TERRAIN-01 is an interactive "artificial life" installation, a non-autonomous
one, because it is a world of autonomous cybernetic vehicles dependent on
external light energy. The plane, round TERRAIN 01 characterises its cosmos
and, at the same time, limits its horizon. The inner unconscious state of an
external observer, his brain wave pattern, controls the global state of a robot
colony, synonymous for the indissoluble crosslinking of the world of thoughts
with the world of matter.
TERRAIN 01 characterises the functional minimal form. The ideal oval vehicles
are solardriven and consequently energetically autonomous. Their world is a
plane circular disc irradiated from the outside with light. Light was chosen
deliberately as the most natural source for a local, autonomous energy supply.
Robots possess the very simplest of sensor "sensory organs" with the aid of
which they perceive each other and can move around without coming into contact,
within TERRAIN 01. In addition to the robots' basic equipment which allows them
to move freely within the colony, there is also a second sensorial system to
detect and process global light intensity changes. These are the only external
parameters in TERRAIN 01. The global light distribution changes depending on
the sensorially detected brain activity of an external observer. External and
internal worlds are simple, coupled reciprocally: the more chaotic the state of
the observer, the quieter the robot colony.
In TERRAIN 01 a colony of autonomous beings moves within a circular world. On
account of system-immanent non-linear interactions, a complex structural
formation develops with the continuous adaptation process of the individuals to
the external environmental influences. The "living" movement pattern of the
permanently active living beings lures the observer away to fantastic
psychological interpretations of their behaviour. The order states of the
dynamic system, with periodic and chaotic dynamics between the extremes of rest
and a completely random movement, characterizes the paradigm of complexity.
The whole is more than the sum of all parts.