Thank you for your interest in a new technologist or programmer. While every effort has been made to bring you a defect free instrument with the latest technology, don’t bet on it. Communication between new media artists and the technology minded seems like a straightforward endeavor as they presumably share the same common language but, in truth, that’s not always the case. Like working with any evil genie or the devil, you will need to be very particular about how you phrase your request to the programmer or technologist. Using technical jargon can slow things down appreciably as the programmer/technologist is required to use such words with precision, and will be compelled to explain such terms at great length when they are not used correctly. Likewise, being much too specific about requirements can eliminate interesting possibilities or conversely, lead to an error condition whereby some elements will eventually found to require technology that “simply isn’t possible” with current (or even possibly future) technology. Erring in the opposite direction is even worse -– using a vague or general description tends to put any development on hold until a concrete goal becomes clear. Where’s the common ground then? The language many artists and technologists have in common is pictures. block diagrams, structural illustrations, charts, maps, schematics, stick figures, etc. Draw first, ask questions later. This gives way to a lengthy series of discussions and drawings, tests, fixes, and new features but expectations don’t always align – questions arise of creative input and when, for example, is the project is finally complete. This guide presents one limited perspective navigating the artist/technologist collaboration from the other side.
- Ed Dambik, Advanced Visualization Lab, Indiana university, US
Full text (PDF) p. 61-64