There are several ways of dealing with the evolution of technology as part of the creative expressions of our times. One way is to regard it as a historical process and investigate similarities and differences. We tend to promote another method. An investigation of current artistic tools and activities, but related to a hypothesis of the future development of the human culture, can yield unexpected and therefore more interesting directions for development today. So apart from this hypothetical and futurist view (named hereafter 'hypo-futurist'), the core of current research has to concentrate on the maybe unanswerable question: what makes a technological creative expression artistic? Or when we reverse this question: what makes a technological object or process interesting to someone who is designing a creative activity? Research from this point of view has to be closely related to development and consequently performance, to create the necessary feedback loops for validation of either hypotheses, theories and realisations. It has an obviously action research-like profile, which tends to set up non-hierarchical activities as feedback systems, rather leading to optimalisation of processes than realizing strictly refined outcomes. Within a hypo-futurist agenda, new nodes for development and experimentation have yet to be established. Machine Centred Humanz tends to be one. We are currently setting up virtual labs (we squat others), meetings (Backwards Speech Society), and a series of collaborations with institutions supporting this new cultural-scientific agenda : Ipem Ghent, Hisk Antwerp, RIXC Riga, Theremin Centre Moscow, Keyworx/Waag Amsterdam, Hudba Berlin, Telenaut!k Hamburg, Fiftyfifty Barcelona, etc... Starting from the posthuman idea of terraformatting another planet, the construction of a natural environment elsewhere without the presence of artificial cultural artifacts is truely an outrageously idiotic enterprise. As on earth, the evolutionary creation of an alien accomodation is a process of mutual exchange and assimilation. So, transmitting atomized art and culture along with seeds has to belong to the core of the initiative. So, algorithmic art, and audiovisual synthesis is the most promising evolution in earth culture as well and has to be more extensively supported. But then the questions arise: 1. What elements, and algorithms are we going to select as input for the synthesis of a new alien culture? 2. How do we tresspass the paralysed cultural literacy debate? 3. What is evolution in culture and art, and is there still a role for narrativity, and other old 20th century obsessive clock/frame time-based stylistics? 4. Can we feel at home in a purely synthesized and experimental machinic culture, that is not related to the old earthlike environment? It is clear that we have to pick up where science and art once were divided. We have to rethink our current state of the arts, and revamp the old sciences of audio and visual perception. After the commercial take over leading to similar consumer products, it is time to shift the research program from these frozen foundations, add a cognitive science angle, define "from analysis to synthesis", and do research into new audiovisual analysis and synthesis techniques: there are many to be discovered yet! Paul Demarinis' dictum "music is sound to the ears" can easily be extended in an audiovisual common context. An additional set of interest programs are to be developed to investigate expressivity and performativity. Together with participation and interaction, these cognitive activities are basic constituents of any cultural activity, and we need to crack the code behind this through further research, experiment and development, and establish a more exact view on the relatedness to human behavior. Technological art tends to be cultural, dynamic, non-linear, multidirective, timeless and chaotic, aesthetic and most of all: autonomous!

01-09-08 - machine centered humanz