frauke's notes: Martin Pichlmair 'TRATTI'

Martin and Laura have been collaborating on the seven mile boots (http://randomseed.org/sevenmileboots/)
He is presenting some background of the use of bull horns as political device and of the musical and artistic use of the devices, starting with the Futurists who used the bullhorn as icon to work against the musical establishment. One other early project worked worked with compressed air and was one of the loudest music devices ever invented until then.It was hooked up to several instruments, like a bass, to amplify the sound of the instrument. In other artistic examples the bull horn is often more important as statement than as amplification device.
More recent examples of using bull horns in art and music include:
- Benoit maubrey pieces
- 'exploded monologues' by troika from London (microphones in gas mask, controler sets direction of speakers)
- 'tool for armchair activists' by troika, (that was done before the introduction of speaking cctv)
- remote controlled car playing he sample with little bull horn
- acoustic space gun by Mark Bain

In Tratti (means funnel in Finnish) the sound of a mobile phone is amplified by horn speaker. Michael classifies the projects as device art, where the picking of the physical material and playfulness are key elements. Depending on the colour the mobile phone camera is picking up the following audio operations are executed: record, silence, faster, reverse.

The authors stress that working with a mobile phone is often fighting against the device for the developer and proprietary hard- software was slowing down the development a lot. Martin talked about some aspects of the mobile phone and mobile phone culture that are addressed in the piece, the talking and the listening: people are talking everywhere and you are frequently forced to overhear conversations of strangers. Tratti makes two key aspects of mobile phone visible: the speakers and camera are enlarged.

Future plans include a collaborative version where different Trattis can exchange sounds by facing each other, to exchange by joining up beelies.

In the discussion, the focus was on children, problems of development and health issues:
- One discussant was asking for more art for kids on media art festivals, as thay are now growing up with technology, e.g. mobile phones. Kristina suggesting to include kids in the process of designing interaction. One idea for evaluating this type of projects is not to tell the testers the rules. often leading to the kids finding interesting grey areas and they know what is fun and what is boring.
- The technical part of the discussion revolved around the various problems of developing for mobile phones. Gum stick is proposed as alternative platform to solve something of the technical problems.
- Another issue arising are the health issues of mobile phones, especially as children are using it. For Tratti the phones are in offline mode, so this is not an issue.
- Finally, Kristina suggests that the mobile phone has become a device with an identity crisis as it is not optimised to do anything in particular anymore, but rather does a lot of things unsatisfactory.

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