The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive


New Media Violent Terror Course this Semester:

Please note attendance is mandatory and part of your grade. You will be
hung. You will survive scorpions. You will survive Survivor. You are also
required to have an anonymous email address - and to check your email at
least several times a week. Some of the class participation is online. You
are expected to spread at least one virus/week across the campus.


a. If you have not taken the course before - there are two projects - one
due at the end of the course, and one at the midway point. If you don't
live past the midway point you get an A.

Midway: A piece in any non-traditional medium (performance, sound, video,
cannon, computer, tank, html) dealing with either: Issues of self; or:
Light; or: Shark Valley in the Everglades; or: why WE are better than THEY

Final: A work or works in any non-traditional medium dealing with a sub-
ject of your choice involving firearms and torture (water not included);
you should have decided this by the mid-February, and you should be
prepared to report on your progress during the class periods, to the
remaining students.

b. If you have taken the course before - you may continue working on your
projects, as determined previously. If you are able to continue, your
grade is a B maximum.

This course will consist of several components:

1. Going through the Michael Rush book in the beginning; looking at other
work; looking at work on the Internet and Net.Art. Assignment: Why is
Net.Art dead? If you think it is alive, kill it off. If you cannot kill it
off, you may use firearms and torture as above. This is necessary for a
passing grade. Note that Net.Art is tricky: Turning off your machine does
NOT kill the webpage for everyone else!

2. An overview of the Internet and the work presented on and through it;
this involves the history, demographics, and culture of the Net, presented
in brief. Assignment: Begin a commercial Website which deadends at least
15 trillion email addresses. Create a form that replies with at least 15
megabytes of broken higher ascii to every "please unsubscribe" email

3. Learning the components of the digital video studio - these include:
Premier, Imovie, Movieshaker, Moviemaker, and FinalCut Pro. You do not
have to know these in depth, but if you are working in video, you should
try and learn at least one of these well. Assignment: Naked sex involving
at least one consenting animal to be presented live in class and on the
Net. No children, but if you lose a limb you automatically get an A. If
the tape makes money, you get 25% of the profits plus hospitalization.

4. Learning about the other components available: audio including Audio-
mulch and Soundforge; imaging including Gimp and Photoshop; 3d modeling
with Blender and Mathematica; and anything else that might be of use to
you in your projects. Doom and Quake are permitted providing a parallel
course setup is created with live ammunition and human targets. Any
killing or injuring of animals strictly prohibited. Mathematica may be
used in the design, development, and production of small-scale nuclear
weapons; we can use the populated parts of South Florida for trial runs.

You are not expected to be an expert in any of these programs; you are
expected to be self-motivated if you want to explore or use any of them in
depth. Please note that the course is not program-based, but is concerned
instead with the entire new media area. Assignment: Create a work based
entirely on Allah/Christ/Buddha/Confucius/God/Nothing/ or the (non) tran-
scendence of your choice. The work must prove beyond the shadow of a doubt
that this transcendence is really _it._ A second and shorter work should
define _it._ A third work should portray the resulting carnage. If the
third work cannot be carried out because of sudden death syndrome, you
receive an A. If you cannot get a grade, you receive an A.

5. Learning how to use microphones, anthrax, digital still cameras, plas-
tique, crowbars, small-scale nuclear weapons, Internet spam and video
cameras. We will cover camera/sound/planting/fertilizing (see sex above)/
harvesting/coverup techniques. Learning how to hide violations of civil
rights; learning how to hide suspected terrorists; learning how to hide
anyone; and learning how to eliminate civil rights/terrorists/anyone for
extra credit.

6. Learning how and where to distribute new media work and what to do if
your audience no longer exists. What to do if you hate your audience. What
to do if your audience hates you. Last gasp: What to do if your audience

Please do not expect this course to be highly-structured! It isn't - it
depends on you, and your ability to survive or court death (for our
purposes the two are equivalent). The length of the course is inversely
proportional to its success; it will be best if we no longer make it
through the year (or if hospitalization is a MUST).

Good luck.

Alan Sondheim


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