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Telegarden

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Telegarden

TeleGarden
Commercial? No
Type of site Telerobotics
Registration Optional
Available language(s) English
Created by Ken Goldberg and Joseph Santarromana
Launched June 1995;  (1995-06)
Current status Offline

The TeleGarden was a telerobotic community garden for the Internet. Starting in the mid-1990s, it allowed users to view, plant and take care of a small garden, using an Adept-1[1] industrial robotic arm controlled online.

The project began at the University of Southern California[2] with project directors Ken Goldberg of University of Southern California, and Joseph Santarromana, a University of California, Irvine artist at the time known for his video installations.[3] They envisioned it as an art installation challenging the notion of the Internet[4] and "consider[ing] the 'post-nomadic' community, where survival favors those who work together."[2]

Project members included George A. Bekey, Steven Gentner, Rosemary Morris, Carl Sutter, Jeff Wiegley, and Erich Berger.[2][5] The Telegarden went online in June 1995. During its first year, it attracted over 9000 members.[2] In September 1996, the Telegarden was moved to the Ars Electronica Center in Austria where it was originally planned to be on display for one year,[2] though it ended up remaining active until August 2004 (2004-08).[5]

Concept

The concept behind the Telegarden was inspired by the internet. It is a fusion between old technology (agriculture) and new technology (the internet). The notion of a physical garden that is operated by users online was appealing to Goldberg because "it was the most absurd".

This new media art raised questions of the legitimacy of the internet. How are users to know that the garden actually exists, or that any of their motions matter? Goldberg stresses that, "media technology generally facilities the suspension of disbelief."[6]

Users

In its nine years of existence the installation had 10,000 members, and 100,000 people visited the physical exhibit. The user interactivity created a miniature social network. People became protective of plants, even territorial.[7]

References

Notes

Bibliography

External links

  • Telegarden homepage from Ken Goldberg
  • Ken Goldberg's UC Berkeley homepage
  • IEEE
  • Introduction to Telegarden by Ars Electronic (Linz, Austria)
  • Photo Collage and Description from "Database of Virtual Art" (virtualart.at)
  • Walker Art Center
  • "A Performance Space without Geographical Boundaries" (1977) from ecafe.com
  • Muntadas's "File Room" (1994)
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