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Gabrys, Jennifer

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  • Media in the dump

    'Media in the Dump' examines the phenomenon of electronic waste through five locations, from sites of manufacture (Silicon Valley) to disposal (China). This essay is original in its interdisciplinary approach to the topic of electronic waste. It synthesises fieldwork and scholarship from technology to design and cultural studies. The structure for this essay is original in its surveying of five 'waste ecologies' that traverse the globe.

    Citizen Sensing, Air Pollution and Fracking: From ‘Caring about Your Air’ to Speculative Practices of Evidencing Harm

    Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is an emerging and growing industry that is having considerable effects on environments and health. Yet fracking often lacks environmental regulations that might be understood as governmental forms of care. In some locations in the US, citizens have taken up environmental monitoring as a way to address this perceived absence of care, and to evidence harm in order to argue for new infrastructures of care. This paper documents the practices of residents engage...

    Powering the Digital: From Energy Ecologies to Electronic Environmentalism

    Electronics and all that they plug into are energy intensive. Energy is another form of waste, like electronic waste that contributes to the material footprint of electronic technologies. This chapter examines the particular ways in which electronics use energy, from manufacture to powering devices to running cloud servers. While electronics consume energy, they are also used to manage energy consumption with the hope of achieving greater sustainability. By developing the concept of “electron...

    Air Walk: Monitoring Pollution and Experimenting with Speculative Forms of Participation

    The rise of low-cost environmental monitoring technologies has shifted the subjects, sites and practices involved in detecting and experiencing air pollution. How might these new arrangements and detections of air pollution be further developed through practice-based research? This chapter discusses an ‘Air Walk’ held in the South London neighborhoods of New Cross Gate and Deptford in July 2013. The walk was a pilot event held as part of the Citizen Sense research project, which focuses on di...

    Machines fall apart: failure in art and technology

    Technological failure is often considered to be central to the logic of innovation. Artists working with technology at the inception of widespread post-war automation, including Jean Tinguely and Gustav Metzger, focused particularly on machines geared toward failure. At the same time, Experiments in Art and Technology (E.A.T.), an organization founded to enable collaboration between artists and engineers, encountered failure at times unintentionally and attempted to recast the role that failu...

    Telepathically urban

    Proposals for ubiquitous computing have taken a variety of forms, from “utility fogs” to “pervasive networks.” This chapter considers smart dust as a hypothetical and actual proposal made for pervasive computing in an urban context. Proposals for smart dust have been developed in the form of tiny wireless sensors that could be released en masse, so that countless machines are in constant relay, coordinating information about an environment. Wireless sensors, distributed and embedded in enviro...

    Sensing an experimental forest: processing environments and distributing relations

    The use of wireless sensor networks to study environmental phenomena is an increasingly prevalent practice, and ecological applications of sensors have been central to the development of wireless sensor networks that now extend to numerous ‘participatory’ applications. How might environmental sensing projects be understood as giving rise to new practices for sensing environmental processes, and what are the implications of these new modalities of sense? Working through posthuman media theory,...
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