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CADRE Invitational 2002-2003
Interface: Software as Cultural Production
Joel Slayton on Mar 10 2003 auxiliary

What shapes an appropriate discourse of Interface?
What considerations of art are essential to this discourse?
What are the alternatives?
Where do we look to find art in a world of default software interdependencies and institutionalized software as cultural production?

Interface is the realization of software as cultural production. Whereas, capitalist views have dominated the evolution of computing, the cultural product of computing has emerged as social and political phenomena: the Interface. Until recently conceptual frameworks for Interface mirrored the utopian and blurred strategies of corporate, entertainment and military enterprise. To a large extent the ontology of computing can be traced to the protocols of interface aesthetics. Only recently have critics, theorists and artists begun to address the implications of interface outside the protological simplicities of human machine interaction. Theirs is a reckoning with the implications of software, networks, databases, computation and systems dynamics. It is recognition that interface is the software conduit of social intent.

It is useless to speak of a theory of Interface in that no single theoretical perspective is necessary or desirable. An evolving discussion is called for. It is the objective of the CADRE Invitational to establish a few humble reference points in that discussion that challenge the euphoric strategies of the software industry while looking elitism of the avant-garde in the eye. Our goal is not to entertain pre-supposed solutions or to confirm aestheticized manifestos but rather to simply consider a variety of perspectives.

The CADRE Invitational represents a yearlong series of discussions with renowned artists, theorists, curators and scientist. Topics include social and cultural inequality, the emergence of the virtual class, the economy of attention, the role of entrepreneurialism, tactical and network protocols, distributed control, authority, surveillance, cooperation models and cultural imperialism. Invitees offered a presentation to a small group of CADRE Laboratory faculty, graduate students and alumni. Each presentation was followed by an extended discussion. Session transcripts are presented here along with contributed essays from the speakers. We would like to thank Apple Computer and Cisco for their generous support.

-Joel Slayton


Peter Lunenfeld November 14th
Margret Morse November 19th
Marisa Olson November 21st
Jan Hauser November 26th
Douglas Englebart December 5th
The McCoys March 27th transcript not yet available
Geert Lovink April 21st transcript not yet available


Stephan Hechenberger
Cindy Ahuna
John Bruneau
Michael Chernobrod
Laurie Crowell
Steve Durie
Bruce Gardner
Mark Gonzales
Jenny Hager
Jennifer Henderson
Kyungwha Lee
Matt Mays
Allison Mierzykowski
James Morgan
Kanako Ota
Susan Otto
Anne-Marie Schleiner
Joel Slayton
Cortney Smyth
Brett Stalbaum
Jack Toolin
Michael Velasquez
James Yuan
Geri Wittig
Julie Ye

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last 5 articles posted by Slayton

:: CADRE Invitational 2002-2003 - Mar 10 2003

:: Collaboration as Media - Feb 1 2002

:: Entailment Mesh - Jan 18 2002

:: Ontology of Organization as System - Jan 20 2000

:: Social Software - Jan 1 2000


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