<body> Public Ad Campaign: VRIRUS' and Grafitti-Finding Yourself In a Complex Network
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Thursday, July 8, 2010

VRIRUS' and Grafitti-Finding Yourself In a Complex Network

Jennifer Jacobs, a friend, artist, and computer programmer, sent me an article on computer viruses and their potential for creating a better internet. In this article there is an interesting comparison between the intentions of programmers of viruses and graffiti artists that I thought was worth noting. It would seem, at least in the beginning, a virus programmers intentions were very similar to that of the urban graf writer, to let em know you're out there. Speaking about the infamous programer Hellraiser's introduction to virus' after a small career of graffiti in NY, the article notes his reaction.

"Street graffiti's ability to scatter tokens of one's identity across the landscape of an entire metropolis looked provincial in comparison. 'With viruses,' Hellraiser remembers thinking, 'you could get your name around the world.'"
I am always taken by individual needs to tag, infiltrate, and mark the complex systems that people are a part of in order to gain notoriety and or possibly something much simpler, recognition of their existence. The notion that programers and graf artists are trying to do harm to the streets, or large computer networks, is less clear when you become familiar with their often benign intentions of simple recognition. It begs us to see their actions as less of a crime to be dealt accordingly, than as a symptom of some larger social need in which we find ways of including everyone in the anonymous networks of individuals that pervade major metropolitan life.
Download Article [Here]

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