Bridging the Gap Between Virtual and Physical

I’m not quite sure where to start with this piece. After struggling to make it work on my own laptop (with mild success), I ended up watching a read-through on YouTube. Although there were a few moments where I felt captivated, like when the words formed images or fell down like rain at the end, mostly I was underwhelmed. The poem/letters didn’t make much sense, and like the Abra app, it seemed like it was just a mish-mash of flowy sounding words in an attempt to create something vaguely artistic.

The ‘Scaramouche’, which pops up a few times in this work, is a sort of comedic archetype in Italian art/theatre

To touch on the sense of the ’embodied’, how our own movements and touches contribute to the execution of digital narratives, I think Between Page and Screen presents an interesting case study. As their website states, the book will not be readable unless we render it so by holding it up to a webcam. But, even if we manage to do that, the manner in which we hold it or even the length of time we hold it up can affect our experience in reading it. For example, when I was attempting to read the book, I had to be very particular about how far away I held the book from the screen and where my fingers were if I wanted to get a clear picture.

Even though this work just doesn’t suit my taste, it does offer an intriguing look at how the distinction between the physical and virtual spheres can be blurred. As a previous blog post mentioned, it captures “the ‘in-between’ world”, so to speak, that many creators haven’t tapped into as of yet. It will be exciting to see how this ‘world’ is explored further as technology progresses. I think the iPhone X’s 3D emoji feature shows one playful way this could manifest.

 

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