SIMPLICITY - the art of complexity - ARS ELECTRONICA 2006 - Festival für Kunst, Technologie und Gesellschaft - Linz, Do 31. August – Di 5. September






Exhibitions  |  posted by  Cornelia Sulzbacher  |  at 09:15:00

Photographs of the 2006 Festival

Equilibrium<br><br><br>© Media Arsonists

At the Ars Electronica picture archive, you can now view and download great shots of this year's Festival. Click it on and check it out!

Picture Archive


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 18:30:00

Media lab thanks!

From the monastery..© Miikka Junnila

The show is getting closer to it's end, only half an hour to go. All in all, it's been a good week, the Beta Lounge Exhibition has had lots of visitors and some people have even given feedback on the works and shown interest in general. It's also always interesting to observe people using the interactive works, one learns much about usability issues and about how people think in different ways.

Also the Ars Electronica as a whole has been very interesting, with lots of things to see and still maintaining a very high quality. At times it felt that there is almost too much to see, as it always takes some time to process all new things one sees. The day in the countryside was very nice, taking a bit of distance to the city and the exhibitions, but still somehow combining Ars Electronica themes to the old monastery setting.

Soon we start packing our machines and preparing to fly back to Helsinki. We're a bunch of tired but happy people. A big thanks for all the visitors of our exhibition, and Ars Electronica organizers for taking us here. It was a joy!

-Miikka Junnila


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 16:00:00

Ars Electronica Center

It might be obvious to some, but with all the activities all around the city, one still should not forget to visit the Ars Electronica Centre. Very cool stuff there, one (at least kids) can try flying over a city much like a bird for example. And there are every nice virtual avatars in boxes that you can plug to different machines and transfer the creatures there. Go check it, if you haven't already.


e-lobby  |  posted by  Cornelia Sulzbacher  |  at 09:15:00

FM4 Live from Ars Electronica in Linz

The Brucknerhaus in Linz will serve as a broadcast studio for radio station FM4 September 1-3.

FM4 will accompany Ars’ digital investigations this year even more intensively than in the past: the station is setting up a full-blown remote location in the electrolobby to deliver three full afternoons of on-site, on-the-air reportage. Gerlinde Lang will moderate FM4 Connected (2-5 PM) live from the Brucknerhaus beginning on Friday.

So tune in! Or even better: drop by and check it out in person at the FM4 Lounge in the electrolobby!


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 23:13:00

Up and running!

We're here, and Ars Electronica has been given birth to already. This message is almost straight from the harbor of Linz, where the party is still going, but the short nights needed for building up the Beta Lounge exhibition forced some people like me to come to the hotel a bit earlier.

I'm in a serious need of sleep, but as a short report, the opening of our exhibition went well. Thanks for all the people interested who showed up, and for those who haven't been there yet, welcome! In the center of Linz, on the side of the Hauptplatz, check out the big banners of the Beta Lounge Exhibition..

-Miikka Junnila


Conferences  |  posted by   |  at 02:15:00 goes Linz


just a few days left until the festival and we finally opened up for Linz.
there is a map with all the festival-relevant sites that waits to be filled with tags.

the happy ones with a compatible mobile camera phone can install GLASS, shoot tags and get augmented!

looking forward to seeing you in Linz!
kai&philipp AE festival map
download GLASS from activeprint


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 20:00:00

Already in Austria

© Ilpo Kari

Well, we who already are in Austria haven't had time to make blog entries but instead, you can find some pictures at Blogging there doesn't require writing...

Anyway, everything is going smoothly, so far. See you in Austria!


Media Lab Helsinki's photos


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 15:40:00

Almost in Austria

© Miikka Junnila

A couple of days more. We are ready. Suddenly everyone is saying "See you in Austria" instead of "See you tomorrow", and the exitement over the whole happening is rising. The brochure of our exhibition got out of print last week, and is also coming there soon. But for everyone interested in the Beta Lounge Exhibition, see the old messages of this blog, as our projects have their descriptions there. But the best way is naturally to actually come to the exhibition and experience it all...So see you there next week!

-Miikka Junnila


Events, Concerts & Performances   |  posted by  StWSt   |  at 09:15:00

Jonocchio is here! From 3rd to 5th September all day long in front of the Stadtwerkstatt


After travelling through Italy, France, Spain and Grmany he finally found his way to Linz. From the 3rd to the 5th of September you have the chance to see the only discovered nordic “Schluckwal”. This species eats everything, including a bus and it´s owner, who will invite all her visitors into the belly of the wale, where you can look at all the wonderful objects the wale collected and listen to stunning stories from their journey.

an exhibition from Cimi Czimek
3rd to 5th September all day long in front of the STWST.
4rd September 20:00 h delicious fishsoup is served.



Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 15:25:00

Be part of the Global Dignity Project. Join the Dignity Nation!

Dignity Nation is a virtual nation that will be officially revealed in Ars Electronica. But you can apply your passport already.

Goto and sign the Dignity Principles to get the citizenship.

Shortly about the project:
Dignity Nation is a community of people who have joined Global Dignity Project by signing the Dignity Principles. The idea of Dignity Nation is to show just how important the values of Dignity are and that they are commonly shared by all people in all cultures. Join the ever growing movement, give your voice also a face and be part of the change!

Dignity Nation is the movement of the 21st century. It uses the power of the web to bring like minded people into one ongoing virtual demonstration for Dignity!

The mission of the Dignity Project is to implement globally the universal right of every human being to lead a dignified life. This is a paradigm shift in thinking about our global challenges, a new language and a mindset to approach issues of poverty, peace, and progress.

Largely, we know the main problems of global development. The issue is to be able to phrase them in a language and with metaphors that inspire action. The formulation of this new language is the task of the Dignity Project. It is formulating a globally shared dream to unite the development, joining the forces of public, private, and citizen sectors.

Kalle Määttä

Global Dignity Project


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 11:45:00

There's a kind of hush...

Media lab full of boxes.© Miikka JunnilaHeavy machinery coming up.© Miikka Junnila

Still one and a half week before leaving Helsinki. But something is happening, alright...Computers are disappearing from Media lab, and there are weird boxes all around. And some people walk around and look quite busy. Now there may be a connection to Ars Electronica.

The last tweakings of the projects are going on. But always, always there have to be some things that are done in the last minute. Because of the difficult transportability of modeling clay statues our game project Snowman in Hell has to be ready to perfect its nondigital exhibition pieces right on location. But knowing that the game itself is ready already makes one feel quite safe anyway.

I hope there will be some more game related stuff at Ars Electronica this year in general. I'm sure the new media arts could have things to give to the growing games industry, where new approaches and fresh point of view would be needed. There are for example some nice multimodal interfaces to games also at the Campus Exhibition, and the possibilities of this kind of new interaction should be further researched. It's a pity if the experiments of the art world are not known to game developers, and also the other way around.

Well, whatever the impact of Ars Electronica and our Campus exhibition to the global game development scene or any other – we are coming there soon.

-Miikka Junnila


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 20:49:00

The Beer Exchange Stand on the road

© Kati Åberg

The Beer Exchange Stand (powered by Consumer Gadget) got finished way before the deadline and is now on it's way to foreign land. Special thanks to Toni Lemberg and Ville Repo who know about wood and paint and stuff, not just about hyped mobile technologies.

The Beer Exchange Stand comes to help with people having difficulties choosing the (morally) right beer. I think it's nicer to tell about Consumer Gadget (the actual work) via beer.

Wesa Aapro / Consumer Gadget


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 11:35:00

The Finnish road show

Mikko at his work room with the Animaatiokone boxes<br>© Kati ÅbergThe fully grown Animaatiokone has come out of its case©

So the great Finnish road show is gearing up - ready to hit the road soon! Last Friday we picked up bits and pieces from around Helsinki in preparation for packing them onto a truck this week - headed for Linz. 25 cubic meters of media art coming right up!

One stop was to pick up the Animaatiokone -machine. Three travel-worn cases out of which Mikko and Perttu will hatch the futuristic animation machine Animaatiokone in Linz... How do you explain these things to custom officers and insurance agents anyway... Or how do you explain an art project in words to anyone? Better just come and have a go at it when the show opens! Step right up ladies and gentlemen, step righ up!

Kati Åberg


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 17:00:00


Molly asking herself: PAL or NTSC? <br>Picture from the interactive short film <br>Molly | Case<br><br>© Molly | Case

There are days when you get e-mails saying: Is it PAL or is it NTSC? What about square pixels? And so on...I don't know about you, but I consider those days bad. I have a faint memory that PAL was the standard we used for the Molly | Case -project, but now that was already some time ago – like two years – and I'm really not sure.

The technical problems bring other memories too. Especially the last two nights in the editing room, when the deadline was so near and there was no escape. A sweet sense of sharing that desperation with the others in that little room was somehow beautiful. At three o'clock the first night we started singing, good night and good morning, don't give up yet...And there was the midi guitar we brought from audio edit room too, only the camp fire with the flames reaching for the starlit sky and shadows dancing everywhere missing from the scene.

That was the first of the two nights, and weren't really tired yet. But now that was a long time ago. Now the final results will be available for all of you at Ars Electronica Campus Exhibition. This was the first advertisement of our interactive film and also a part of the commentary track about the film, if one is ever made. All these memories brough up by the familiar but always as unpleasant question: PAL or NTSC?

Well, while trying to sort this out to get a finalized version of the DVD ready for Linz, I hope Ars Electronica won't be about PAL or NTSC, but about those magical moments that happen in life somehow, sometimes.

-Miikka Junnila

PS. Good luck with Rio de Janeiro, Noora...How did you end up there? :)


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 09:15:00

Ola, Hello from Rio de Janeiro!

Greetings from Rio de Janeiro!
Hope Molly and Case presentation works well
and peoples finds some love inside the enormous amount of pixels
around the Campus.
Here I will soon walk to my temporary home from
the campus of PUC-University. I see the beautiful lights
of the city in Lagoa and it is warm evening as always.
Here I dont carry my mac to university and back every day,
becouse too meny has lost their property here.
write some experience or feedback, what you get there from the works!

Noora Ojala
exchanging Molly&Case artist


Conferences  |  posted by  Maria Hieslmayr  |  at 16:21:00

Simplicity Symposium II

Simplicity Symposium II<br><br>© Sabine Starmayr

Jason Kottke (US) is a well-known American blogger and former Webdesigner. He created the enormously popular Silkscreen font that is widely used in the field of Web design. In March 1998, Kottke launched his blog that has gone on to become one of the highest-ranked personal sites in the blogging ecosystem.

Gary Chang (CN) founded his company EDGE in 1994. His commercial commissions include clubhouse, retail space, hotel, restaurant, office, yacht and aircraft interiors as well as product designs. The Suitcase House at the Commune by the GreatWall (a luxury hotel in China), the Kung-Fu Teaset for Alessi, and his own apartment in Hong Kong are his
best-known design projects.

Olga Goriunova (RU) is an artist, art scholar, co-organizer of the
Read_Me Festival and co-founder of the website.

Eric Yeatman (US) has been a member of the academic staff of the Imperial College in London since 1989. He is currently professor of microengineering and assistant director of the college’s research group in that field. He has been manager of two large EU research collaborations, and principal or co-investigator on 12 research council and several industry-supported projects, and has published more that 60 scholarly papers on materials for integrated optics as well as on
microfabrication and radio frequency MEMS.

1. 9.
15:00 - 18:00
Brucknerhaus,Mittlerer Saal
Simplicity Symposium II

15:00 - 15:15 Intro John Maeda
15:15 - 15:45 Jason Kottke
15:45 - 16:15 Gary Chang
16:15 - 16:30 Pause
16:30 - 17:00 Olga Goriunova
17:00 - 17:30 Eric Yeatman
17:30 - 18:00 Diskussion
Moderator: John Maeda


Conferences  |  posted by  Maria Hieslmayr  |  at 10:13:00

Simplicity Symposium I

Simplicity Symposium I<br><br><br><br><br><br><br>© rubra

Sam Hecht (UK) studied industrial design at Central St. Martin’s College of Arts and Design and received his degree in industrial design from the Royal College of Art in London. He has been the recipient of numerous prizes, and his list of clients includes Muji.

Walter Bender (US) heads the Gray Matters working group that deals with technology's impact on an increasingly elderly population. He is member of the MIT Media Lab’s SIMPLICITY Project, Things That Think and the Digital Life Consortium. Bender is currently president of the software and content division of One Laptop Per Child, a non-profit organization that is developing a technology designed to revolutionize how the world’s children are educated.

Paola Antonelli (US) is curator of the architecture and design department at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York. Her “Mutant Materials in Contemporary Design” exhibition (1995) garnered high praise. Her latest offering “SAFE: Design Takes on Risk” (2005) deals with objects that aim to protect our bodies and souls.

Hugh Herr (US) is Associate Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at the MIT Media Lab. His research activities concentrate on ways in which principles derived from muscle mechanics, neuronal control and human biomechanics can be applied to the development of biomimetic robots and rehab devices.

1. 9.
10:30 - 13:30
Brucknerhaus,Mittlerer Saal
Simplicity Symposium I

10:30 - 10:45 Intro John Maeda
10:45 - 11:15 Sam Hecht
11:15 - 11:45 Walter Bender
11:45 - 12:00 Pause
12:00 - 12:30 Paola Antonelli
12:30 - 13:00 Hugh Herr
13:00 - 13:30 Diskussion
Moderator: John Maeda


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 18:15:00


On the behalf of our headquarter team I want to say moi moi to everyone. Can't wait to come to Linz...wunderbahn...mahtavaa...

I am very much wondering all ready how are the elevators in Austria... can't wait to test them.

Up and down,

Helena H.


Events, Concerts & Performances   |  posted by  Maria Hieslmayr  |  at 16:52:00


Klangpark<br><br><br><br><br><br><br>© Sabine Starmayr

Music for a landscape-for the Danube and the riverside park adjacent to the Brucknerhaus-is the leitmotif of this year's Klangpark.
A high-performance loudspeaker system delivering superb sound reproduction will be set up to provide an optimal listening experience throughout the alfresco concert venue.
The piece selected for the 2006 Klangpark is Robert Ashley's “Music with Roots in the Aether,” an exciting approach to staging a musical project and combining it with visual forms of expression.


Campus  |  posted by  Beta Lounge Artists   |  at 09:15:00

The Finns prepare for the Danube

Tommi and Michihito discuss the placement of Michihito's work at the Media Lab Campus command centre<br>© Kati Åberg

And suddenly it’s August! In less than three weeks the “first wave” from Finland will hit the shores of the Danube and the building and setting up of “the Beta Lounge”, the Campus exhibition of Ars Electronica will start at the University of Arts Linz.

As the time draws nearer, activity here in Finland increases. The exhibition architect Tuomas Toivonen finalizes the plans for setting up the exhibitioin, our graphic designer Nene Tsuboi and I make final alterations to the Campus Exhibition catalogue and send it to the printers, and at the Media Lab Helsinki command centre for the Ars Electronica Campus Exhibition (in the image), artist Michihito Mizutani discusses the set-up of his work with Campus Exhibition technical coordinator Tommi Jauhiainen.

So I'm wondering, what does a girl pack along for a 3 week trip to Austria anyway? Apart from 20 computers and screens and about 2km:s of wires...

Kati Åberg



© Ars Electronica Center Linz Museumsgesellschaft mbH, Impressum,