Media Objects Lab – Precursor Discussion

by stronged

After a short discussion about how the past week has been for each member of the lab, Adrian drew a diagram to explain how different anthropological structures can relate to one another. He used the example of consuming animals relating to how we view incestuous marriage practices:

We spoke of how a simile differs from a metaphor due to it being ‘similar’ to the thing/object it is being used to articulate a quality of. Whereas a metaphor is a different thing/object from the initial object yet conceptually shares a commonality.

Adrian paraphrased Bogost, detailing that we are always going to be one step removed from the object in trying to understand it. The only way we can approach it is through metaphor, which is the actualization of being one step removed. Further, the relation of objects occurs external to the thing/object.

Object is a caricature because we cannot perceive all of it’s qualities. The attributes you notice of an object depends on what matters to you – therefore there is no way to escape your anthropocentric understanding of the world. French philosopher Henri Bergson describes a reductionist approach to deciphering objects. There is no way to perceive all aspects of an object.

Habitus – the inclination of being a certain way or inhabiting a particular innate routine. How you conduct yourself.

Adrian explained that ethics itself is a hyperobject (p.79) due to not having a fixed border of definition or solidity. Ethics depends completely upon the observer (the eye of the beholder), for what I may term to be an ethical conduct may not be the case for a turtle, or that rock over there.

We briefly discussed our thoughts about the precursor project advancing upon us. I am keen to do some more work around my project by creating an exploded diagram. Also have a play with wordle, as Ruby has done.

I feel as though Adrian’s homework task he has set for me is similar to the Lars Von Trier practice-based tasks set for Claus Nissen in The Five Obstructions (2003). Perhaps I should just go off and do what he has suggested without second-guessing it. I know it will help with my understanding of interactive media and warming my filmmaking skills up again (They have been lying dorment for quite some time now).

I am still unsatisfied with the questions I have come up with for this mini-project. I feel they are not specific enough and the subjects/interviewees will have a hard time grasping the concept of an ontograph – free association – listing.

Adrian is pushing me to use my iphone for this task as it will free me up to being flexible and not placing as much emphasis on the professional technological aspects of the project. However, my main concerns are 1) the storage space needed to collect the necessary audio interviews and images/motion, and 2) the autofocusing and aperture for the camera is incredibly frustrating. I can remedy the second point by using my 7D to capture the image portion of the experiment and just use my iphone to record the audio (the interviews).

I am also considering whether to approach this task either qualitatively or quantatively. Whether to approach a broad cross-section of my environment to collect a diverse range of associations (whether to water/pedagogy/etc.) or to approach just three respondents and approach them on three separate occasions. The first occasion starting with a broad exploration of the topic, the second unpacking the terms they used from the first occasion, and the third unpacking this even further.

Not too sure.


  • Investigate dictaphone apps on iphone
  • Investigate different platforms to
  • Create exploded diagram