From Server Farm to Data Table

Ingrid Burrington

Early digital computers were the size of rooms. While the devices have gotten smaller, because of the increasingly networked nature of technology the room has gotten bigger--it's ceased having walls and started to cover the ocean floor and ascend into low earth orbit. While Neal Stephenson may have cornered this living-inside-a-computer narrative in 1996 with "Mother Earth, Mother Board", in the past twenty years the seams of the network have become even more opaque, subsumed into The Cloud and other problematic abstractions. This talk will mostly be about different approaches to documenting, comprehending, and thinking about network infrastructure and the ways that the visual vernacular of technologies shape their history and politics.

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