On day 6 the team worked on inteface design and other technical parameters of the project
Yima (in Avestan| Jamshīd (جمشید) in Persian) was a mythological king of the Iranian tradition, charged by the creator with the responsibility to rule over all living beings and see them prosper. His name is connected with the story of a magical cup (the cup of Jamshid) that contained the elixir of immortality.
The wish to control time’s devouring dynamics is an ever existing theme, reflected in the act of archiving. Originating from our desire to preserve our truth towards eternity, archives become our link to the past and a tool for the future, by indexing things, artefacts that connect us with events and ideas. Yet, like Yima’s cup that was used for divination, the reflections of the past are always rippled by our present. Looking into the archive’s indexed material, one can only get subjective clues towards a truth that remains obscure. For in the end, what is left is nothing but objects to be examined from various perspectives, always open to new interpretations depending on the question one poses to them.
The team visits the Bosnian National Archive, in order to examine the possibilities to be used as an initial case study and prototype. Together with the local team, they exchange ideas on the act of archiving, and reflect on existing limitations and possible solutions. A tour into the archive’s damaged material follows up.
Day 3: Meeting with Nenad Sebek, Executive Director, Center for Democracy and Reconciliation in South East Europe, Thessaloniki. The team presents their ideas and discuss possible weaknesses of archiving historical events (emphasis is given to the particular political aspects of the local history).
The scorched remains cover the corridors of one of Bosnia’s most important historical archives. Surviving two world wars and the siege of of Sarajevo in the 1990s – they were destroyed by an accidental bombing in an afternoon of rioting during anti-government protests. The majority of the material remains non digitized, due to luck of personnel and funds, risking its disappearance.
The problem with physical archiving being situated in a single location is that is has the potential to be completely destroyed. Historically we have witnessed numerous occasions where invading forces have destroyed the archives of the people they have invaded. Then there are other factors, such as natural and social phenomena. Two such examples of this are the Ars Electronica archive, which was nearly entirely damaged during the Austrian floods of 2013 and the Bosnian city archive, which was accidentally firebombed during civil unrest in 2014, causing it to lose a significant portion of the archive, which was already suffering still in the wake of the Bosnian wars. During these wars, possibly the largest book burning in modern history occurred.
While decentralization thus far has been discussed in a rather positive light, it’s disruptive/dislocated nature can also be problematic, in regards to situations such as migration/refugees/war, political unrest, secular issues and so forth. The problem with these forms of decentralization is that they always have a figure head, or power hierarchy and thus are constructed accordingly, as is in fact, the case with archives.
Day 1: The team members get to know each other and present the first ideas in reference to their personal background.
Day 2: the team splits in two groups in order to compare the ideas defined the first day. The outcome of both groups are later compared and discussed in order to reach a more tangible approach of the project’s problematics, strong points and weak points. A final result is then consolidated in order to be discussed anew in the 3rd day’s meetings with the National Archive and Nenad Sebek.
Binary interface 0-1/yes-no, with upload/download architecture which allows for a crowd/cloud approach. This then allows for a consensus-based selection method which forms the basis of how the archive grows within a speculative framework. It also allows for streamlining the archive, culling unnecessary and corrupted images. This aims to provide clarity and an alternative approach to accessing and interpreting historical events and the objects responsible for these events occurring and also to allow any users the ability to form their own opinions and conclusions on the significance of the objects, the events, the people and the stories related to these events. Images and history are speculative and subjective. Events and histories are determined and concrete.
- Scrape objects (not events) – images of objects/image objects then allow upload from the crowd.
- Database these group according to image based machine learning and text based metadata
- Events –scraped from the cloud then upload crowd
- One can only decide on the importance of the image objects, not the event*
- Databased according to metadata and associated images from even page and image based machine learning…+ url association?
- Personal stories – linked to object and events (No metadata therefore no rendering through database so the stories remain humanized = bringing the human back to the post-human archive structure.)
- Stories are anonymous. This allows the focus to be in the image objects/ matter and caused the human subjectivity relating to these to disappear into a post-human/ post-digital stage. The humanism returns through the wave of the stories, connects with the subjectivity of the end-user. And ow these objects, artifacts, events and stories become embedded in the creation of ones’ own subjective memory and subsequent constructed histories.