Mobile phones perform as servants - conscientious, ready to help and always listening. In this subversive talk, I explore how mobile devices can be twisted to act as instigators, daring their owners into unusual situations and uncomfortable experiences. Drawing from a range of recent projects, we will uncover the mischievous potential of a technology that is designed to be aware of its surroundings. By reframing mobile phones as a powerful tool for provocative and critical experiences, I challenge the public to reassess their relationship with their telephone as it twists from obsequious gadget into the sort of bad influence our parents warned us about.
Ben Kirman is a Senior Lecturer in Game Design at the University of Lincoln. Specialising in designing critical and provocative interactive systems, Ben's work weaves the social fabric of spaces into subversive location-based digital experiences to explore unconventional aspects of the human-computer relationship. Perhaps most notorious for releasing a mobile game where players smuggle contraband through real airport security, his varied and interdisciplinary work draws from game studies, psychology, HCI and the arts. The outcomes of this mischievous research ranges from provocative systems and interventions to the publication of guitar tabs and homoerotic fiction in conference proceedings. He is also (probably) the only computing academic to have simultaneously had articles about their work in both New Scientist and Your Cat Magazine.
Image credit: Katrin Baumgarten, Raging Roger, 2011
Thursday 21st January 2016
MzTEK.org is a women's art and technology education and showcasing initiative, founded in 2009 by Sophie McDonald and Sally Northmore, in collaboration with Space Studios, with the aim of addressing the gender imbalance in it's field. It is a loose collection of women artists working with technology that come together to run workshops, talk series and showcases. We have worked in a variety of settings including art centres, museums, conferences, collages, and music festivals, to deliver fun, accessible creative technology workshops to women, and to the wider public. We have worked closely with partners including the V&A, Barbican, Space Studios and Access Space. This talk will present some of the major projects MzTEK has delivered since 2009 including Chi-TEK and Hacked Human Orchestra.