Life Writer (2006)
Life Writer consits of an old-style type writer that evokes the area of analogue text processing. In addition a normal piece of paper is used as projection screen and the position of the projection is always matched with the position of the type writer roll. When users type text into the keys of the type writer, the resulting letters appear as projected characters on the normal paper. When users then push the carriage return, the letters on screen transform into small black and white artificial life creatures that appear to float on the paper of the type writer itself. The creatures are based on genetic algorithms where text is used as the genetic code that determines the behaviour and movements of the creatures. The algorithms were developed for one of our previpus works called Life Spacies and here the text functions as genetic code for the creation of artifical life creatures.
As in the Life Spacies system the artificial creatures created by the act of typing can be faster or slower depending on their genetic code and body shape. All of the artificial life creatures also need to eat text in order to stay alive and when users type a new text the creatures will quickly try to snap up these characters from the paper in order to get energy. Once creatures have eaten enough text they can also reproduce and have off-spring so eventuelly the screen can become very full when creatures a fed well.
The user can also push the creatures around when using the scroll of the typing machines cylinder. She can for example push the creatures back into the machine which will crush them or scroll the creatures off the screen alltogether, making new place for new creatures.
By connecting the act of typing to the act of creation of life, Life Writer deals with the idea of creating an open-ended artwork where user-creature and creature-creature interaction become essential to the creation of digital life and where an emergent systems of life-like art emerges on the boundaries between analog and digital worlds.
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Life Spacies I & II (1997-1999)
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MobileFeelings I & II (2003-2004)
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Life Writer (2006)
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