20200803

The world is a tea: The taste of water is the taste of the world. #ॐ

Digging Onyx Ashanti’s 2019 presentation for Eyeo festival. He wants to turn computerizing into a spatial and temporal activity. As an interface he focuses on hands, because “they do stuff before asking the brain”. He echoes a believe that humans can be programmed trough the hand-interface: The tools we use shape the way we think. I believe there is truth to this. I feel rejuvenated after working with crafts projects or construction. I think writing is a development of our desire to do thinking with our hands. Ashanti’s interest on hands has a solid connection to Tetsuo Kogawa/mini-FM transmitter stuff (mentioned earlier) as both artists are using gesture-based wireless systems.

LOW←TECH MAGAZINE is operated from a solar powered server. Access to the site is depended on weather! The design of site is perfect: Brutal and bandwidth efficient. The premise of the design is the same as with our Ore.e Ref. website (notes on the design here) but the LOW←TECH implementation of image dithering and coding optimization is way more advanced. Their design premise: “Default typeface / No logo” is elegant and they also offer “print-on-demand copies of the blog.”

The Internet is not an autonomous being. Its growing energy use is the consequence of actual decisions made by software developers, web designers, marketing departments, publishers and internet users. With a lightweight, off-the-grid solar-powered website, we want to show that other decisions can be made.

Installed an alternative firmware (Beta3) by Ralim to my ts80p soldering iron. Sending bug/testing notes to the [Long] TS80P Thread development channel. Soldering iron with an alternative firmware and a development community feels like the pinnacle of modernity.

Visited the Makamik squat for the Makamik-fest. The artist lineup was great and there were gigs and performances for three consecutive days. I heard a few gigs on Saturday and visited Salla Valle’s performance on Sunday. Valle worked outdoors and focused on smoke. She hid in the grass and send smoke signals by vaping, then she attempted to store smoke in jars (critique on live-art archivism?) and played a ringtone/mating call mixtape.

We had our final Achille Mbembe reading group session last week. The process was well organized and I enjoyed meeting new people. As a side quest, we met with the Helsinki based group, at the Malmi cemetery for a necro-touristic tour. I escorted folk to the pear-tree garden, a concrete-fence-stage and a relocated mass grave. The visit ended at the discarded gravestone disposal facility, where we saw old gravestones which had been grinded into rubble. Some fragments of letters and numbers could still be identified. The rubble pile felt like a monument and a very fitting summary for the Mbembe reading group sessions: Rubble mesh of identity signs which is used for construction and the underpayment of roads.

20200726

Ducking effect with what I have: TTLFO Clock -> Turing Machine Clock, Pulse Out -> Divider 1&2, 1 -> Rampage IN A, OUT A -> Inverter IN, OUT (This inverts the Ramp. positive env.) -> Sense (V)IN (preamp low & DC, set “ducking amount” by toggling OFFSET and preamp), CV OUT + (This lifts the volume to desired level in VCA, which inverted Ramp. signal pulls down) -> Skis VCA CV IN (Signal IN for the drum sound to be ducked). Divider 2 -> Skis TRIGGER IN (Signal IN for the sound which moves above ducking). Other: Ramp. RISING OUTs work great for vactrol LPG controlled hihats (White noise), TTLGO OUT (with square & Ramp. controlled SHAPE) -> Floating GATE to TRIGGER -> Multicassa Trig IN works great for dynamic percussion. Short experiment with the setup.

20200721

The Broända spring seems to be destroyed. We visited the site (60.22312, 25.12607) yesterday and after a careful inspection of the surroundings it seems that the landscaping of the creek and the construction of the Vartiokylänlahti floodwalls have resulted into the destruction of the natural spring. I found a well in the proximity but it was dry. A survey Helsingin kaupungin ympäristökeskuksen julkaisuja 17/2013 (which Emmi found online) offers a thorough listing of all of the springs in Helsinki. According to this source the Broända spring (also know as “Viking Well”) was the best source for natural water in the city. The destruction of the spring is also confirmed on this blog and by browsing the history of the site on Helsinki ilmakuvina 1932–2014 service. Marko Leppänen has published a comment on a blog (summer, 2015), which details that a concrete rim of the spring well had been damaged by landscaping equipment.

We continued our expedition to the nearby Kurkimoisio spring, which according to the available photos seemed to be in the same condition as during the 17/2013 survey. As mentioned in the survey there were old wooded ground structures (dams?) in its proximity and I think more them were visible then before. The concrete ring placed around the spring opening was poorly covered and it had collected organic material. I tasted the water, it was drinkable but the water was discolored and had an odor. This spring would be great for a restoration project! We also strolled in the Kurkimoisionpuiston creek-spring area but no surface springs could be spotted. Apparently Helsinki area underground waters are not used as supplies for drinking water but there are facilities around the city tapped to the underground reserves, in case something goes wrong with the Päijänne Water Tunnel or the Silvola artificial lake (these are the water supplies for a million people). We spotted an odd facility named Broändan pohjavesilaitos near to the springs.

2020020

A selection of the Trans-Siberian Railway -Sound Archive is now available on Freesound. There are 35 clips (1.7gb) and I think the gps data mapping of the recordings alone tells a nice story. I’ve included Helsinki as a part of the Trans-Siberian railway network… As it was intended when the Tsar had our rails build. The archive would work great as background noise for a train-story/documentary or for train themed games. I think some clips might work as chopped samples too. The indexing of the files is a bit messy but there are real gems in the mix. My favorite clips are:

I’m listening to them while writing and I can feel the sounds vibrating my phone, which makes the clips feel material, like thin peals of the trip. Miinas note that the archive is linked with geology (or the process of harvesting geological samples for profit) feels acute. I like that the samples have interference sounds and occasionally my hands can be heard touching the mic. The interference makes the surrounding medias physical, it shows the limits of the recording technology and adds to the appeal. There is a clip were the microphone passes an x-ray machine for example. The material disturbances make me think of Viktor Toikkanen when he pushed his laptop to memory overload glitch territory when live-coding.

Our In Various Stages of Ruins exhibition series continues at Alkovi. The current exhibition titled Toxicity will be build gradually through the end of the summer towards the fall. Currently there are photos from the Town of Asbest on display, my humble C-Cassette recording we made with Jesse titled Two Men Coughing in the Woods (2020) and a set of DIY orthopedic supports I made for my feet (mentioned earlier).

20200719

Assisted Riikka Kuoppala with her Vegan & Legal service yesterday. I offered mineral waters and chatted people up as her assistant. We worked in the Dallapé park and at Harjutori. I had fun and got an insight to Kuoppala’s project. I think, as an artwork Vegan & Legal is great for illustrating the technical and esthetic framework law is embedded to. The default look of law is gray and masculine.

Witnessing Riikka talk about law in a public park, wearing plain clothes and offering legal guidance, while serving kombucha felt oddly disturbing. This is because I’m not used to see law discussed in a comfortable setting and I’m not used to sympathize with people who work with it. All my dealings with law have been oppressive and violently bureaucratic. I hate everything about it, from the architecture of courts, all the way down to the the ugly sandwiches they serve in cafeterias.

On a practical level it was heart-warming to see Riikka offer legal guidance for free. Some had reserved a session and send her detailed questions to look up in advance. I think Vegan & Legal succeeds in making law more accessible and I hope this will encourage people working with law to work more publicly in the future.