Part 1 from The Cloud is more than Air and Water V1.0.
DC1 - Lighting up the Information Super Highway.
What is ‘The Cloud’ and how is it affecting our lives? The Cloud is more than Air and Water (CMTAW) is a project investigating the acoustic ecology and impact of cloud computing on the lives of those who use it, the places it is physically located in and the people who work to maintain it.
Lighting up the Information Superhighway examines the culture in the often secretive world of data centers to use high volumes of LED’s as both a notification tool and to make data centers attractive environments. A quick study of commercial videos and stock imagery of data centres demonstrates a high volume of LED’s on display that are ironically combined with information about high security and how only a very limited number of people ever get to access the server racks themselves. LED-lamps are low-emission materials that are often used in excess for no major gain to the functionality of the otherwise noisy and empty world of the data center.
As the lights flicker, the HVAC and cooling systems continue to whirr, producing the oppressive sonic environment of the data center, the hum and whirr of The Real-Cloud. The composition of the sound in the piece is sourced from the very data center that the imagery depicts. That of the whirring and crunching of hard drives and spinning and sucking of HVAC air conditioning systems cooling the rows of computer processors that house the brains of the cloud. An automatic door opens and closes as an engineer approaches the rack space, the beep from a small notification buzzer calls out intermittently.
The piece is part of a large site-specific installation at the Birmingham Conservatoire (UK), with the musical composition designed for six channel playback. It has been condensed to stereo for this video.
All material developed by Matt Parker, audio produced using Ableton Live 9 Suite, Max/MSP/Jitter, Vizzable, VModule and Adobe After Effects.
Following last week’s successful installation, I am going to post the video work progressively here with the full installation work video coming shortly.