On the Language of Internet Memes

an arts-based educational research dissertation in arts & visual culture education

Deconstruction for Glitch as Poetry

  • Glitch as Poetry
  • This image was grabbed from here on 10.25.2012:
  • It is part of a transcription of a conference I was involved in on 9.18.2012, which dealt with pedagogical practices regarding new media art.
  • The transcription has been generated by Youtube’s transcribing tool and it is somewhat inaccurate.
  • What was actually said is (in spanish): “El glitch, es error, es errar, es desviar, es rastrear, es encontrar, es aprender” (the glitch is error, is to be errant, is to deviate, is to trace, is to find, is to learn).
  • The resulting transcription is the result of a randomly inaccurate, glitchy transcribing tool.
  • It was glitched by randomly (and increasingly) inserting the phrase [GLITCH_AS_POETRY] into its alphanumeric values:

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

  • An animated GIF was created to serve as centerpiece:

    Centerpiece for the Glitch as Poetry portrait

  • A PDF file containing the intervened alphanumeric values of the images above was then converted into image files.
  • The alphanumeric values for these images were themselves intervened by substituting specific characters with the word [Poetry]:
  • The resulting images were then mixed in with the original files in order to create an animated GIF that served as the background:

    Background for the Glitch as Poetry portrait

Suggested follow up questions:

  • What are the implications of inaccurate transcriptions being considered poetry?
  • Why is Youtube’s transcription tool capable of being inaccurate?
  • How can Youtube’s transcription tool be compared and contrasted with the practice of translating poetry?
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Deconstruction for Glitch as Deceit

  • Glitch as Deceit
  • These frames were grabbed from this video on 10.25.2012:
  • In the video, a BBC newscast mistakenly uses the logo for the fictitious United Nations Space Command [from the first-person videogame shooter Halo] when referencing the very real United Nations Security Council. You can read more about it here.
  • It is unknown why frames 2 & 3 are displayed as glitches, the original source-video from Youtube contained several similar frames.
  • Not only are two of these images displayed as glitches themselves, but they also make reference to an erroneous, glitchy research process on the part of whoever was in charge of finding the graphic.
  • In a sense these images and the story behind them are an example of a glitch that transcended digital media.
  • The frame grabs were glitched by randomly inserting the phrase [GLITCH_AS_DECEIT] into their alphanumeric values:

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

  • An animated GIF was created to serve as centerpiece:

    Centerpiece for the Glitch as Deceit portrait

  • A PDF file containing the intervened alphanumeric values of the images above was then converted into image files.
  • The alphanumeric values for these images were themselves intervened by substituting specific characters with the word [Deceit]:
  • The resulting images were then mixed in with the original files in order to create an animated GIF that served as the background:

    Background for the Glitch as Deceit portrait

Suggested follow up questions:

  • Who is deceiving who?
  • Can real-world occurrences [as opposed to virtual-world instances] truly be considered glitches?
  • What are the implications of the concept of a meta-glitch?

Deconstruction for Glitch as Destination

  • Glitch as Destination
  • This image was produced by Google Maps when queering for directions from point A to point B on 7.19.2012:
  • It is unknown why the the route was displayed as a glitch.
  • It was further glitched by randomly, and increasingly inserting the phrase [GLITCH_AS_DESTINATION] into their alphanumeric values:

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

  • An animated GIF was created to serve as centerpiece:

    Centerpiece for the Glitch as Destination portrait

  • A PDF file containing the intervened alphanumeric values of the images above was then converted into image files.
  • The alphanumeric values for these images were themselves intervened by substituting specific characters with the word [Destination]:
  • The resulting images were then mixed in with the original files in order to create an animated GIF that served as the background:

    Background for the Glitch as Destination portrait

Suggested follow up questions:

  • Is all mapping subjected to human [or otherwise] error?
  • Are all maps specifically designed for a specific purpose?
  • Is mapping an end [a destination] in itself?

Deconstruction for Glitch as Journey

  • Glitch as Journey
  • These photographs were taken with a digital camera mounted below a bicycle’s handle bar as it was ridden through the streets of Tucson, AZ on the early morning of 10.27.2012:
         
  • The photographs were chosen for their abstract qualities, which render an otherwise concrete [both metaphorically and literally speaking] environment into a liquid, glitchy representation.
  • In many senses the very act of using a bicycle to commute within an urban area specifically designed for motorized transportation could be considered errant behavior since it is likely to compel the commuter to look for alternate, roundabout routes that favor safety over productivity.
  • Much like glitches these alternate routes also allow the commuter to explore and understand the urban space in unintended manners.
  • The images were glitched by randomly inserting the phrase [GLITCH_AS_JOURNEY] into their alphanumeric values:

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

  • An animated GIF was created to serve as centerpiece:

    Centerpiece for the Glitch as Journey portrait

  • A PDF file containing the intervened alphanumeric values of the images above was then converted into image files.
  • The alphanumeric values for these images were themselves intervened by substituting specific characters with the word [Journey]:
  • The resulting images were then mixed in with the original files in order to create an animated GIF that served as the background:

    Background for the Glitch as Journey portrait

Suggested follow up questions

  • What relationships to space are created depending on the form of transversing it?
  • Can urban space be glitched?
  • What would an urban space specifically designed for biking look like?
  • How can this relate to the notion of the glitch?

The Getty Information Institute: A Retrospective

Publisher’s note: Since the early 1980s, the J. Paul Getty Trust has been a pioneer in applying computing to art history information. Recently these activities have been carried out by the Getty Information Institute, directed by Eleanor Fink. Following a change of leadership, the trust has decided to close the institute in June this year. To commemorate the end of its very successful initiatives and programs, D-Lib Magazine invited Eleanor Fink to write the following retrospective survey of the institute and its achievements.

http://www.dlib.org/dlib/march99/fink/03fink.html

Deconstruction for Glitch as Design

  • Glitch as Design
  • This image was grabbed from here on 10.25.2012:
  • It is a collection of creatively designed 404 error messages.
  • They have all been designed as responses to website visitors that for some reason or another click on a hyperlink that is no longer active or whose target has been removed.
  • They are programmed responses for potential errant, glitchy behavior on the part of website visitors.
  • It was glitched by randomly (and increasingly) inserting the phrase [GLITCH_AS_DESIGN] into its alphanumeric values:

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

  • An animated GIF was created to serve as centerpiece:

    Centerpiece for the Glitch as Design portrait

  • A PDF file containing the intervened alphanumeric values of the images above was then converted into image files.
  • The alphanumeric values for these images were themselves intervened by substituting specific characters with the word [Design]:
  • The resulting images were then mixed in with the original files in order to create an animated GIF that served as the background:

    Animated GIF that served as background for the Glitch as Design portrait

Suggested follow up questions:

  • Why must website designers account for errant behavior and incorporate error message within their site designs?
  • As a website visitor, how is your experience altered by encountering a creatively designed error message instead of a generic-looking one?
  • How do you react to the idea of “designing an error”?

Deconstruction for Glitch as Failure

  • Glitch as Failure
  • This error message was the result of a google search conducted on 11.16.2011

    414 error

  • In a sense, the error message is a predetermined response to a glitch in the Google process.
  • The message was then glitched by randomly (and increasingly) inserting the phrase [GLITCH_AS_FAILURE] into its alphanumeric values:

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

    Click to download a PDF with the intervened alphanumeric values.

  • An animated GIF was created to serve as the centerpiece:

    Centerpiece for the Glitch as Failure portrait

  • A  PDF file containing the intervened alphanumeric values of the images above was then converted into image files.
  • The alphanumeric values for these images were themselves intervened by substituting specific characters with the word [Failure]:
  • The resulting images were then mixed in with the original files in order to create an animated GIF that served as the background:

    Background for the Glitch as Failure portrait

Suggested follow up questions:

  • What does a searching failure due to having enter a search term “too long to process” suggest about the process by which Google conducts searches?
  • What notions and reflections are conjured up by the image of a cartoon robot attempting to fix itself?
  • Have you tried searching on Google for the term [failure]?