, Terraforming Infrastructure and Intelligence Explosion.

The inclusion of confrontation allows for deceleration of rapid expansion by a prospect player, to allowing greater competition. This includes cards that harm ROI (military conflict) and skip turns (AI enslavement, market regulation).

Marketing + Distribution

Singularity’s target audience (TA) demographics are ages of 16 – upwards targeting individuals geographically located in Western societies due to capitalist experience and ideology. TA psychographics include individuals who have interests in trade markets, space travel and theory, and economic systems such as capitalism. Behavioural variables include consumption of similar products such as Monopoly, Risk and Machi Koro (Percy, L. Rosenbaum-Elliot, R. 2012). 

Distribution of Singularity through digital channels such as Amazon and Kogan, with the absence of in-store distribution removes intermediaries reducing operational costs. Application of box design below 0.64kg will cost 2.99 USD through Amazon’s distribution channels, with a 0.64 USD rate for monthly storage. Consideration of absent brand awareness for Singularity must be taken into account, thus free distribution via print of a beta product with reduced aesthetics will be available for personal consumption. 

The application of the free beta drives the TA into action through trial intention. According to Lammers product sampling illustrates ‘shaping’ associated with learning theory. Through reinforcement of behaviours that are similar to the desired behaviour we can tailor product sampling to the desired response effectively. Thus delivering the beta product free for print we can help the consumer form assumptions about their behaviour that may deliver a purchase intention when the opportunity arises. For example, targeting families that desire an immediate emotional interaction through board games we can reinforce assumptions with the Singularity brand. 

Non-Hyperlinked References: 

Percy, L. Rosenbaum – Elliot (2012) Strategic Advertising Management, Oxford University Press, viewed 10.04.17