Projektmodul / Project Module
The Posthuman Use of Transhuman Beings
Instructor: Vertr.-Prof. Jason Reizner
Credits: 18 ECTS, 12 SWS
Capacity: max. 15 students
Language: English
Date: Plenum: Tuesdays, 13:30-17:00; Consultations by appointment
Location: Online/Marienstraße 7b
First Meeting: 19 October 2021, 13:30 on BBB
(Link to online meeting will be sent to accepted participants by email.)
BISON Course ID: [TBA]

Description


The world of the future will be an ever more demanding struggle against the limitations of our intelligence, not a comfortable hammock in which we can lie down to be waited upon by our robot slaves.

– Norbert Wiener, 1964


Following his groundbreaking 1948 work Cybernetics: or Control and Communication in the Animal and the Machine, which introduced cybernetics both as a term of art and as a new scientific discipline, in 1950 Norbert Wiener went on to publish The Human Use of Human Beings, presciently envisioning how automation driven by cybernetic systems could benefit society while also warning of the potential ethical and sociological implications of their adoption and use in the context of the "limits of communication within and among individuals." (Wiener 1950)

In the intervening seven decades, these cybernetic systems have evolved from their origins as novel academic discourse to become the foundation of the now pervasive digital infrastructure that underpins how contemporary society communicates, transacts, creates and governs. The ubiquity of the interactions between humans and this infrastructure predicates the transhumanist argument that biotechnological augmentation is no longer science fiction but already the everyday lived experience of billions.

With a focus on "machines which learn; (...) machines which reproduce themselves; and (...) the coordination of machine and man" (Wiener 1964), this project module will explore the linkages and delineations between transhumanism and posthumanism at present to speculate on a future "no longer considering the interface with technology as an ergonomic relationship with an external tool that just extends the human body, but as a hybrid, or interpenetration that questions the separation of the body and its centrality." (Maestrutti 2011)

Through a series of lectures, workshops and targeted discussions, participants will address topics including cybernetics, transhumanist interfaces and singularity, critical and speculative posthumanism, post-human-centered design, telepresence/telerobotics, network cultures, information landscapes and platform ecosystems, machine learning, human and artificial intelligence, generative and autonomous systems.

Admission requirements

Enrollment in MKGMedienkunst/Mediengestaltung/MAD MFAMaster of Fine Arts – graduate students will receive this degree or MediaArchitecture MSc programs

Application and registration procedure

Application with CV1. [[Tracking Motion Detection|Computer Vision]], 2. [[wikipedia:Curriculum vitae]] and Statement of Motivation to jason.reizner [ät] uni-weimar.de

Evaluation

Successful completion of the course is dependent on regular attendance, active participation, completion of assignments and delivery of a relevant semester prototype and documentation. Please refer to the Evaluation Rubric for more details.

Eligible participants

MFAMaster of Fine Arts – graduate students will receive this degree Medienkunst/-gestaltung, MFAMaster of Fine Arts – graduate students will receive this degree Media Art and Design, MSc MediaArchitecture candidates

Platforms and Tools

This WikiHaiwaiian for ''fast'' (not an acronym). It is the name for a hypertext system for websites where the user may not only read the content but is also able to change it instantaneously through the browser.
BigBlueButton (only as necessary)
Cisco WebEx
Are.na
MURAL
Miro
Google Jamboard

Syllabus (subject to change)

19 October 2021 / Week 1
Introduction
Course Organization
Administrative Housekeeping

Assignment: For next week, please review the following:
The Eccentric Genius Whose Time May Have Finally Come (Again) by Doug Hill and
“Getting Started” Guide to Cybernetics by Paul Pangaro

Please be ready to share your preliminary ideas for your concept for your semester project.



26 October 2021 / Week 2
Cybernetics, or Go With the Flow Control
Algorithmic, Computational & Generative Forms

Assignment: TBA



2 November 2021 / Week 3
Oh, the (Trans)Humanity
Critical and Speculative Posthumanist Approaches

Assignment: TBA



9 November 2021 / Week 4
Project Roundtable I

Assignment: TBA



16 November 2021 / Week 5
Design Fiction, Speculative Futures and Xenodesign

Assignment: TBA




23 November 2021 / Week 6
Information Landscapes I

Assignment: TBA



30 November 2021 / Week 7
Midterm Presentations

Assignment: TBA



7 December 2021 / Week 8
Tangibles and Wearables: Interaction at the Edge

Assignment: TBA



14 December 2021 / Week 9
Concept Development Lab I

Assignment: TBA



4 January 2022 / Week 10
Information Ontologies and Semantic Systems

Assignment: TBA



11 January 2022 / Week 11
Platform Environments
Post-Physical and Networked Interfaces

Assignment: TBA



18 January 2022 / Week 12
Synthetic Realities

Assignment: TBA



25 January 2022 / Week 13
Debug Lab

Assignment: TBA



1 February 2022 / Week 14
Final Presentations