Dear Joel and Amy
Thank you for your feedback. We appreciate your suggestions, and have been figuring out the best way to develop our piece to accommodate those guides. Also, we started working with Charlotte Stiles, a student from CMU who’s interning with us. Thanks to your feedback and her help, we made a significant progress to articulate our plan and want to share with you.
##Space. We think the idea of doing the event in the Lab and the garden is very good because it will allow the participants to navigate between the public space and the lab space easily. The garden might also be one of the most quiet space in the museum. However, we wonder if we can still have some kind of activity at the BP and LATCC. It doesn’t need to be a full setting of the mobile station but something more casual and non-intrusive of the other museum visitors. For example, there will be a block of time during the workshop where the participants may navigate around the museum on their own with the Personal Timekeepers.
We think having the participants in the open space like BP or LATCC is important for the piece because it’s a private experience in the public space. We are not sure how this might complicate the space reservation and logistics, and understand we are asking a lot of resources. Also, we think we need to give you more you more detailed and visual description of what the mobile station to consider for public intervention. Could we hold on until the weekend about the space, so we can provide more details for you to review?
##Schedule and audience. Based on your suggestion, we thought of ways where we can do two identical performances over two days while staying true to our concept, and also reaching a wider audience. We think we can have the Saturday event geared toward adults, including our friends and collaborators. The Sunday event can be open to a wider age group including children and elders, thus a family day. Do you think it will be a good idea to specifically address these groups in the event announcement? In the Timekeeper Invention Club last year, we found it a bit challenging to give a workshop to pre-teens and adults at the same time, we think everyone’s experience will be better if we can prepare for their demographic. However, the project maybe too complex for very young children, so we might need to consider having an age limit.
For the schedule, here’s our proposal based on your suggestion.
10:00am–12:00pm: Set up the Lab and mobile station outside in garden (station will be stationed off and guard can invite curious passerby to the performance later that day.)
12:00–1:00pm: Workshop Part 1 Introduction: Personalized Time
Introduction, presentation in the lab. Practice and technology trial run in the garden - participants familiarize themselves with devices in the garden. 2:00–4:00pm: Performance in the garden and the public is invited to participate. Participants may explore other parts of the museum. Detail of their experience in the Program section. 2:30–4:00pm: Video interview in Lab, sharing experiences.
4:00–4:30pm: Workshop Part 2 Introduction: Consensus Time
4:30–5:30pm: Defining their consensus time, exchange contact and wrap up. 5:30–6:00pm: Live Implementation of the Consensus Time 6:00–6:30pm: Clean up and close the Lab. The schedule for Saturday and Sunday is identical. If we gear toward youth and elderly participants in the Sunday, we may consider making the program tighter.
##Program. The 6 hours program in Saturday and Sunday that’s open to the registered participants. The museum visitors may engage in a limited interaction with the piece as well.
The participants arrive at 12pm. There is an introduction from the artists explaining the Personal Timekeepers, what the participants can expect to do during their time at the museum, and that the wrap up of the program is going to involve making a video as well as a discussion about their experience.
After that, everyone will be given their own Personal Timekeeper and instructed through setting it up. During this initialization, they press and hold the button on the Personal Timekeeper to set the amount of time they think one minute is, without looking at the watch or other people’s help. This recorded minute can vary from 30 seconds to 90 seconds (we set those parameters to allow for a reasonable time participants can reconvene for the video and discussion), and then the Personal Timekeeper starts keeping time using that ‘personal’ minute instead of a normal minute of 60 seconds. We will refer to this newly created time as Personal Time (PRT).
At 1pm PDT (Pacific Daylight Saving Time), they are instructed to explore the spaces in the museum with other participants; alone and in small groups through game mechanics that are explained in the booklet. We will elaborate on the details of the ways of engaging through in the follow up.
The participants are instructed to return to the garden when their Personal Timekeeper reads 3pm. In other words, at 3pm PRT.
As their Personal Times vary, the participants will all arrive at different times in PDT, between 1:30pm and 4pm, depending on how they initially set their Personal Timekeeper, and how they interacted with the device (more explanation on below).
The technical mechanism of the time drift (their Personal Time going out of sync from the standard time, PDT) can be explained as following:
Normally, 1 minute consists of 60 seconds. With our Personal Timekeepers, you can set 1 minute as fast as 30 seconds or as slow as 90 seconds. This in turn change the speed of time passing, 1 hour Personal Time can be as quick as 30 minutes Standard Time or as slow as 1.5 hours. Therefore, in our performance, the participants are asked to return at 3pm PRT and they may arrive as early as 2pm PDT or as late as 4pm PDT. Inline image 2
During the performance between 1pm PDT to 3pm PRT, participants are encouraged to mark memorable moments pressing down the button on their timekeeping device for as long as the moment lasts. It is up to them to decide what moments are memorable. The time of moments will be recorded as time stamps on our server. The length of these moments will be subtracted from the amount of time they have until 3pm PRT, the appointment to come back to the garden. For example, if you hold the button for 1 minute of memorable moment between 1:00pm ~ 1:01pm, when you release the button at 1:01pm, the time will read as 1:02pm. You are one minute closer to the destined time of 3pm. This will result in the participants returning to the garden sooner and they will be given a chance to “relive” that moment in the garden by remembering and reflecting on the moment. They will only know of the moments by visualization of it’s length and relative distance within their time frame.
What the Timekeepers allow you to do is not circumvent time and jump to the future, but rather pulling time from the future so you arrive in the future sooner. What they find in the future is an opportunity to relive the past, and the time pulled is then lived again.
For example, if an eager participant, whose sense of time is very fast, initialize their 1 minute as 30 seconds, they are expected to return to the garden at 2pm. However, if they find every moment of their time memorable and press the button for thirty minutes, they may come as early as 1:30pm.
However, this is unlikely, and we are expecting most the participants will return to the garden between 2:30~3:30pm.
Between 1:30pm and 4pm, the minimum and maximum window of time, as the participants arrive, we will help the participants to make videos about the moments they marked as well as their experience living in their own time. The video will on duration of 1 minute on their PRT.
A short break with snacks and second introduction will follow between 4~4:30pm at the Lab. Then, we will introduce the concealpt of Consensus Time and how we are trying to use the experience of Personal Time to reach a consensus between the participants.
Inline image 1
Between 4:30~5:30pm, we will organize a roundtable for all participants to discuss how they should reach the consensus of personal times. Everyone will be given equal opportunity based on horizontal democratic structure. They will only have one hour to reach an agreement, and the roundtable will be moderated by the artists. We may invite ask an external moderator or advisor (Peggy Weil comes to our mind) to help us lead this session.
The result of the roundtable will be initiation of <Consensus Time @ LACMA 2015.7.18> which will be broadcasted from the project website for ever and through the NTP server so that any interested party can setup a client to function in this timezone. We are planning to actively open source all aspects (technical and conceptual) of the project, so other iterations can take place by contributors.
The last part of the piece, and the part that the participants will take away is their custom URL for the online version of Personal Timekeeper. They will be able to access our website, and keep using and updating their personal time. Also they can check on other participant’s personal times and reach consensus for their time. This feature will enable the participants to be engaged in the piece and take creative freedom with the website to mark, give form to their personal time, develop systems for consensus time and so on. Also, audience who can not join for the performance at LACMA will be able to observe and participate online.
The custom hardware and documentations will can be exhibited in the lab for the duration you think is good, including the video documentation.
Will be happy to hear your feedback!
next update will be on the Hardware/ Software.
Very excited about this project and seeing you soon!
Roon + Taeyoon