Course Offerings

Prof. Barbara Junge

Entwurfsprojekt im Hauptstudium

Machines for Future – from counterproductive to protest Machines

Communication Guerilla / Communication Machines / Protest Machines / Error Machines / Adbusting / Reclaim the data / Technoshamanism / Culture Jamming / Low Tech Retro Communication Machines

INCOM --->

Meanwhile, the Greens are ahead of the CDU in polls. Pushed forward by Fridays for Future, the citizens seem far ahead of politics. Driving diesel is the new smoking, a new protest culture is emerging. Protest movements have always been an important civic contribution to political participation and thus to the transformation of cultural and value systems.

We think this is great and we don‘t want to stand idly by. We would like to try to throw sand into the gears. We are interested in inventing new tools on the border between art and activism for networking, communication and protest. These can be new ways to make problems interactively visible and understandable, data collecting bots or new communication machines (physical or virtual) to actively interfere in public space. The medium – but also the theme – of our protest are hardware and software machines: Physical Computing or networked Apps.

We are planning an exhibition in April where we want to present the results.

Machine culture
When the ancient Greeks spoke about “techne”—they did not differentiating between art and technology. While design under contemporary conditions has becoming omnipresent (and has mostly the function of aestheticization) machines have always been ambivalent. They relieve us of work and they take away our work. They store enormous knowledge and amputate us at the same time. AI reproduces our thought structures and thus unnoticed our prejudices. Due to the polished interface surfaces, errors & manipulations become less and less verifiable - an almost religious belief in data and technological progress remains. What was once promised to us as a happy, networked world has brought a seemingly incompatible social division into the various filter bubbles and, moreover, a loss of self-determination and human dignity. The enormous computing capacities are being used to waste resources instead of using them profitably. So... is it time for a new wave of machine breakers, like it was the idea of the Luddites, english textile workers in the 19th century?

Protest culture
Protest is a multi-faceted social phenomenon that not only manifests itself in the form of social movements and political organizations, but also in personal initiative, grassroot activism and new forms of artistic expression. It is an independent cultural domain whose aesthetics, practices and narratives are themselve regularly re-used and counteracted by the media, advertisers and even political actors.

We are interested in subversive and innovative forms of protest, such as communication guerrilla, in which information or disinformation is specifically used to achieve goals. For example the „Google bomb“ came up in 1999 when the search term „more evil than satan himself“ was used to refer to Microsoft‘s website. In culture jamming, strategies from conventional product advertising are adopted, caricatured and sometimes led to absurdity, e.g. the magazine Adbusters ( tries to use attention as the main resource of the media society to rebel against the terror of the consumer society. However, we are also interestred in concrete tools that can be repoduced, copied and further developed by activists themselves.

Workflow + technical Support
At the beginning of the Semester we are planning a physical Computing Intro by Elena Falomo. Here the first hurdles of the design with sensors and actuators & programming are to be taken. Elena will continue to accompany the course for the critical development of the results. Additionally Julian Adenauer will held an Intro into Bot Programmining – datadriven Programmining with APIs for screenbased and networked Websites or Apps.

Time + Place
Monday 10 o‘clock:
weekly fixed meeting date (normally until about 15h, but pls block the whole day),
group or individual consultations
Wednesday 10 – 13 o‘clock: if required

In the timetable you find some Milestones. These Milestones (in form of a Presentation and a PDF) beside a final documentation, are mandatory for getting the grade for this project.

Wintersemester 2019/2020

2. Studienabschnitt

alle Studiengänge


Location : Komm, C1.02

Number of participants : 0 (0)

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