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Time Sensory Perception Machine (’03)

8/23/2003, Anti Space Suite: Dirty Future show, Gallery 2, Chicago (Bio Feedbacks (Brain Wave using IBVA) based Interactive Multimedia Installation)

The idea of the time machine has a long history going back way before the beginning of science fiction, but through science fiction. It really reached its fullest potential. The space age is an attempt at the realization of sci-fi, the optimism that the “dreams of today is the reality of tomorrow.” A Utopian future, only the dreams, and none of the reality of side effects, technological failure, insufficient budgets, economic collapse, and pollution. The time machine perfectly embodies the utopian dreams. A device that is theoretically possible but physically impossible, or at least way beyond any contemporary means.

On the other hand, the alteration of ones time perception is not beyond our means. Thus, for our project, we are going to work more conceptually by creating a Time Sensory Perception Machine. When we started to develop this project we had few questions about time: why and how do people feel that time passes at different rates? Is time personal and indeterminate? What is it that makes time past differently for different ages, generations? The final and most important question that our piece focuses on is “Can we change our perception of time?

The users sits inside of an eight foot geodesic sphere, and see multiple images of themselves projected onto the inner walls of the sphere. Each image in the sequence of multiple images is slightly delayed from the previous. The users controls this amount of delay between the processing time of our own audio/visul synthesis program and their biofeedback frequency. By creating a feedback loop between the users perception of time and their biofeedback frequency, they can create their own ambient sound system. It is synchronized with real-time video images which are delayed by the users’ biofeedback frequency. In effect allowing the user to understand the way that the brain dictates how we perceive the passage of time moment to moment, and just how relative it can be.