Executing liveness: An examination of the live dimension of code inter-actions in software (art) practice (PhD project)

With today¹s prevalence of technology enormous quantities of data are generated and disseminated in real-time through a highly networked, programmable and distributed environment. Networks of machines and the circulation of data mediate our sense of time. The sensation of Œliveness¹ is deeply reconfigured by complex technological infrastructures behind ubiquitous screens and interfaces. This thesis explores how real-time computation reconfigures this immanent sense of liveness, specifically in relation to contemporary software art and culture. By focusing on the live dimension of code inter-actions this thesis examines the complexity of our current computational environment as evident in the increasing use of data queries, the instantaneous transmission of data streams and the seamless running of automated agents.

A materialist framework for liveness is presented with the use of three main vectors, namely: unpredictability, micro-temporality and automation.

This facilitates the unfolding of the assemblages of things and relations that have emerged through the inter-actions of code across various computational layers at multiple scales. The analysis and discussion contributes to a widening of critical attention to software (art) studies primarily in terms of its distinct focus on the live dimension of code.

Furthermore, it expands the debate in media and performance studies, providing technical description and analysis in relation to the concept of liveness. In overall terms, the research contributes to our understanding of software by expanding our understanding of liveness in contemporary culture. This includes a nuanced examination of liveness beyond immediate human reception.


List of papers:

  • Soon, W., 2017. ŒExecuting Micro-temporality¹ in Executing Practices (E.Snodgrass, H. Pritchard and M. Tyzlik-Carver eds), Autonomedia.
  • Samson et al., 2017. ³Execution² in Posthuman Glossary (R. Braidotti and M. Hlavajova eds), Bloomsbury Academic.
  • Soon, W., 2016. ³Interfacing with questions: The unpredictability of live queries in the work of ŒThousand Questions¹. ICLI2016 Conference Proceedings.
  • Chung, B, Pong, L & Soon, W., 2016. ŒComputer Programming Education and Creative Arts¹. ISEA2016 Conference Proceedings.
  • Soon, W., 2016. ŒMicrotemporalities: At The Time of Loading-in-progress¹. ISEA2016 Conference Proceedings.
  • Soon, W & Pritchard, H., 2016. ³If I wrote you a love letter would you write back? ­ and thousands of other questions <http://collection.eliterature.org/3/work.html?work=if-I-wrote-you-a-love-letter>", in The Electronic Literature Collection, Volume 3. ",>ISSN: 1932-2016. Web.
  • Soon, W., 2015. How To [Manipulate] The Mao Experience Through InternetŠ  <http://www.manipulations.info/how-to-get-the-mao-experience-through-internet/>Manipulations/Platform. Web.
  • Soon, W., 2015. ŒZombification: the living dead of spam <http://www.aprja.net/?p=2471>Œ. APRJA. Transmediale & Aarhus University.Vol4, no.1. Web.
  • Soon. W., 2015. ŒZombies as the living dead¹ in Datafied Research: A Peer Reviewed Newspaper, Christian Ulrik Andersen, Geoff Cox (eds.)Aarhus: Digital Aesthetics Research Center, Aarhus University, Berlin:reSource transmedial culture Berlin/transmediale. ISBN: 87-91810-26-4