Before creating interactive electronic art we must have experience using it. Here we look at the audience point of view. Is the art a performance, installation, using the web? Understanding how our audiences experience interactive electronic art will help us communicate our ideas effectively.
THE finearts server
facs-newmedia.finearts.yorku.ca, facs-newmedia.finearts.yorku.ca, Alive and Well (in the Winters College (Public) zone at York University all refer to the server (a Macintosh G3/366 running Appleshare IP) in the Winters Fine Arts Computer Centre in 122 Winters College.
What Disks are Available
Generally students have three disks available to them
- finearts web
This disk is for storing only files that are to be available on the web. All folders are inside the web folder.
- course disk (eg. 2930A or 2930B)
This disk is for storing files that are not available on the web. Generally this disk will contain working files for web sites and Director projects as well as Director projects themselves.
This disk contains examples and past student work.
Logging in to the server
You need to log on to the server in order to create, edit, and delete files. You can log on to the server from any computer on the internet by using an ftp application or if you are using a Mac you can use Chooser. Using Chooser with a modem connection is not recommended. Using Chooser is recommended because the server disks mount on your desktop just like any other disk making this method more straightforward. Using ftp is crucial skill to acquire if you plan to do pursue the internet any further.
On the Macintosh
- Go to the Apple Menu and select Chooser:
- If you are on campus click on Winters College (Public) Zone then Alive and Well:
- If you are off campus click Server IP Address then type facs-newmedia.finearts.yorku.ca:
- Type in your Name and Password:
- Choose the disk you want to mount:
Please do not click on the checkbox. If you do, the next person who starts up that computer will be asked to log in as you and must click cancel. If many people make this mistake then one must cancel a great deal of times.
Logging on for the First Time
When you log on for the first time you must change your password. The only way to change your password is by logging through Chooser.
Your server username is the first letter of your first name and your last name. (Mine would be dsinclair.) The default password is entrance.
Log on with the Chooser as above. After you enter you username and password, you will immediately be told you must change your password. Click Ok then click on Change password... Your old password is entrance. Type in a new password that is 7 or 8 characters.
On the PC
I am not sure if the is anything like Chooser. If there is please tell me
On the Macintosh
The most popular ftp application for the mac is Fetch. The lab is using version 4
but version 3
is just fine too.
Launch Fetch the choose new connection from the file menu:
Type in your username and password then click on Ok. You will then have access to the same disks you would through Chooser:
On the PC
Sending Email to an Instructor
This method is wonderful for getting relatively quick responses since we all read our mail regularly. However, you can do things to make the whole process even more efficient!
Don't just say:
"My image doesn't work. I need help!!"
Try something like:
"I am having trouble with an image called junk.jpg on the page: facs-newmedia.finearts.yorku.ca/astudent/a1/trash.html".
We all have access to your accounts so this will help us get the answer more quickly.
The following is a classification of the different ways audiences can access interactive electronic art. This is a guide.
Who does the interaction?
- artist participates
- audience participates
- direct interaction with computer
- single user
- small: disk or download
- large: CD ROM
What it is
Essentially it is a bunch of computers connected by a number of wires that transmit data at high speeds.
What you need to use it
There are generally 2 situations:
- a computer at an institution (such as York) which has a large infrasructure for computer communications
- a computer at a home or small business that has a modem connected to a phone line
- in the near future a computer at a home or small business connected to a cable television line
I will discuss just a few of the popular internet services but there are many more.
The ability to send a message to another person with an internet email account. This message usually contains just text, but can have attached to it a graphic, a video clip, a sound or any other computer file.
The ability to make available multimedia data to anyone who has a WWW browser.
Discussion groups covering almost any conceivable topic. Anyone with access to news can post to a news group and read the posts to a news group. At York there are about 10 000 groups available.
A method of transferring a file from one computer to another over internet. There are very large storage areas containing all sorts of files from software updates, shareware software, pictures, video clips, and other data.
The world wide web (part of the internet) contains much information about the internet itself. The following links will get you started:
The World Wide Web with Netscape
What the web combines
Text, images, sound, video, animation, interactivity
Who can use the web
Anyone who has a capable computer, an inexpensive or free piece of software and access to the internet.
Where it is going
The internet has become very popular in the few couple of years. Future technical developments will mainly be increased speed. This speed will increase in two areas. Home users will move from relatively slow modems to higher speed connections provided by phone companies and cable companies. The major links between computers on the internet (the wires containing the data moving between these computers) will increase. With this increased speed, often called bandwidth, media such as real-time video and sound will be possible on a large scale.
Location or URL
Your current location is displayed at the top of the window in the location field. Location is technically referred to as a URL (Uniform Resource Locator). A web page has a URL of the form: http://www.someplace.somewhere/aDirectory/aFile.html. The URL for my home page is: http://facs-newmedia.finearts.yorku.ca/Don/default.html go to don's page
notice when the cursor is over a link that URL is displayed at the bottom of the window.
The idea of URL is actually more general. See the entry in Interactive Authoring Tools:WWW for an expanded definition.
More Information about the web
The best place to find out about the web is by looking at sites on the web!
HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language. It is the language used to design WWW pages. Interactive Authoring Tools:WWW
is an extensive section describing how to use this language.
A web browser is a program or application that let's you browse the world wide web. Many browsers exist. The two most popular are Netscape Navigator
and Microsoft Internet Explorer
. We are currently using Netscape for a number of reasons including: it was available first so we are used to it and it is free for academic use. IE is free so if (and it looks like this may happen) Netscape begins to charge for its browser we hay change to IE.
See Yahoo's Computers and Internet:Internet:World Wide Web:Browsers for more info.
What it is
As discussed above, Netscape is a program for browsing the WWW.
How to get around
To move to a different place or site or page you need to click on a link. Any text in this document that is blue or purple are links and can be clicked on. Once you click on a blue link, it becomes purple to indicate it has been viewed. Links may also be underlined depending on the browser's setup. Authors of web pages can change the colour of their links and text that is not a link, so look out for different colour links. Many pictures are also clickable. Some pictures have hot-spots so that clicking on a different place follows a different link.
The Back button will take you to the previous page you saw. The Go menu allows you to return to recent pages. The Directory and Help menus contain useful starting points and help with the program. Buttons are provided at the top of the window for many often used functions. Some of items from the Directory and Help menus are duplicated here.
The menu at the top right of the screen contains extensive help also.
How to Find Things
One of the common complaints about the web is that it is too big/overwhelming/full of junk. If you know how to find things efficiently, you will overcome these complaints.
With new pages appearing at a very high rate, we need a method to search for a topic we are interested in. Search Engines are programs that go out and search the web in a systematic way for pages and make the results of this searching available to us in a flexible way. The Netscape program has a pointer to its own page for searching (Internet Search
Virtual libraries categorize web pages in a structured way. Yahoo
(Yet Another Hierarchical O? O?) is a very popular one. Also see:
The difference between a search engine and a virtual library is often blurred because many virtual libraries are searchable.
Valid for Fall/Winter 2003-2004
The material contained in this site is copyright and owned exclusively by Don Sinclair and members of the FACS teaching team.
Last modified on 14-Nov-03 at 9:28 AM.