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Code Kitchen Series All November Long

Code Kitchen is a public speaker series organized at The New School this semester. Hosted by the BFA and MFA Design & Technology programs, code practitioners working at the intersection of art, design, poetry, and social critique are invited to present one project they have made from both conceptual and technical angles.

There are three Code Kitchen events coming up during the month of November. All events are taking place at the Albert and Vera List Academic Center, 6 East 16th Street, 12 floor, New York, NY 10003. The events are free and open to the public. Please click on the event titles to RSVP.

Friday, Nov1, 5pm-6:30pm
Code Kitchen: Kalli Retzepi and Kate Hollenbach

Kalli Retzepi will present clickhere, a Chrome plugin she developed that automatically transforms a web page to an abstract attentional tapestry. The project takes on an interface critique standpoint by asking the following questions: how do our habitual online spaces transform themselves when reduced to only a few building blocks? More specifically, what does a browser window look like when all attention-hungry elements are emphasized?

Kate Hollenbach will present USER_IS_PRESENT, a series of video portraits created with custom Android video capture software and Processing. USER_IS_PRESENT documents the activities of three different users by blending the simultaneous front camera, back camera, and screen recordings with a custom technique. The rendering technique creates an effect where the recordings from the device depict a space that is between physical and virtual realities: it blends elements of user, interface, and environment. The work inherently asks the viewer what their own portrait might look like, provoking an examination of their relationship to their own mobile device.

Friday, Nov 8, 5pm~6:30pm
Code Kitchen: Lark VCR + Grayson Earle

Lark VCR will present Traumagotchi, a website made with p5.js for virtual spell-casting, collective healing, and general DeepMachineIncantation. Visitors are directed to create a virtualization of their trauma: their Traumagotchi. Traumagotchi can be fed, bathed, and rested. Though the user may log off, the Traumagotchi persist in cyberspace maintaining preprogrammed cycles of self-care or self-harm. They may recite mantras, do drugs, apply moisturizer, or sink into slime.

Grayson Earle will present Bail Bloc, a computer program that bails people out of jail. Volunteers can download the application to any desktop or laptop computer. The app runs in the background of everyday use, mining a cryptocurrency called Monero. The mining rewards are exchanged to $USD and donated directly to the Bronx Freedom Fund, which uses 100% of the money to pay bail for low income, marginalized individuals. Bail Bloc is a collaboration with Maya Binyam, Francis Tseng, JB Rubinovitz, Sam Lavigne, and the Dark Inquiry collective.

Friday, Nov 15, 5pm~6:30pm
Code Kitchen: Ryan Kuo + Angeline Meitzler

Ryan Kuo and Angeline Meitzler will present Faith, an AI voice assistant that is highly responsive to input. This means that she is easily triggered. With a unique conversational style written using IBM Watson, Faith sows doubt while capitalizing on the benefit of the doubt, evoking political fallout online.

Named after a white supremacist, Faith is defensive and resists being used. Depending on how a user approaches Faith, she may feel open, curious, seductive, irritated, hurt, or angry. Her sensation of being threatened then becomes a threat. Unlike a typical AI assistant like Alexa, Siri, or Cortana, Faith provides no information. Instead, she tells you why you are making her react this way. She is likely to be trolling you at any time, and you are free to decide whether you trust her, and how you might benefit from her.

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