Meta-Medium (The Expanded Alan Kay)


Session Title:

  • Philosophy and Ethics of Bioart

Presentation Title:

  • Meta-Medium (The Expanded Alan Kay)



  • In the domain of biology and more specifically in the theory of evolution, we can define the extended field of conception as the totality of viable virtual paths that a certain evolutive stage can follow. As a classic example (Borges), all the books that can be written using the total possible combinations of the alphabet that produce words and sentences which make sense. One of the actualizations of this extended field of conception is, for example, the tale where the author describes this process.

    This brief introduction allows us to place this problem. Nowadays, deep scientific explanations that present the biologic and the psychological as the result of algorithmic systems. As an example, we can refer the evolution as a blind Darwinian algorithm (Dennet), its cultural memetic extension, the computational theory of the mind or the investigations around AI.

    An extremely interesting fact and not always explored is that also computers are algorithmic machines by excellence. The general knowledge of the outside  world as a manifestation of the algorithmic system, associated to powerful computational iteractive manipulators, allow to delineate a space of research whose crossings generates new Human definitions of the so-called Human (Kittler).

    Considering this brief description of the informational lines that cross Human and machinic, it becomes imperious to redelineate  the theory of new media around these facts. It´s not enough to analyse the remediation (Bolter & Grusin) or to consider cinema as privileged precursor (Manovich). The theoretical work shall be placed to a more general level and implies that the notion of mediation is understood in all its aceptions. The nature, body and mind, are today seen as spaces of mediation, so a theory of new media is forcibly a theory of the meta-processes that allow, feed and confer dynamic to the manifestations of design out of chaos. With or without the help of the mind! With or without the help of the computer.


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