Here are reflections on Algorithmic Walk, as experienced via Google Earth and headphones
I am aware in new ways that all my activities on the computer are algorithmic strolls. I add keywords into the Google Earth prompt and continue with change of screenery to the avatar of the 511 building. The ways in which the interface is articulated, the start and stop of the audio ceases the rich background noise. I’m experiencing this spatial narrative via Google Earth, from the library which is not quiet but differently populated with sound.
I find it interesting that the flag at the post office flys at half-mast, marking it more distinctly in time than the generic status of ‘things on a map’, it becomes a landmark in time?
The prompts lead me inside but i instead must go inside my mind to conjure up images of Theos. Sparsely occupied, with many options. They don’t take my credit card, I use a debit card instead. I order an egg sandwich and a coffee. I read the Willamette Weekly, last week’s edition, as i wait for my sandwich to arrive. The coffee is closer to gas station fare while the egg sandwich quite good.
I cheat in ways afforded to me by Google Maps. I zoom. I pull back to God’s eye view and re-orient myself. Ironically, i become frustrated with the limitations of this mode of way-finding. It doesn’t go where I want to go, it doesn’t even go where I could go if left to my own devices. This experience points me to the limitations of the map. The map is not the terrain and the mysterious of the journey does not translate into the Google Maps experience as much as, the IRL version promises to. Algorithms spar with algorithms and Google Maps may be too much technologization to appreciate the artistry of this implemented procedure. Typically Google hides its algorithm under the map, under the surface, black-boxed away. Glitches creep out of the clockwork pointing to mechanisms below
This project maps an algorithm over a surface which conceals another set of algorithms. I look forward to the ability to move at my own pace, following the desire lines rather than those desires aligned by the Search engineer itself, Google. It does make me appreciate resistance as a vector of remediation. Rather than smooth lines and clean translation, the resistance, the rifts, the process becomes the glitch, the anomaly the break in routine
To go to other reviews of Spatial Narratives!