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A Brief History of New Media

Andrea Botero Cabrera & Teemu Leinonen
UIAH Media Lab, University of Art and Design Helsinki Finland






If we are to understand the extent, significance and nuances of the area we will like to develop our professional practices, historical perspectives are useful. We might understand how we came here and draw conclusions as to were to go. Wheatear you are interested in applying ICT as a medium for artistic expression or as a space for design it is usually helpful to know, not only some boring facts about technology, but also the circumstances that produce them. How it was developed? How widely it is spread around? Who are using them, who used them before and why?

New Media is a multidisciplinary and multiperspective field. This series of lectures are intended to generate a share understanding between different professionals of some of the phenomena related to New Media. The objective is to discover some shared vocabulary and common ground.

We will explore some of the relevant issues introduced though names (artists, designers, scientists, etc.), institutions and technologies (hardware, applications / software) which have made an impact in the development of the field. As part of the course students are asked to carry out hands-on exercises related to the themes. In previous years students have produced their own "timeline" project around a theme in a hypermedia format.

NOTE: There are some asigned readings for each day. the articles are selected from New Media Reader book available in ARALIS library and in our own library.

Basic Numbers and Milestones

By Andrea Botero & Teemu Leinonen

Reflect for a moment on this slice of time, here. Where we are right now in numbers? A short tour into some numbers helps to clarify the scale. We want to make sure that we all agree in some very basic facts that are somehow relevant to our practice. To ilustrate this point we will check the Basic Numbers [pdf].

The GVU WWW User Survey
Since 1994 the GVU Center, College of Computing, Georgia Institute of Technology have made user survey on the growth and trends in Internet usage.

Internet usage numbers
[http://cyberatlas.internet.com/] Numbers about "the world's online population" .

As a way to introduce 3 converging or overlapping areas that present aspects of "New Media" we will take a look to a Timeline-collage [pdf] of some milestones in each of them.


03.10. 10-16 (Mon) Intro + New Media _ Mediation and augmentation

04.10. 10-16 (Tue) Early Days: Computing, Media and Media Computer

05.10. 10-16 (Wed) Personal Media (?)

06.10. 10-16 (Thu) Network + Media Art

To Be defined: Final presentation

Detailed programme

Check the course "blog"
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