Text, idea: Piotr Marecki, Implementation: Jan K. Argasiński, Estimote based "engine": Jakub Podczerwiński
The technical side of the project is based on the creation of a mobile application that runs in conjunction with iBeacon devices (Estimote Beacons). This technology includes a text generator in a spatial context and action based on the position relative to specified, „electronically tagged” objects. With this combination, dynamically created texts will operate in the context of a specially prepared micro version of the Internet of Things.
In our project, we focus on the work of the Polish poet Tadeusz Peiper (1881–1969), sometimes referred to as the Pope of the Avant-garde, an artist and theoretician of the socalled Kraków Avant-garde. His greatest achievement was a poetic form he called a “blossoming arrangement”, in which the constraint stems from the fact that the poem gradually unfolds from smaller units of the poem. We adapt Peiper’s classic „Kwiat ulicy” („Street Flower”), a blossoming poem from 1924, for Estimote Beacons. Thanks to the spatial possibilities of the iBeacon device, Peiper’s work gains the spatial shape of a blossom, which was limited by the page. The reader navigates the space with his mobile device in hand and by using the specially designed app, he/she discovers the 4 layers of the work. Operation of the proposed mobile application is based on three contextual aspects: the action of the paired smartphone and beacon working in tandem, the tracking capability of the beacon’s distance from the smartphone and recording the current direction of smartphone’s movement in relation to the beacon.
The actors in the created application include: users (operator with respect to whom and in response to whose actions that text will be generated), application (as the recipient of user actions; works in real time and reacts to those actions), smartphone (on which the application is running; the operating system [Android in this case] allows for use of built-in device sensors and transmitters/receivers that enable proper operation of an application and communication with the beacon), and the beacon (passive sender of the radio signal; its task is to broadcast continuous information about itself; in the project we assume that the beacons are fixed in one position).
The system consists of three main components and communication between them. The first component are passive signal senders, the Estimote Beacons. They broadcast information about themselves via Bluetooth Low Energy. Another component is the user application installed on the mobile device, smartphone. The application begins to listen for beacon signals in the vicinity. The last component is the Internet with freely realized connection between it and the application.
Thanks to the interdisciplinary approach (including, the critical code studies, expressive processing dictionary by Noah Wardrip-Fruin and exploratory programming by Nick Montfort, the study on constrained writing, theory of the avant-garde), we describe a complex process of creativity in digital media. The paper is designed as a technical report presenting the output of the project in the creative computing field.